This Week In St. Louis 3/28/16 - 4/3/16


Jefferson Street Parade Band (IN)
Sunday Candy
Khaled Hussein
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
9 p.m. / $7 / all ages

True to its name, the Jefferson Street Parade Band is a marching band that lifts West African beats and the bombast of New Orleans jazz to craft a strong street-level aesthetic while retaining grit and musicality. The band swings and bounces through a range of tasteful call backs with deep drums and a solid section of blasting horns. Fresh off the release of the Texas Room's Non-Fiction compilation, Iraqi-singer Khaled Hussein will also perform collaborative pieces with Louis Wall. 


Sheer Mag (PA)
Laffing Gas (IN)
Lumpy and the Dumpers
@ Blank Space / 2847 Cherokee St.
9 p.m. / $10 / all ages

Who cares about SXSW? Pitchfork Media? If you do, then Sheer Mag is a familiar name already. Hailed as saviors of rock while being closely guarded by punk scenes across the country, this is a band that might be forced to play the likes of the Firebird or Ready Room next time they hit St. Louis. Think riffs for days with a singer who nails the raw approach to singing while staying subdued enough to actually harmonize -- Sheer Mag fits the bill for people who grew up with nothing to watch but Woodstock bootlegs on VHS. 

Jon Mueller
Alex Barnett
Ghost Ice
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
8:30 p.m. / $10-$12 / all ages

The duo of Faith Coloccia and Aaron Turner carves out warped figures of drone with a careful approach to sound art. While the live pieces bring considerable breadth, the use of keys, voice and guitar is nuanced enough to prevent sets from feeling lengthy or overwrought. Chicago-native Alex Barnett crafts the nearest neighbor to vintage science-fiction soundtracks through a stack of synthesizers which he wreaks absolute havoc on. Known for his work as the drummer in Collections of Colonies of Bees (and most recently, Death Blues), percussionist Jon Mueller offers a fierce, singular style behind the set that feels sharp and biting. This whole night is inundated with some of the strongest performers in experimental music today, owing up to the $12 asking price, despite Foam's usual $5 -- don't let the extra dollars deter you. 


Bruxism #15 feat.:
Jeff Kolar
Vernacular String Trio
The Brothers Clapp

@ Schlafly Tap Room / 2100 Locust St.
9 p.m. / free / all ages

The latest in Nathan Cook's BRUXISM concert series offers the legendary Jeff Kolar, whose work spans across several countries, including Austria, Germany and Denmark. The Chicago sound artist offers a distinct take on remixing and live sound collage, but his style is punctuated by an underlying tendency for harsh noise. The Vernacular String Trio brings Joshua Weinstein (of All Soul, No Borders on KDHX), Tracy Andreotti (of the Metropolitan Orchestra of Saint Louis) and violinist Alex Cunningham together for a frantic gnashing of strings that invokes panic and unrest.

Sneaky Creeps from KC brings its "cow-shit punk" to San Loo with support by Little Big Bangs and more. 

Greyscale plays Blank Space with Family Medicine, LifeWithout and more.


Selena Cross (LA)
Kiran Arora (LA)
St. Louis Laptop Ensemble

NNN Cook
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
8 p.m. / all ages

Remember Sissisters from LA? Selena Cross is the newest name from the same camp and while little media exists for the group online, checking out Sissisters gives a good indication of the fierce wall of noise to come. The real oddity on this night is the St. Louis Laptop Ensemble which offers many of the city's longest running experimental artists in one room, generating sound via, you guessed it, laptop computers. Check out this list of "band" members: Chris Smentowski, Ajay Khanna, Dave Stone, Ghost Ice, Jeremy Melsha, Kevin Harris and Chad Hickman. 


Benefit show for David Feldmann feat.:
Summer Twins (CA)
The Daddyo's (OK)
Trauma Harness
The Vanilla Beans
Little Big Bangs
+many more
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
10 p.m. / $5-$10 / all ages

Besides being a benefit for David Feldmann (close friend of many in the music scene -- recently diagnosed with cancer), the lineup reads more like a festival crossing south city punk, odd pop and noise. With Summer Twins and the Daddyo's coming from California and Oklahoma (respectively), the show is sure to harsh mellows, you know, in the best way. 

