WEDNESDAY: The Cult Classics get heard at the Ottobar with Random Hero, Mr. Difficult, and the Repercussions. Mason lays bricks at Sonar with the Killing Moon, February Falling, and Boxer Rebellion. Houseguest crashes at the Sidebar with Catching Thieves and Edison. Nada Surf plays the 8X10 with Rogue Wave and King of France. Feist shimmies at Washington’s Black Cat with Jason Collett.
THURSDAY: Misery Index totes up the anguish numbers at the Ottobar with Trephine, Triac, the Spark, Deep Sleep, Dar Sombra, and Avec. Adrian Belew leads the School of Rock All-Stars at Sonar, so expect a lot of “tasty licks.” The Love Drunks get wasted on life at the Sidebar with Vincent Black Shadow and Thee Lexington Arrows. Papa Grows Funk might be a pot metaphor at the 8X10 with the All Mighty Senators. Say goodbye to Mest on its farewell tour at Towson’s Recher Theatre with Allister, Scary Kids, Scaring Kids, and the Classic Crime.
FRIDAY: Living Things are still living and still things at the Ottobar with Fascist Fascist and Sick Sick Birds. Rotten Shambles rock the Talking Head with Chelsea Graveyard, Ironhead, and Trailer Park Opera. Jah Works show you how to live the ital way at Sonar with Dub Nysus, Ballyhoo, and Opposable Thumbs. Big Daddy Chrome does it real big at the Sidebar with Seth Kess and His Black Market Band, Free Mexican Tarots, and Cowboy Amnesia. The Pietasters sport those annoying little porkpie hats at the 8X10 with Can’t Hang, the Players, and the Rootworkers.
SATURDAY: Dynasty shoots J.R. at the Talking Head with the New Flesh and Fascist Fascist. Another week, another bajillion band bill of emo you’ve never heard of ’cause you don’t have a MySpace account, this time with Aberdien, One Way Letter, Underscore, All Time Low, 5 Days Ahead, and Fell Far Behind on Sonar’s club stage. A quartet of Tim Berne on sax, Baikida Carroll on trumpet, Michael Formanek on double bass, and Tom Rainey on drums cooks up some serious jazz at An die Musik. Dallas’ Mazinga II plays Wham City with Bloody Baby. Nothingface greets a sea of black T-shirts at the Recher Theatre with Silent Civilian, Afreudianslip, and Dead by Wednesday. The AV Club holds its CD-release party at the Sidebar with Blondsai, the Tombs, and Useless.
SUNDAY: Report Suspicious Activity does its part for national security at the Ottobar with the Bomb, Fascist Fascist, and the Mean Spirits. It’s billed as “all remaining members,” but we’ll see how many members of the Wu-Tang Clan actually show up for its tribute tour to the late ODB at Sonar with Streetlife and Mathematics. Get ready for a night of passion, plus greasy pecs and the deafening screams of teenage girls, with Mr. “So Sick,” Ne-Yo, at Rams Head Live. Flutist Sharon W. Pabon and harpist Melissa Dvorak give a classical recital at An die Musik. The cheeky chappies in Supergrass ride the new wave of Britpop hype into the nation’s capitol with Pilotdrift at the 9:30 Club.
MONDAY: Phonograph puts the needle on the record at Sonar with Private Eleanor and the Mazeltov Cocktails.
TUESDAY: Celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with crusty old seer and dub performance artist Lee “Scratch” Perry at Sonar with Dub Is a Weapon. Yes Is a Pleasant Country has an odd name, which we’ll blame on Francophone ESL, plays a jazz concert at An die Musik, and, hey, “your ticket price includes French pastries and a complimentary glass of wine,” so there you go. Mike Love (we’re guessing not the Beach Boy) and Tear of the Brown Eye play Dinner and a Movie at the Sidebar, in-between with film screenings and food.
WEDNESDAY: Mötley Crüe turns 1st Mariner Arena into the city’s biggest strip club.
IN THE WINGS: Freak-folk collective Jackie-O Motherfucker crowds into the Talking Head March 21, but don’t miss opener Sir Richard Bishop, as the Sun City Girl’s devil blues and mutant Django Reinhardt moves can shame Jackie-O right off the stage. (For more info call  962-5588 or visit www.talkingheadclub.com.) Mighty rumble or ambient grunge? Isis roars into the Ottobar with the noise-hop voodoo of Dalek, plus Zombi and Torche May 2. (For more info call  662-0069 or visit www.theottobar.com.) Now that America has drank the James Blunt Kool-Aid (wtf, people?), the unctuous British crooner oozes his creepy sincerity all over the 9:30 Club March 13. (For more info call  265-0930 or visit www.930.com.)
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Nearly 20 years after his death, Arthur Russell finally gets the biography he deserves
Human Architecture (7/29/2009)
The protagonist isn't the only one obsessed with capturing life in two dimensions in Asterios Polyp
The Unseen (11/5/2008)
Catherine Pancake and Jai Brooks Capture a Slice of Black Baltimore Lesbian Life in Jay Dreams
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