WEDNESDAY: Schizo new-wave/rockabilly guys with a serious sci-fi jones, the Phenomenauts land their ship at the Ottobar with punks Left Alone, No Trigger, and Filmore. The second monthly installment of the It's Baltimore Baby Live! hip-hop showcase throws down at Sonar featuring performances by Jeneba Suma, Mullyman, the ladies of Golden Seal, Don Brody, Skarr Akbar, and 106 and Park freestyle champion Backland. A big, loud noise in tiny Charm City Space when the scary intense hardcore of Thank God, Perestroika, and the Wayward comes crashing down. Indie-pop band Karmella's Game plays its roller-rink keyboards at stadium volume at the Sidebar with Park, Assassinate Caesar, and Morning for the Masses.
THURSDAY: Winnowed down to just two, local pop-rock quartet Avec is now also playing as Avecduet, and tonight it holds a CD-release show for the twosome's new CD at the Talking Head with Forget Cassettes and the Headwounds. There's plenty of peanut-butter-smeared thug-rock at the Ottobar with Daughters, the instrumental indie-prog of Russian Circles, Lovers and Killers, and Lilu Dallas. More punk and hardcore bang for your measly buck at Charm City Space with We the People, Steel Nation, and Another Reason to Hate Machines. The Feral, Entertainment, Felix Sarco, and Black Powder Fuzzbox all pack into the Sidebar. Master jazz pianist Matthew Shipp plays two solo sets at An die Musik. Sharp and economical like the long-abandoned factories of its native Chicago, Shellac of North America brings its songs of baseball and Canada to a rare local appearance at Washington's Black Cat with Uzeda.
FRIDAY: The Gliss, Crucified Looks, Life in Bed, and Closer I Get all get down with some kind of rock or rock 'n' roll or rawk or something at the Sidebar. Acid-soaked California heavy jammers Comets on Fire chase the tail of the Quicksilver Messenger Service at the Black Cat with (The Sound of) Kaleidoscope and Benjy Ferree.
SATURDAY: Savory James, Baby Aspirin, and the Soft Pyramids all play at Charm City Space to benefit the relief effort in war-torn parts of Sri Lanka. Two-headed guitar beast Ecstatic Sunshine celebrates the release of its new CD, Freckle Wars, at Wham City with More Dogs, Santa Dads, and Lizz King. Shineola (featuring City Paper phographer Sam Holden) kicks out some bluesy hard-rock jams at the Ottobar with Our German Lover, Tits n' Tires, and Tube Dutch.
SUNDAY: The Ottobar hosts night of bands featuring three members or less with the Expotentials, Headwounds, Mongoloidian Glow, New Age Hillbilly, Darsombra, Statues Never Sleep, Black Birds, and Monkey Meatmen. Add all their members up and there'd still probably be fewer people than there are in the Polyphonic Spree.
MONDAY: Sure, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony only had one gimmick--doo-wop meets hip-hop--but it was a helluva gimmick. The Bone brothers bum-stiggedy-bum tonight at Washington's 9:30 Club with Mike Beck, Rob Cash, and Once. We, too, miss our Uncle Charles, y'all.
TUESDAY: Though we liked the band better when it was playing charmingly inept hardcore, emo experimentalist Joan of Arc comes to the Black Cat with Owen and Our Brother the Native.
WEDNESDAY: We are terribly sad to inform you that tonight marks the final Death Set show for the forseeable future before pesky visa issues force the band to take a hiatus of uncertain length. Bid the Set farewell, though hopefully not for long, upstairs at the Ottobar. Retisonic, featuring ex-members of Swiz and Bluetip, continues to pound out sharp, smart post-hardcore in the best D.C. tradition at the Talking Head with Riddle of Steel. Reformed, because what band isn't these days, classic Aussie punk band Radio Birdman brings its Stooges worship to the Black Cat with the throat-shredding blues-punk of Easy Action.
IN THE WINGS: Great gravelly noise fills up the Talking Head when Brooklyn's Mouthus drones way past your bedtime at the Talking Head Oct. 12 with special guests. (For more info call  962-5588 or visit www.talkingheadclub.com.) Venerable indie hip-hop label Stones Throw throws a package tour together that swings through Sonar Nov. 5 featuring producer/rapper extraordinaire Madlib, turntable wizard J. Rocc, long lost rap legend that you've probably forgotten all about Percee P., and label main man Peanut Butter Wolf. (For more info call  327-8333 or visit www.sonar.us.) German sax legend Peter Brotzmann blows hard for his hero Albert Ayler at An die Musik Oct. 7 with Dutch percussion maestro Han BennikG (For more info call  385-2638 or visit www.andiemusiklive.com.) H
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