Watch Beauty Pageant and others ruin the night of unsuspecting bar-goers over at the Heavy Anchor.


Mean Girls (Austin, TX)
Dog Hips
Double God
@ Dugan Haus
7:45 p.m. / $5 / all ages

Self-proclaimed queercore is political enough, but Austin's Mean Girls offers substantial songs behind its statements. Dog Hips (featuring members of other new band, Sunday Candy) plays its first show while Double God offers its second with new dual-singers, John Beabout and Chelsi Webster. 

Wrong Division Playlist 3/25/16

Wrong Division airs live every Thursday evening/Friday morning from 1AM to 3AM on 88.1 FM KDHX. Stream the show and check out past playlists at KDHX.ORG.

Maximum Effort “Mule” from Seven Cuts From the Offshore Abortion Clinic
Bib “The Answer” from Demo 2015
The Melodonts “Paranoid” from Don't Accept
Laffing Gas “Bob” from Laffing Gas
Boreal Hills “Lyfe” from Golden KRAL
Brainstems “Keep It All Together” from No Place Else
Lumpy andThe Dumpers “Face the Meat” from Demo 1
Jack Toft “Doin Art” from Doin Art
Alex Barnett “Try Harder” from Section 3
Jerkagram “Anteater” from Outer Limbs
Hylidae “Coral” from Intransitive
Nü Sensae “Cats Cradle” from Tv, Death and the Devil
The Bug “Bad Seeds” from What's Buggin' You?
Bugs and Rats “Hole in the Ocean” from Bugs and Rats
Footwork “Currency, No!” from + JMBVM
Health Problems “Paramount” from Winners
Melkbelly “Bathroom at the Beach” from Bathroom at the Beach - Single
Flesh World “Just To Tear Me Down” from The Wild Animals In My Life
Terrible Truths “Pressure” from Terrible Truths
Haybaby “Old Friends” from Sleepy Kids
Thy Mighty Contract “Conjugal Freelance” from Thy Mighty Contract
BIG BEAR “Song 22” from Under the Beach
Nick Millevoi “Bruxer” from Black Figure of a Bird - EP
Made in Mexico “Infrared Eye” from Made In Mexico/Athletic Automaton
High Castle “ten” from You're On Your Own Way
High Castle “solomon” from You're On Your Own Way
Die Monitr Batss “Heatersss” from Girls of War
Skimask “Favorite Flavor” from Cute Mutant
Ugh, God “Re-Ejected” from Deep, Dark, Mysterious and Serious
The Ex + Tom Cora “Total Preparation” from Scrabbling At The Lock
Gold Standard “Motor Skills Are Hard To Control” from Gold Standard
Tarngo “Semper Augustus” from Horman
Upsilon Acrux “Night of the Goblin” from Volucris Avis Dirae-Arum

This Week In St. Louis 3/21/16 - 3/27/16


Protests and Punk Shows While Making Other Plans: Musings of a Grumpy Old Gay Man - Birthday Edition feat.:
Stephen Houldsworth
@ St. Louis Workers' Education Society / 2929 S. Jefferson Ave.
7 p.m. / $10

When Stephen Houldsworth first performed his one-man show late last year, he blurred the lines between subversive music scenes in St. Louis and the activist community. Both deeply personal and relatable on a very human level, the live show speaks on many things -- all from the perspective of a (self-proclaimed) grumpy old gay man. Hear more about the event in this interview on NPR. Happy birthday, Stephen!


The Cowboys
The Maness Brothers
Soda Boys
@ Box / 3350 Ohio Ave.
8:30 p.m. / $5 / all ages

The Bloomington, Indiana-based Cowboys (or THE Cowboys) crank out southern-style roadhouse punk songs in assembly-line fashion. Riffs churn under a warbling voice with simple melodies that keep the overall vibe locked down. I'd call these bangers or whatever, but I think that means something different in 2016. Heads will bang and/or roll. Sure the show starts at 8:30, but Box is super tiny and this local lineup is the real special sauce here. Don't even think about punk time -- arrive early for once in your life.


