Alt-Nation: Avoid Your Family with Some Shows

I was getting ready to close out the year scrambling to get some reviews in that I missed for our final 2014 issue till those bastards at headquarters informed me … we’re going twice a month. Greeeaat, as I dropped my eggnog. Holiday humor — I’ve actually been writing new columns most weeks at motifri.com. Anyways keep a P.M.A., enjoy the holidays, and support live music!

Wolfman Chuck Presents Weedfinger 7 Inch

I’ve recently had a relapse in my music buying addiction. Everyone else may be on heroin with this current epidemic, but I can’t stop buying vinyl. So it was nice to get a record for free in the mail with this compilation Weedfinger 7-inch. The album kicks off with some intro music from Gravesideservice. The jams really pick up with Tony Jones and The Cretin 3 contribution, “Dead End Drive In.”  The tune sounds like a cross between the Ramones and the Misfits while Tony Jones is dropping references to Second Beach. They used to have a drive in Middletown down the road from Second Beach. Tony Jones is a busy guy; you can catch his radio show online at www.rifreeradio.org and he was on the statewide ballot in the last election for the office of Lieutenant Governor. Vague Perception’s contribution, “Colder than a Witches Tit” reminds me of GG Allin’s old backing band, The Jabbers. Wolfman Chuck sounds like Tom Waits on speed meets Guided By Voices on “Succubus.” Local legends Neutral Nation keep it short and sweet on “Why,” which may or may not last 15 seconds. Wolfman Chuck has another quick stripped-down about stabbing someone with “You.” I dug “Paler Still” by Imbolg that has a fuzzy Misfits demo type feel. Wolfman Chuck has assembled something that I’ve never seen before with Weedfinger – a 7-inch record that has eight songs. And on purple vinyl for the win!

Gaskill and Bad Motherfucker

Not feeling the holidays spirit? Well Gaskill are playing their first show in 12 years at No Problemo to change all that. The last time I saw this New Bedford bred metal warhorse, they were tearing up a ruckus at the legendary Safari Lounge. Members of Gaskill have been active in the music scene over the years in bands like Blackhouse, Horror Business, and my one of favorite local bands ever, The Hidden. The latter featured both bassist Mario Costa and vocalist Kevin Grant. Gaskill were an aggressive mix of metal mixed with sludge punk. It’s somewhere between Slayer and Jesus Lizard, but Grant is more of a pure crooner and that’s a game changer. If you can get your hands on Gaskill album, Granite Iron Oak, by all means do so. I’m not sure if that ever made iTunes because it pre-dates the collapse of the music industry as we know it. Records are cool, but what I remember about Gaskill live is the manic intensity of their live performance with an eardrum rattling rhythm section, speed sludge throwing guitars, and Grant throwing himself around like a mental patient trying to escape his strait jacket.

Get there early for Bad Motherfucker who will start the slaying. Bad Motherfucker remind me of a combination of Mudhoney and post-Raw Power (pre-reunion) Iggy and The Stooges. Hell, “Mulch” sort of sounds like an outtake by Simple Minds. This show will rage and it’s free to boot. If that’s not enough, I hear the burritos at No Problemo are phenomenal. If you can’t get out to New Bedford, Bad Motherfucker is also playing with TEAZER at Dusk in Providence on December 6th.

Gaskill and Bad Motherfucker will play a free show at No Problemo in New Bedford on Dec 13.

Low Cut Connie

There is something to be said for having an interesting band name. I see so many band names in listings and think, “This can’t be possibly be good.” If they can’t even some up with a decent band name, I shudder to think what their tunes sound like. Low Cut Connie may not be a great band name, but it was enough to interest me initially. Hailing from Philadelphia, Low Cut Connie sounds like up-tempo bar rock ’n’ roll with a touch of soul and blues added for extra kick. Get there early for Tyler James Kelly and Jess Powers’ opening set!

Low Cut Connie, Daniel Romano, Tyler James Kelly & Jess Powers will rock Fete on Dec 12.

Sadie & The Hotheads

Ever wonder what it would sound like if the actress Elizabeth McGovern from Downtown Abbey (and a ton of other things) over the last 30 years fronted a band? Me neither. That doesn’t mean it’s not good or worth checking out. Think indie folk rock, and not too shabby at it if that’s your bag. There is even a VIP option that allows one to meet the band and get your picture with McGovern. Check out themetri.com or the Lupo’s box office for more information.

Sadie & The Hotheads are at The Met Café on Dec 13.

Sharks Come Cruisin

Providence’s sea shanty troubadours Sharks Come Cruisin return to action at AS220. If you’ve never seen Sharks Come Cruisin, their shows are a hoot! Think mixing in The Pogues, Against Me, and 19th century New England fishermen swaying and drinking while belting out traditional sea shanties. Sharks Come Cruisin even set up an easel with all the words from the song as audience participation is always a staple of their shows.

Sharks Come Cruisin, Tyler Daniel Bean, and Oklahoma Car Crash are at AS220’s Psychic Readings on Dec 15.

The Airborne Toxic Event

I caught the The Airborne Toxic Event last time they were in town and it wasn’t really my bag. They are decent at what they do from the perspective of a U2/Coldplay kind of thing with a string section. I just liked it better when it was called Arcade Fire. That said, The Airborne Toxic Event has their audience and I’m just including it here to let people know it is happening and because WBRU always sneaks at least one killer band on their holiday shows.

95.5 WBRU presents The Airborne Toxic Event, Robert DeLong, Panama Wedding, & Forest Fires rocking some holiday cheer at Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel on Dec 16.

The Get Right Band – Bass Treble Angel Devil

The Get Right Band roll into town to support their recent release, Bass Treble Angel Devil, at The Met Cafe. Hailing from Asheville, North Carolina, The Get Right Band mix ska, white guy funk, and rock in a stew and stir it up. There are bits of Sublime and the Chili Peppers in the groove. Check them out at The Met and bust a move!

The Get Right Band rocks the Met Café on Dec 16.

2014 Local CD Gift Ideas:

Bill Keough – The Slow Get Up

Ravi Shavi –  Independent

Deadlands – Faceless Angels

The Viennagram – Learn To Tame The Patterns

Atlantic Thrills – self titled

Email music news to mclarkin33@gmail.com

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