Alt-Nation: Don’t Stay Home

Darklands

Shoegaze rockers to their core, Darklands craft melody out of fuzz-ridden noise. Darklands’ sound owes much to the noise pop of My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive and that early ’90s English noise guitar scene. I’ve always dug that adventurous style of guitar playing where the sound drives the song. Badlands have an EP, St. Thaddeus, that came out a couple of years ago and hopefully there will be some new music coming from Darklands sometime in the not so distant future. Till then, check out Darklands at Aurora.

Darklands, Sneeze, Black Beach, and Fault rock Aurora on February 3.

Lux Lives

This February marks the 8th anniversary of the passing of legendary Cramps vocalists, Lux Interior. Interior was one of the most dynamic frontmen in the history of rock ‘n’ roll. The Cramps took shaved-to-the-bone rock ‘n’ roll and whipped it up in a manic psychobilly frenzy that was as much of a spectacle as it was spectacular live. Lux Lives is an annual celebration of the life of Interior and goes down this year at POP. This year, in addition to the killer tunes from deejays Ty Jesso, Kogar the Swinging Ape, and DJ Hula Bomb, there will be an exhibition of rare Cramps memorabilia on display at POP. Once again, the bands will be Providence garage rock granddaddies Thee Fabulous Itchies and the surf horror downbeat of The Evil Streaks. All proceeds will go to Lux and his wife’s (guitarist Poison Ivy) favorite charity, Best Friends Animal Society. Last year the three East Coast Lux Lives shows raised almost three grand and since the inception of Lux Lives, over $10,000 has been raised for Best Friends.

Soul Power and Jungle Juice present Lux Lives featuring performances by Thee Fabulous Itchies and The Evil Streaks, DJs, and more at POP in Providence on February 4.

Wicked Petty

The self-proclaimed ultimate Boston Tom Petty Tribute band, Wicked Petty, is money for a good time provided one likes Tom Petty. I don’t know what kind of monster doesn’t like Tom Petty, but those Cyclops probably want to sit this one out. Wicked Petty is pretty much a good night out; you’ll hear all the hits and a few obscure ones that you wouldn’t hear at a regular Petty and The Heartbreakers shows. I’m going to go out on a limb and declare Wicked Petty as a better Tom Petty vehicle than Petty’s own side band, Mudcrutch.

Wicked Petty will rock the Met Café on February 4.

Joyce Manner

Joyce Manner comes to town in support of their fourth album, Cody (Epitaph Records), which came out last fall. Joyce Manner specializes in belting out infectious indie rock. Joyce Manner remind me of bands like Weezer, Bayside and maybe a low-fi version of Better Than Ezra. If you like loud, melodic guitars with hook, check these guys at Fete.

Joyce Manor, AJJ and Mannequin Pussy unleash the rock at Fete on February 8.

LuxDeluxe

Hailing from western Massachusetts, LuxDeluxe bust a move that is reminiscent of bands like NRBQ, Beirut and Wilco. In fact, this might be the most obvious NRBQ-influenced band that I can think of. LuxDeluxe spice it up by throwing some funky grooves into straightforward rock tunes. LuxDeluxe could be the next dimension of modern rock for better or worse. For a sample of LuxDeluxe, check out last year’s It’s a Girl or just go to Aurora to catch them in the flesh. If you are going to do that, get there early for local rockers Ravi Shavi.

LuxDeluxe, Ravi Shavi and Goon Planet bring the rock to Aurora on February 8.

Blackletter

Blackletter shows are like a nor’easter with psychedelic waves of hard and glam rock swirling through the room.  Blackletter has one EP out called Station 15, and hopefully they’ll do another record soon. The spectacle of the live performance is what Blackletter is all about, so just go check them out.

Blackletter, Holy Roller High and The Holographic rock AS220’s Main stage on February 11.

Email music news to mclarkin33@gmail.com

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