Instinct Control (Chicago, IL)
Jaded Evil Lambs
@ Kismet / 3409 Iowa Ave.
9 p.m. / all ages

Instinct Control stalks around touching the exposed circuits of a reel-to-reel that hangs haphazardly from his neck. Last time this man played in St. Louis, he synced his own body to a projection of himself in real-time, invoking the uncanny valley through sight and careful, nuanced sound. David Bell is Jaded Evil Lambs, the sonic flux of one man's personal heaven and hell -- he's the opposite of a minimalist.

Florida's Melodonts bring stringent punk to Foam with Kenshiro's, Chalked Up and more -- an Acid Kat joint.

Maybe you missed the opening reception for Octarrarium? Regional Arts Commission hosts a free show inside the installation at 6 p.m. featuring Kevin Harris and Alex Cunningham.


New Music Circle presents:
The Necks (Australia)
@ KDHX / 3524 Washington Ave.
8 p.m. / $10-$20 / all ages

The Necks is best described as a jazz band for kraut-rock fans. Songs invoke a straight, passive vibe before they build and morph into whirling funnels of sound. Melodies race, rushing before collapsing into heavy breaks that ultimately steady the pace. Trying to describe the Neck's approach is perhaps a disservice -- it's best to go in with high expectations, if only to experience what it's like to have them met and utterly exceeded.

Jack Topht (Buffalo, NY)
Zero Control
Zak M
@ Kismet / 3409 Iowa Ave.
9 p.m. / $5 / all ages

Buffalo's Jack Topht (or is it Toft?) makes awesome rap. And the local line-up hangs hard, too. Zero Control is a new collaboration featuring David Bell of Jaded Evil Lambs, Sentel Brown of Folsom Beat and Drew Gowran of Sole Loan.

Bib from Nebraska leads a heavy three-band bill at Foam that features Blood Froth from Columbia and the Bubbleheads.

Jerkagram (CA)
Boreal Hills
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
9 p.m. / $5 / all ages

LA's Jerkagram is a duo of two brothers whose rough approach to indie rock takes from the best elements of punk. Its newest record sounds ripped straight from the '90s in the best way -- as if a few jazz-school dropouts went back in time to learn from the greats but crash-landed their time machine on the west coast circa 1991, spent two years in Seattle and returned to 2016 ever the wiser. 

Wrong Division Playlist 3/18/16

Wrong Division airs live every Thursday evening/Friday morning from 1AM to 3AM on 88.1 FM KDHX. Stream the show and check out past playlists at KDHX.ORG.

The Bug “Sunday Sermon Blues” from What's Buggin You?
Lysol “ill” from Demo
Bib “The Answer” from Demo 2015
Good Luck at the Hog Slaughter “The Ballad of Ned Stark” from Ghost Stories - Single
Muscle Brain “Friend of America” from Purgatore
YUKON “Mt. Pleasant” from Mortar
Grand Ulena “Between Tholozan and Oleatha” from Gateway to Dignity
Battles “The Yabba” from La Di Da Di
Kuan “l” from Colors
Psychic Paramount “Rw” from II
The Stnnng “Grand Island” from FAKE FAKE
The Wayward “Detective Story” from Overexposure
Multicult “Variable Impulse” from Variable Impulse
Brainiac “1 Am a Crack3d Machin3” from Hissing Prigs in Static Couture
Yona-Kit “Skeleton King” from Yona-Kit LP
The Sediment Club “B and the electric kill” from Kicked Back Into The Crypt
Noxagt “Mek It Burn” from Turning It Down Since 2001
Black Pus “Hear No Evil” from All My Relations (Bonus Track Version)
Fischessen “Kittner” from Köder
Man or Astro-man? “Um Espectro Sem Escala” from A Spectrum of Infinite Scale
Passe Montagne “98% Cuir” from Oh My Satan

This Week In St. Louis 3/14/16 - 3/20/16


Lemonade (MN)
Menthol (NC)
@ Bonerville
10 p.m. / all ages

Minneapolis punk seems to be permanently tainted by early shoegaze, but don't let pop-sensible riffs take away from the vicious vibe and that underlies Lemonade's debut demo. Remember Uranium Club? This band takes from the tastiest scraps and serves up a solid slice of guitar-drenched bliss. Voight-Kampff is your favorite Minneapolis-based hardcore band from St. Louis, or is it the other way around? And didn't Q break up? A very rare night from medium rare bands.


