1.Thursday, March 9: Holy Roller High, Call Security, Wild Sun, Forest Fires; 8pm doors / 9pm; $8; All ages; The Met, 1005 Main St, Pawtucket. On April 1, 95.5 WBRU will hold its 2017 Rock Hunt Finals at The Met. The process before the finals moved into an online component with voting instead of the semi-finals round, which means I can’t do my usual odds of who will win as I won’t know who will be in until well after press time. Here are some of the best current alt-rock local bands who might be involved (or might have already been in the finals and are not eligible, honestly my memory is shot). Providence’s Holy Roller High have been doing alt punk ‘n’ roll with a touch of folktry for almost three years now. Providence’s Call Security, I think, would be favorites to win the Rock Hunt this year. South County fuzz rockers Wild Sun are great and would definitely be a finals contender, and maybe have already been in the finals. I should lay off the booze. And I am almost certain Forest Fires have been in the rock hunt finals, and would bet $20 they were, I think two years ago? I think I was there? Where am I…?
2. Saturday, March 11: Farewell to Local 121 party; 21+; Local 121, 121 Washington St, PVD. Local 121 is sadly closing its doors after 10 years of business. If you are a grown-up, you know Local 121 as one of the — if not the — first of Providence’s “farm to table” restaurants. Or if you’re like me, you drank there before and after downtown events or perhaps went to see concerts in the basement or DJs upstairs in the bar. I have many great memories of drinking there — the time I brought Julian Edleman and Danny Amendola from the New England Patriots over from Lupo’s after a concert (they promised Pats tickets for my son, liars), or the time I tricked Mike Kelly into giving me 15 tap waters in less than 15 minutes only to be yelled at by the manager Bryan Minto who needed the glasses for customers. March 11 is their final day of business. And there’s no better way to send it off than with Local house regulars DJ Nook and Music Please. Make sure to Facetime / Snapchat / telegram DJ Dox, who I am sure will be feeling nostalgic stuck out on the west coast, as much as possible.
3. Saturday, March 18: Jacuzzi Boys, Party Pigs, Neutrinos DJ’s Ty Jesso & Dr. Fuzz; $8; 21+; Dusk, 301 Harris Ave, PVD. I am pretty bummed I am going to miss this show while at SXSW. Miami’s Jacuzzi Boys are fantastic on record, but even better live. In November, the band released their 4th record Ping Pong. Providence Party Pigs (more party, less pig) and Cattleboro’s (I’m sticking with calling that town that, blame Cactus Attack) Neutrinos open up. And Ty Jesso and Dr. Fuzz will be spinning all night. Please bring all your friends so more garage bands want to play Providence!
4. Tuesday, March 28: Vince Staples, Kilo Kish; All ages; Sold out, various second market costs; Paradise, 967 Commonwealth Ave, Boston. Hip-hop star Vince Staples is coming back to New England in support of the recently released EP Prima Donna. Hailing from Long Beach, Staples turned heads with his critically acclaimed second album Summertime 06 featuring single “Norf Norf.” I saw him in Austin headline a Spotify showcase in which he mocked the company the entire set (as well as the audience), and pondered whether it the first time Spotify wrote a check with more than three digits on it for any artist. He was also a frequent contributor to the unfortunately now defunct HBO / Bill Simmons series “Any Given Wednesday.” Beyond being a talented rapper, he’s hysterical and deserves his own TV show — fingers crossed on that happening.
5. Saturday, April 1: The Proletariat, Benny Sizzler, Disaster Strikes; 21+; The Parlor Newport, 200 Broadway, Newport. Late last year, Southern New England post punks The Proletariat reunited for their first shows in three decades. Those shows went so well, they added a handful of dates that while small in number, are all over the place. Montreal, Philly, Seattle and fortunately for us, Newport, are some of the homes for the six shows. Often I don’t like political punk bands even when I share the same ideology as them. I often think it doesn’t end up blending well. However, the Proletariat are an exception and maybe its because of how they were formed. The band started as a group of friends with a shared leftist political ideology. They had no musical background, but set out to make music. The Parlor is small, so you might want to get an advance ticket. And with Newport’s amazing punk and roll but mostly punkers Benny Sizzler on before them, all the better reason to do so. Boston political punks Disaster Strikes round out the bill.
Also worth checking out! March 3 — The Tossers @ Firehouse 13; March 6 — Regina Spektor @ Lupo’s; March 7 — Ghost Bath, Amigo The Devil, Wreak, Tovarish @The Met; March 18 — Shaggy @ The Met; March 30 — Doomsday Student, Way Out @ The Parlour; March 30 — Laura Stevenson @ The Parlor Newport; March 31 — Wet @ The Met