ELECTRIC SIX – TURQUOISE
Depending on the count (in this case excluding Kickstarter, live, and cover albums), Turquoise is Electric Six’s 15th album of original material. In the 20 years since their breakthrough debut, Fire, it hasn’t been all gay bars and Taco Bells on fire. Singer Dick Valentine has sung about buying the drugs, after hours at McDonald’s, attacking aliens, vampires, witches, and other walks on the wild side. The music is essentially alternative rock with everything from disco, R&B, and electronica ground into a giant booty-shake-a-thon. They are the answer to, “What if KISS and the Talking Heads formed an ABBA tribute band?”
Turquoise is ripe with their staple party material like the rocking “Dr. K” and the hillbilly boogie-woogie “Born to Be Ridiculed.” “Staten Island Ass Squad” is the next great Electric Six house party anthem. “Units of Time” has almost a punks-playingWillie-Nelson vibe that works. “Child of Hunger” pays homage to `80s hair metal ballads and name drops Greta Van Fleet with Valentine’s sardonic lines like: “God woke up with an epic hangover.” Of course it’s never all fun and games with Electric Six. After all, they once stopped playing “Rock ‘n’ Roll Evacuation,” for the entire Obama Administration because of the lyrics: “Mr. President I don’t like you, you don’t know how to rock.” So it’s no surprise that several songs on Turquoise deal with politics and the COVID pandemic.
I never thought there would be a great rocker about living through a pandemic, but “Panic! Panic!” accomplishes the impossible. The title track sums up getting through lockdown with Valentine crooning “the world tipped on its side and went tits up, to protect myself I wear turquoise.” Turquoise may not be the best Electric Six album but it is the next in a long line of classics. The only thing better than a new record from the Electric Six is seeing them live. So this October, win music bingo by getting Turquoise and seeing Electric Six at Askew all in one night!
Electric Six and The Surfrajettes will command the dance floor at Askew in PVD on October 14.
THREE POINTS OF MADNESS – 10 YEARS OF MADNESS
Three Points of Madness celebrates a decade of metal, mayhem, and madness with a special celebration at Dusk. Three Points of Madness will record and shoot a video during the show to share the experience with all their lunatics down the line. Last year, Three Points of Madness put out their fourth album, Reefer Madness, which is a metal masterpiece. I love how each tune on the album is so cinematic, with titles like “Test Tube Zombies,” “Witch’s Tit,” and “Snakes of Medusa.” A lot of the album sounds like the members of Iron Maiden and Alice in Chains got together with zombie aliens to form a conceptual prog-metal band. My favorites off Reefer Madness are “Off with Your Head,” “Satan’s Minions,” and the lone slow jam, “Believe in Me” – which has a “Silent Lucidity” era Queensryche feel. Don’t miss the party!
Three Points of Madness and Verscythe rock Dusk in PVD on October 14.
One of the coolest women in alternative rock playing the coolest store/space in RI – how can you beat this? I’ve been a fan of Juliana Hatfield since maybe the 1900s. Her work marries ’70s AM radio harmonies with alternative guitar rock. She’s put out so many great albums over the years. From starting off in the Blake Babies with tunes like “Star” through the ‘90s with the Juliana Hatfield Three and the album Only Everything, Hatfield has put out so much amazing music. In addition to continually releasing her own music, in recent years Hatfield has been putting out tribute albums where she re-interprets the songs of artists she admires. To date, she has released tribute albums of The Police and Olivia Newton-John, and will release Juliana Sings ELO, featuring the songs of Electric Light Orchestra, in November.
Juliana Hatfield performs at POP in PVD on October 14. There will be a pre-performance conversation with author and Blake Babies drummer Freda Love. For tickets, visit: stores. emporiumofpopularculture.com/ juliana-hatfield-w-freda-love.
AL STEWART & THE EMPTY POCKETS
The Greenwich Odeum has it all for fans of ‘70s radio rock with Al Stewart & The Empty Pockets. Stewart’s “Year of the Cat” is one of my favorites from that era with its Bogart references.
Al Stewart & The Empty Pockets play the hits at the Greenwich Odeum in East Greenwich on October 14.
In a week of bangers, this show is as good as it gets. The Dollyrots crush the hooks of That Dog, American Hi-Fi, and Letters to Cleo into a sonic vending machine that spits out anthems for the dance floor. The local openers in Heather Rose in Clover and Sourpunch are equally awesome, so get there early!
The Dollyrots, Heather Rose In Clover, and Sourpunch kick out the jams on October 15 at Alchemy in PVD.
SHARKS COME CRUISIN’ – I Wish I Was On Gansett Bay Album Release Party
Sea Shanty maestros, Sharks Come Cruisin’, have a new album and are throwing a party. Sharks Come Cruisin’ shows are some of the funnest in town due to audience participation. We’ll have a review of the album closer to the show.
Sharks Come Cruisin’ celebrate the release of I Wish I Was On Gansett Bay with a special show at The Narragansett Brewery in their home port of PVD on October 21.
SMELLS LIKE NIRVANA
I can’t think of a better way to ring in Halloween than catching a set of Nirvana! Nirvana, of course, had a famous hometown show on Halloween that I believe has since been released as a live album. This will be a fun night!
Nirvana Smells Like Nirvana and Dead Original rock the Met Cafe in Pawtucket on October 21.
THE HEAD AND THE HEART
Indie folkers: The Head And The Heart rings in Halloween with a show at The Vets. For Halloween shows, I always think it would be funny to dress up as a band that is the polar opposite of the one I’m seeing. For The Head And The Heart, I’d choose Poison. The band is touring behind their fifth studio album, Every Shade of Blue. I love “Virginia (Wind In the Night)” and “Same Hurt” off this biscuit.
The Head And The Heart ring in Halloween at Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium in PVD on October 31.
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