The Elsinores (KY)
Globsters (KY)
Black Panties
@ CBGB / 3163 S. Grand. Ave.
9 p.m. / $7 / 21+

Globsters takes tired cliches to task through songs that are partly power-violence but mostly vocal driven madness. While some see the Hazard, Kentucky-native as some sort of twisted scene trashing stand-up act, the music here cuts deep. When MRR's documentary on Adam Brewer made the rounds in 2012, most were charmed by his talking dog and pocket knife collection, but his sound tells a different story -- one that is genuine and free of irony -- a breath of fresh air in the modern age of posturing punk.


The Bug (Lansing, IL)
Slave Cable
Skin Tags
@ Box / 3350 Ohio Ave.
8 p.m. / $5 / all ages

The Bug from Lansing sounds more like no-wave played at top speed, a la early noise rock. Whatever you want to call it, the Bug occupies a rare space that appeals both to fans of more experimental guitar work and straight up hardcore. The sound reminisces southern California in the early '90s, but refreshed for current ears. The local lineup is especially telling, since it basically brings together three more hybrid punk bands that revel in the weird.


Benoit Pioulard (MI)
Jake Leech
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
10 p.m. / $8 / all ages

Benoit Pioulard's latest release Noyaux provides ambient synth work with considerable heft, evoking a slow burn that evolves in subtle increments. The journey through each piece brings its own peaks and valleys, but every moving part is so slow-moving and deliberate that it begs for patience and active listening. Jake Leech performs a rare ambient set on this night, recalling a distinct guitar-driven approach that he first developed when debuting as Kid Counselor roughly six years ago.

If you know where Bonerville is at, chances are you already know about the CRAVE RAVE happening on this night. If you didn't already have a reason to go to this White Castle-themed dance party, 18andcounting was just added to the lineup.


Lysol (WA)
Crutch (OK)
The Warden
@ Foam / 3359 S. Jefferson Ave.
9 p.m. / all ages

Lysol (now Lysol Incognito or L.I. to avoid lawsuits) does everything a punk band should do -- it hits every item on the checklist but still somehow comes out sounding so distinct. A solid, no-frills execution with attention to songwriting and restraint on more indulgent sections (cheesy rock riffage notwithstanding) propels the band into a more timeless territory, rather than a product of the times. Crutch is more grimy for sure, acting as a foil to Lysol more polished rock, but its inherent viciousness feels fresh in this context. The Warden is similarly heavy, but not without its fair share of catchy riffs.

Fans of full-on rock 'n roll should check out the Gnarly Davidson show at Foam, which features the debut of Matt Stuttler's (Shitstorm) new digs: Fabulous Beach Bodies.

Wrong Division Playlist 3/11/16

Wrong Division airs live every Thursday evening/Friday morning from 1AM to 3AM on 88.1 FM KDHX. Stream the show and check out past playlists at KDHX.ORG.

The Elsinores “Untitled I” from New Forms
Voight Kampff “The Great White North” from Voight Kampff
Menthol “Cold Glass” from Cold Glass
Shitstorm “666” from Hey Little Julie
Gymshorts “Owed to the Bank” from No Backsies
Gush “Repeat” from Naughty Nuff
The Bug “Buzz” from What's Buggin You?
Nü Sensae “Spit Gifting” from Sundowning
The VSS “Lunar Weight” from Nervous Circuits
Phantom Head “Do You Like This Life?” from South of Heaven
Glass Teeth “Secret Life” from Notice of Termination
What We Won't See “Fight Me” from blood covered winter
New England Patriots “Like a Rope” from (New England) Patriots Vol. 1
Gay Beast “We Keep Our Victims Ready” from Charm
The Ex “giant” from Knormalities Vs Posthumories
Voodoo Muzak “Ibanen Dako” from Knormalities Vs Posthumorites
Glenn Branca “Symphony No. 5: 1st Movement” from Symphony No. 5 (Describing Planes of an Expanding Hypersphere)
Ga'an “Chasmaeon” from Ga'an
The Dreebs “Bite” from BAITAN ORCHARD
Gorge Trio “The Age of Almost Living” from Open Mouth, O Wisp
The Denison / Kimball Trio “Cold Light of Day” from Plays the Music of "Walls In the City"
Zevious “eclipse” from Zevious
Smother Party “Inelux” from Casa Limon
This is My Condition and Dan Kozak “This Mission Pt. 1” from This Mission
The Night Grinder “Beautification & Sanitation” from UTOPIA
Lightning Bolt “13 monsters” from Ride the Skies
US Maple “Me, Digital” from Acre Thrills
Telomere Repair “Go Ahead Feel” from Telomere Repair
Chevreuil “Breakdance” from Capoeira

