WEDNESDAY: DJ Dyrti hosts the first of two hip-hop showcases this week at Sonar with Broadway, the League, J Optimo, and I. Brown all spitting some rhymes. Boston's Street Dogs, a "supergroup" of sorts drawn from the Dropkick Murphys and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, raise a few glasses at the Ottobar with Dark Buster, Everybody Out, and the Reticents. The Lemonheads--yes of 1995 alternapop fame--now older and considerably less hot, chase a paycheck at Washington's Black Cat with Raccoon, and the New Rivals.
THURSDAY: The Inner Harbor goes thump tonight with "bass queen" Baby Anne on the decks at Mosaic with beat accomplices Jen Lasher and Darling Nikki. For whole different kind of trip, Dorsal Fink heads into space-rock orbit at the Talking Head with Science Fiction Idols, Motorocket, and the Ripouts.
FRIDAY: The ladies show 'em how it's done tonight with the release of Even a Man Can Do This, a local all-female hip-hop DVD, with DJ Spontaneous spinning the beats at the (New) Turntable Club. DJ Dyrti hosts the second of Sonar's hip-hop showcases, this time with rhymes courtesy of Operation Takeover, Peter Parker, A Class, Jimmy the Mole, and Oz. Monarch is not exactly frightening, more blissful and lovely, but it's the highlight of tonight's "Frightmare Before Christmas" at the Sidebar with Survivors of Camp Crystal Lake and Ashes of Kings. Girlfriend in a Coma, fresh off a tour with Morrissey and returning to Baltimore for, like, the third time in as many months, plays its old favorites (at least they should be by now) at Rams Head Live with the Nikki Barr Band. Unsilent Night winds up at Joe Squared with a very literally named Hybrid Groove Project--that'd be sax and turntables--and DJ Dubble8.
SATURDAY: Things go ape-shit crazy tonight with a room full of drum `n' bass heads soaking the floor at Sonar to the mixing skills of DB and Dara, Godfather Sage, NSI and Maboroshi, Proxxy and Lantern, Famous Amos, Jacob Gud-E, and Nefarious Dub. Garage-punk dirt warrior Hollywood celebrates its new album at the Talking Head with Deep Sleep, Vincent Black Shadow, and Blondsai. Baltimore Brit rocker the Payola Reserve aims for the stars at the Ottobar with the Squaaks, the Motorettes, and John Hardy Boys. Sri Aurobindo rocks for freedom with Absolver and DJ Jason Willet at the Lo-Fi Social Club. Cellist Janel Leppin gets together with guitarist Anthony Pirog for who knows what--and that's the beauty of it--at the Red Room at Normals Books and Records.
SUNDAY: Infraction, Winnipeg's finest in hardcore, enjoys balmy Baltimore and rattles the Ottobar with Soul Affect, Liquid Lucky, and Corey Latsha and the Double Threat. Meanwhile, Pyramids get into some indie oddballery over at the Lo-Fi Social Club with Werewolves, ROTA, and Army of Kashyyyk.
MONDAY: Late Night Shoppers stop off at the 8x10. Or, you could just go shopping yourself because that's about it for tonight. All apologies.
TUESDAY: Fun fact: Google Nick and the Nine and you get a YouTube of some dude named Nick playing a Nine Inch Nails cover (not much else). It's sort of funny. Nick and the Nine, the band--whatever it may be--plays at the 8X10.
IN THE WINGS: DJ Shadow, godfather of so many things in the world of beat, comes to Sonar Jan. 23 with Cut Chemist. (For more information call  327-8333 or visit www.sonarbaltimore.com.)
812 Park Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201