WEDNESDAY: Hardcore lifer Avail drives its van up to the Ottobar with the Draft, Pink Razors, and Mr. Difficult. Lair of the Minotaur crushes skulls and kills your dungeon master at the Talking Head with Unearthly Trance, Doomsday 1999, and Flowers in the Attic. Former Gap Band member Charlie Wilson kicks it for the grown and sexy at Rams Head Live with Abenaa.
THURSDAY: KRS-One brings edutainment to the Ottobar for those who like a healthy dollop of guilt and didacticism alongside their hip-hop. Spires That in the Sunset Rise trippily folks along at the Talking Head with 420 Sphinx BC and Larkin Grimm. The Reputation indie-pops at Charm City Space. More platonic-ideal emo at Sonar, this time with Socratic and a support team of Park, Gatsby Gets the Green Light, Assassinate Caesar, and Something Less. Rap legends Rob Base and Tone-Loc bask in the twilight of a perpetual 1989 at Rams Head Live. The Safes play the Sidebar with Sick Sick Birds, Thee Lexington Arrows, and the Five Maseratis. Pianist Jenny Lin and guitarist Elliott Sharp perform a duo recital at An die Musik.
FRIDAY: Clockcleaner shatters ears at the Talking Head with Double Dagger, Mountain High, and Hex Screw. An early show on Sonar’s main stage for the emo kids with All Time Low, Ever We Fall, Race the Sun, and Away From Amyclae, and a late show on Sonar’s club stage for the acid jazz adults with Sia and Eagle and Talon. Hey, it’s a hardcore show at Charm City Space with Ruiner, Ambitions, Permanent, the Scare, and Alarmed.
SATURDAY: Acid Mothers Temple gets fried and plays some jams at the Ottobar with the Antarticans and the Convocation. Enjoy metallic punk as Big Bear roars at the Talking Head with Ecstatic Sunshine (see No Cover, page 35), Michael Columbia, and Horns of Happiness. Charm City Space holds a very loud Hurricane Katrina benefit show with Xeper, Soulace Shin, and Lekha. Two duos—one made up of Bruce Eisenbeil and Soon Kim and one made up of Michael Muniak and Audrey Chen—improvise at the Red Room at Normals Books and Records. More punk for your buck at the Sidebar with Eight Fingers Down, Rutabega Suicide, Dingus, and Ramrod. A night of left-field jazz at An die Musik with a trio of saxophonist Ellery Eskelin, keyboardist/accordionist Andrea Parkins, and percussionist Jim Black. Gavin Elder plays a free show at Orion Sound Studios. Playful Queens of the Stone Age side project Eagles of Death Metal isn’t really death metal at Washington’s Black Cat with Rye Coalition.
SUNDAY: Bif Naked, the mutant spawn of Pink and Avril Lavigne, brings her tattoos to Sonar with Brit Black and Vincent Black Shadow.Jefferson Starship tries to rebuild this city on rock ‘n’ roll at Rams Head Live. Reggae legends Toots and the Maytals skank into Washington’s 9:30 Club with Soulive, Grace Potter, and the Nocturnals.
MONDAY: Having given up the fake hip-hop, the ex-Unicorns in Islands get back to the indie rock at the Ottobar with Why? and Cadence Weapon. There’s all the mook metal you can take at Rams Head Live with Trapt and Shinedown.
TUESDAY: Agent Orange is another “wow, they’re still around?” name at the Ottobar with Double Dagger, the Spark, and Ramrod. Indie rock from Tigersaw and Small Sur brings the noise level down a little bit at Charm City Space. Floetry smoothes it out on a neo-soul tip at Rams Head Live with Goapele.
WEDNESDAY: Danish psychobillies the HorrorPops play for the kids in pegged jeans at the Ottobar with the Briefs and Left Alone. Dylan throws down the darkest darkside drum ’n’ bass at Sonar with Rev E and Thermo. Heroes to band geeks everywhere, They Might Be Giants are still insufferably clever at the 9:30 Club with Michael Leviton and Last Car.
IN THE WINGS: If it’s hard to imagine Devendra Banhart playing to a venue as cavernous as Sonar June 10, it’s even harder to imagine the purported thing the freak-folk pinup hobbit has got going on with Lindsay Lohan. (For more info call  327-8333 or visit www.sonar.us.) My dad will be pleased that a reunited Hot Tuna is playing Rams Head Live June 23, considering he lost most of his short-term memory while listening to America’s Choice. (For more info call  244-8854 or visit www.ramsheadlive.com.) If you missed the performance at the Kennedy Center at the tail end of last year, Congolese scrap-metal and thumb-piano ensemble Konono No. 1 radiates goodwill and endless grooves from the Black Cat stage July 21. (For more info call  667-7960 or visit www.blackcatdc.com.)
Keeping Up (12/2/2009)
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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