This Week In St. Louis 3/7/16 - 3/13/16


Boar (IA)
Xome (CA)
Fecal Dam
Beauty Pageant
Monster Sized Evil Lambs
@ The Way Out Club / 2525 South Jefferson Avenue 
9 p.m. / 21+ / $5
Boar's approach is deceptively simple. The Iowa sound artist hails from the heyday of noise where many performers merely ran a mic through guitar pedals and supplemented the aural aggression with screaming and nihilistic posturing. Boar is less of a call-back or snapshot of that time and more of a natural evolution, moving between warped static and warbling low tones to incite emotion. The full lineup features a one-time collaborative piece by David Bell of Jaded Evil Lambs and Rusty Anderson of Monster-Sized Monster.

Rik & the Pigs head off a Lumpy Recs showcase with Ruz, Mala Leche and Lumpy himself at CBGB.


The Funs
Relevant Hairstyles (IL)
Hoonbag Moonswag
@ Foam / 3359 South Jefferson Avenue 
 8 p.m. / $5 / all ages
Relevant Hairstyles has been a long-running side-project from the same collective of musicians behind Cave and many others. As far as the internet is concerned, the band is virtually non-existent so there's little to go on, but the Funs and Hoonbag Moonswag are both worth the price of admission alone. That said, arrive on time and be sure to catch the local support.

Slav (NY)
Wrung (NY)
@ Bonerville / Ask Somebody 
9 p.m. / $7 / all ages
You might not have the cash to travel to OKC for Everything Is Not OK, the punk fest that filters many killer bands on their way to Austin for SXSW, so consider this show a solid consolation. Think of it as a hardcore palette cleanser, with Slav and Wrung both bringing their own stark brands of heavy, heady guitar driven songs to St. Louis' favorite basement.

Chris Smentowski of Brain Transplant hosts a full night of experimental music at the Tavern of Fine Arts with Thomas Sutter, Nathan Cook, Ajay Khanna, Tracy Andreotti, Dave Stone, Jeremy Melsha and Jeremy Kannapell (aka Ghost Ice).


Octarrarium Opening Reception 
featuring Kevin Harris and Chad Eivins
@ Regional Arts Commission / 6128 Delmar Boulevard 
 5:30 p.m. / free / all ages
This is less of a traditional concert and more of an installation, but the recommendation still stands -- Chad Eivins (aka Chizmo.TV) has done amazing work inside the St. Louis music community for more than a decade and for this collaboration, he works with accomplished sound artist and visual mastermind Kevin Harris to create an interactive space inside the Regional Arts Commission building. There will be live music performances later in the month, but consider the opening night for a first look at this intense audio-visual experience.


Gymshorts (RI)
@ CBGB / 3163 South Grand Avenue 
9 p.m. / $5 / all ages
Although Gymshorts is good at deconstructing all the tiny moving parts that make a solid garage rock song, it ultimately crafts a set with a familiar vibe. The distinct tone comes from the band's fearlessness in applying noisier and dissonant parts inside a very solid and straight-ahead structure. There's restraint in all the right places and a tendency to let loose in short, calculated bursts.

Portland's Mope Grooves blends comedy with lo-fi garage rock at Foam alongside Kenshiro's, BBQ Boys and Stone Hen.

Wrong Division Playlist 3/4/2016

Wrong Division airs live every Thursday evening/Friday morning from 1AM to 3AM on 88.1 FM KDHX. Stream the show and check out past playlists at KDHX.ORG.

