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The Short List

The Walkmen

By Michael Byrne | Posted 1/23/2008

WEDNESDAY: It's a slow start to your music week. The 8X10 unveils its Artist of the Month, and it's none other than Scranton, Pa.'s Morning Pride, which lists the Dave Matthews Band as its primary influence. Kudos. (Lucid and the Dirk Quinn Band open the night.) Albatross sweats and grinds for your power harness at the Ottobar with the Expanding Man, Hot Magic, and Vox Populi.

THURSDAY: Soul Coughing dude-cum-poet/songwriter Mike Doughty returns to full-band form--that still doesn't sound like Soul Coughing--at the 8X10. I forget: Are we still in the phase where we're supposed to quietly respect Marilyn Manson and just be glad that some kids are digging on "The Beautiful People" instead of whatever modern rock radio is shilling for this week? Or are we back in "this guy's a tool" mode? A little of both, probably. The spectacle happens at Rams Head Live. Speaking of modes, the Walkmen reveal at the Ottobar whether they're still in their music-for-your-folks phase or if they've decided to rock again. And, again, from what we're hearing--thanks, Butter Team--about the new album, a little of both; White Rabbits and the Subjects open.

FRIDAY: New York jazz pianist Benito Gonzalez--playing with his quartet tonight--brings the best groove you'll hear all week to the New Haven Lounge. Philly's Coyote makes the Talking Head all kinds of fuzzy, loud, and pretty with Mtn High, the Moon and Badtimes, and Eyeball Skeleton. The Sidebar gets a little twangy with local rockabilly outfit the Garnet Hearts headlining with Cowboy Amnesia and DJ Action Pat, whose got one hell of a rock 'n' soul-stocked crate. At Sonar, an absolutely absurd amount of bands play the Verus Festival, a sorta metal-bent thing that happens in many cities: In Dying Arms, Downfall, Wits-End, I'd Rather Be, Silence the Myth, Rites of Ash, Nine Tail, Whisteria Cottage, Dead on Impact, Gorman Prophecy, Enstride, Twelve After, Passion at Gunpoint. Pack a lunch. Charm City Space scores big with a fantastic lineup of the Vonneguts, Pwrfl Power, Moscow Telephone, and South Carey. Over at Short List headquarters, we've been digging Pwrfl Power's upcoming debut heavily; it goes after our Little Wings/Thanksgiving/Phil Elverum raggedy folk cortex hard. Come March, look for a more intensive discussion on said disc. And since you can't buy it yet, you oughta be here tonight. Trust us.

SATURDAY: Baltimore really needs some more techno in its diet, so maybe you should head down to the Depot for Baltimore Electronic's "More or Less" party for some electro, mnml, and whatever else they decide to throw at the dance floor. At Rams Head Live, Doreen Vail, who did (part of) Season 4's version of "Way Down in the Hole" for The Wire, celebrates the release of her new album, Odyssey. Relatively legit country dude George Strait plays a probably sold-out 1st Mariner Arena with Little Big Town. By some sort of cosmic injustice, Jimmie's Chicken Shack--quite possibly the band that defined the moment when MTV got really, really shitty--is releasing a new album at Towson's Recher Theatre with Burn the Fields, Loving the Lie, and the Carbon Kin. Sorta hardcore, sorta rap band Yah Mos Def plays with Cult Classics, Wild and Crazy Kids, Mindset, Submarine Screendoor, Skanarchists, and Dr. Nick at Charm City Space.

SUNDAY: The Failure's Union, a fine homage to '90s indie rock from Buffalo, N.Y., rounds out an otherwise punk bill of Jersey's Dead Tired and Dead Mechanical at Charm City Space. Lupe Fiasco brings his brand of parentally approved hip-hop to Sonar with Grandmaster Roc Raida and James Nasty. Stella Wake Up, an Annapolis pop-punk/rock band so vanilla it sort of makes us lose faith in music, headlines a night at the Ottobar with At Sundown, Autumn Awakening, Sky vs. Sea, the Kindness of Strangers, and the local garage cave men of Vincent Black Shadow. A quick rant: So, we're pretty happy we got the Fiery Furnaces playing Baltimore--we're getting shafted a lot lately by bands hopping from Washington to Philly--but, wouldn't you know it, Washington's 9:30 Club gets the Fiery Furnaces and Super Furry Animals and our favorite techno nontechno Kraut-bump band Holy Fuck. Your normally sedate Short List scribe is feeling a little edgy right now.

MONDAY: Unless you're looking for loud, you're kinda screwed tonight; about the only thing live happening is the Ottobar's "Metal as Fuck Monday Night," which warps your fragile mind with Shat, Nocnista, Condemn the Infected, and Chapter of Decay. For something on the quieter side, Joe Squared hosts sax man Stan Killian's jazz quartet.

TUESDAY: At the Sidebar, Denver's Grace Gale screams away your eardrums with openers Victim Effect, Play Pause Repeat, and Love and Strife.

IN THE WINGS: Daniel Johnston returns to town Feb. 24, again playing with Jason Dove and the Magic Whip, at the Ottobar. (For more information call [410] 662-0069 or visit

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