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.