Ahleuchatistas “Sundowning” from Arrebato
Arvid Noe “What Makes A Person Break Their Phone?” from Islington
Forget The Times “Dead Slint” from Soul Music
New England Patriots “Like a Rope” from (New England) Patriots Vol. 1
Palberta “deja vu” from Special Worship
Palberta “Store” from Special Worship
The Dreebs “The Gym” from BAITAN ORCHARD
Timeghost “Phantom Ring” from Cellular
Black Pus “total eclipse” from Split
Bill Orcutt & Jacob Felix Heule “Unwanted Objects” from Colonial Donuts
GUERILLA TOSS “pink elephant” from Gay Disco - EP
Pygmy Shrews “please brain drugs” from The Egyptian
Brian Chippendale and Greg Saunier “Untitled” from Brian Chippendale and Greg Saunier
Eula “Aplomb” from Wool Sucking
Multicult “Othello” from Variable Impulse
Animal Lover “Plasme” from Guilt
Xaddax “The High Hat” from Counterclockwork
USCO “Beuhkse” from Treffpunkt
Bad News from Houston “Make It Fall” from In the Valley of the Cloud Builder

This Week In St. Louis 3/1/16 - 3/6/16


Acrylics (CA)
Brain Transplant
Catholic Guilt

@ Foam / 3359 South Jefferson Avenue

11 p.m. / $5 / all ages
Santa Rosa's Acrylics just dropped its self-titled tape -- a six-song gauntlet that revels in frantic riffs and general dischord. Part of the charm here lies with the band's take on standard hardcore stylings with a genuinely dark approach. Acrylics trades in thick-headed hyper masculine parts for sloppy, sewer-borne chords that offer a more disturbing vibe overall. The local lineup reflects the touring act's mish-mash of influences, ranging from punk to straight-up harsh noise.


Way Out Weirdo Wednesday #5 feat.:
Stone Hen
3 of 5
Zagk Gibbons
Joe Stein

@ Way Out Club / 2525 South Jefferson Avenue

9 p.m. / free / 21+
Way Out Weirdo Wednesday has become a reliable spot to see an actual variety show of noisy miscreants and musical miscellany at the top of every month. The fifth edition brings together solo pop-rocker Zagk Gibbons with fierce rapper Haiku. Chiptunes, psychedelic garbage rock and minimalist improvisations coalesce for a solid three-hour block that costs precisely zero dollars. Hump day for the bizarre and inane.


The Brainstems
Soda Boys

@ The Luminary / 2701 Cherokee Street

9 p.m. / $5 / all ages
While the lineup looks like a solid list of south city's left-of-center rock bands, this show offers something a little more immersive. This night is technically the latest in the Luminary's LAB sessions, which works with local artists to help transform the space into the innards of a band's collective skull. This night is meant to reflect the vibe felt in Hamburg, Germany's Star-Club, which operated from 1969 to 1987, hosting several rock legends from throughout the world. The Brainstems will perform two sets -- a cover set that reflects the band's early influences and a more uniform string of original songs. 

2929 South Jefferson is hosting "Berned in STL," an event with several bands including the Bubbleheads, LifeWithout among many others in support of Bernie Sanders and his run for the presidency of the United States. 


Heavy Horse (Last Show)
Path of Might

@ Dugan Haus / Ask Somebody

8 p.m. / free / all ages
Heavy Horse offers a distilled style of post-hardcore that reminisces the best qualities of "screamo" before the genre became a Hot Topic buzz word. If you've ever held a love for harsh, guttural screams over melodic riffs warped through static, buzz and the calming hum of constant feedback, then this show is a must-see. The style has imitators abound, but few bands have taken the sound in such a genuine direction. Heavy Horse will be missed -- consider this your last warning.

Taboo (ME)
Biggie Stardust
Catholic Guilt
DJ Coppertone

@ William A. Kerr Foundation / 21 O'Fallon Street

10 p.m. / $8-$10 / all ages
Taboo drapes dramatic spoken word over a murky no-wave backdrop. The result is an enigmatic squalor that feels more occultist than rock, invoking more than just a cross-armed, head-bob. While all that might seem a little pretentious, Taboo executes while giving absolutely zero shit, managing to present its meticulously crafted mess in a way that feels more punk than punk. Few bands live in this mysterious middle ground of music, but Taboo does so while embracing all these bumps and bruises and tiny imperfections -- and uses those rough edges to its advantage.

The Spektral Quartet performs an early show at 7 p.m. at the 560 Music Center, hosted by New Music Circle.