Alt-Nation: Music Meets Politics … and More

altOne Providence Experience

The race for Mayor of Providence is all the rage. It’s transcended state boundaries becoming a national point of interest. Just last weekend my brother had a conversation about the race with Cheap Trick’s Rick Nielsen (he’s anti-Buddy in case you were wondering) and Dave Grohl. Local musicians are also doing their part to raise awareness, as the Columbus Collective this Thursday presents a night filled with great local music. In addition, Democratic nominee for Mayor, Jorge Elorza, will be in the house fielding questions from the band. There will be some heavy hitters of the local music scene between Death Vessel, The Low Anthem, Roz Raskin and more. All the bands will pose questions to Elorza. Here’s hoping they open up the floor to some questions because many of these bands have announced their support for Elorza already. It would seem like a missed opportunity for the judge to not take some questions from undecided voters. I’m not sure seeing his supporters lob batting practice fastballs at the judge is going to sway anyone on the fence. Either way, this should be a cool way to see Elorza in a different setting and check out some great local music.

One Providence Experience featuring music by Black Pus, The Low Anthem, Medusah Black, Death Vessel, Roz Raskin, and more TBA will perform at the Columbus Theatre on October 23. The doors are at 7pm with the music starting at 7pm. The event is free.


Alt-Nation Presents: Nightmare on Knight Street

Once a month I take over the tunes at the E & O Tap on Knight Street in Providence, playing everything from Motown to Motorhead. Obscurities, local tunes, cult classics and the hits for a period not to exceed two hours and fifty-seven minutes at the best damn dive bar on Knight Street. There will be a Halloween theme to this month’s tunes. The music will start around 9pm and go to midnight.

Thurston Moore

Sonic Youth axe lord Thurston Moore comes to Providence on the heels of his new release, The Best Day (Matador Records). Moore’s band includes an indie all-star rhythm section with Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley and My Bloody Valentine bassist Deb George. I’ve heard the first single, “Speak to the Wild,” which is full Moore’s trademark guitar sorcery groove. With little hope of a Sonic Youth reunion anytime soon, this is likely your only chance to catch one of indie guitar swing gods shredding in your face.

The Thurston Moore Band and PCPC (members of Parquet Courts and PC Worship) come to The Met Café on October 24.

Chuck Ragan

Hot Water Music front man and Revival Tour founder Chuck Ragan is a busy man who has managed to make stops in these parts several times in the last few years. This time around, it’s just Ragan slinging it alone with his guitar and harmonica. The man has got the soul to pull it off without the battering backing locomotive of Hot Water Music. This will be a night of punk rock spirit presented through the stripped-down singer/songwriter medium.

Chuck Ragan and The Varsity Club come to Manchester 65 in West Warwick on October 24.

Six Star General

Six Star General are one my favorites in these parts and it’s great to see them back playing out after a series maladies. Six Star General bring it with combination of squalls of post-punk fuzz and Firehose style bass lines. Weld Square is another straight-out rocker. I remember loving them the first time I saw them because they reminded me of the Stooges and everyone else on that bill sucked.  Should be another rockin’ night at Dusk!

Six Star General, Weld Square, Bad Motherfucker, and We’re Traveled will rock the night at Dusk on October 24.

Beta Motel

Beta Motel are Providence’s newest electro-sexual rock ‘n’ roll band. Beta Motel remind me of the twisted stepchild of new wave. Fun booty shaking jams that will make you want to tear it up on the dance floor. Beta Motel have some similarities to singer Josh Kemp’s old band Mahi Mahi, but on the whole, I like them better.  Feel the funk for yourself at AS220!

Beta Motel, Ssleaze, Yerri, and Krokodil Dundee hit AS220 on October 24.

Goddamn Gallows

Goddamn Gallows will be returning to town to spit their own brand of punk, psychobilly, and brimstone. Goddamn Gallows are one of the most intense live acts you’re going to see anywhere. One tune will have elements of bluegrass and the next will work in some metal. Goddamn Gallows’ real weapon is the intensity of their live performances. Sasquatch & The Sick-A-Billys are a good match here, as they’ve been to know to belt out some of the same influences. This show is going feature some old fashion rock ‘n’ roll mayhem!

Goddamn Gallows, Sasquatch & The Sick-A-Billys, Dog Day Afternoon, Spitshiner rock Firehouse 13 on October 25.

Ask The Dead/ Neutral Nation

This shows spans the generation of local punk rock between young guns Ask The Dead and local legends Neutral Nation. Ask The Dead are progressive punk/heavy rock whose album, The Leans, is worth checking out. There isn’t much I could say about Neutral Nation that hasn’t been said, there is even a movie if you really need a crash course. For those who grew up in the ’80s who were into punk rock and skate boarding, Neutral Nation were and still are an institution. Think classic old school punk rock/hardcore to the max with a smile. Professor Roots add some roots rockin’ reggae to mellow things out.

Ask The Dead, Neutral Nation, and Professor Roots bring the punk and reggae to the Parlour on October 25.

Cass McCombs/Meat Puppets

Cass McCombs and Meat Puppets are coming to town on a co-headlining tour. I’m stoked to see country punks the Meat Puppets who haven’t been in these parts in eons. Meat Puppets are unfairly most famous for Nirvana covering three singles off their classic sophomore album II. The tribute was well deserved, but I wonder how many people only know say “Lake of Fire” from Nirvana’s Unplugged in New York. The whole album was genius and I prefer the originals. As for Cass McCombs, his most recent release, 2013’s Big Wheel and Others, gave us a portrait of an artist at his most devastatingly powerful. Brimming with pain and passion, truth and beauty, desperation and humor, the 22-song collection is McCombs going off the rails down roadsides of rock ‘n’ roll, blues, jazz, country and more on its nomadic quest for truth and understanding. For the tour, McCombs and Meat Puppets have released a split 7” that will be available at the show and on 10/28 via Domino Records.

Cass McCombs and Meat Puppets come to The Met Café on October 28.

I’d like to wish a speedy recovery to my friend Mary Gooding.

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