WEDNESDAY: I went to a tiny-ass college full of extreme skiers and, yes, backpackers in a tiny-ass mountain town, and I think a good part of tonight's Rams Head Live lineup made it a tour stop at some point: Dilated Peoples, the Alchemist, Aceylone, and 88-Keys. Consider that more a nostalgic endorsement than a dis. Mark Kozelek, the force behind the Red House Painters' pretty-pretty atmosphere folk, makes it mellow like farm-country hillsides at the Ottobar with Red Sammy and Lisa Cerbone.
THURSDAY: We still don't understand DJs at the Ottobar-something about it being a steadfast rock club with weird sound for beats and bass-but DJ Q Bert isn't a bad way to get out of the June steam; the X-Ecutioners' Roc Raida opens. Modey Lemon turns snarly punk rock into lemonade at the Talking Head with Mannequin Men and the Battle Royale. The Sidebar hosts indie outfit Perdition along with Germ Attack! and Sacri-Fidelis. Indie nice guy Jason Dove guests on this edition of the (City Paper contributor) Ed Schrader Show at Metro Gallery. Meanwhile, in a show that we can describe only as pure screaming hell, Dark Lotus-a "supergroup" of Insane Clown Posse, Twizted, and, um, Blaze Ya Dead Homie-fucks up your kid's head worse than Disney ever could at Rams Head Live. This thing called Abba the Music 2008-The Official Abba Celebration Tribute happens at Washington's 9:30 Club.
FRIDAY: Rooney, a Brit-pop band out of California, plays Rams Head Live with Locksley and the Bridges-that's plural, not to be confused with the Baltimore jam demigod. Joe Squared gets funky with Oxter and some yet unidentified "Friends." Bow Legged Gorilla-please do explain that one-beatboxes at SCarey Studios with Teenage Souls, Aghost, and Psykids Army. Metal Blade Records shows off its fresh, well-honed wares to Sonar with a lineup of metal pain that includes the Absence, the Destro, Epicurean, Rose Funeral, As the Kingdom Falls, Fallen Martyr, Behold the Flood, and Faust-but not that Faust.
SATURDAY: Florida breaks master DJ Icey thaws on the decks at Bedrock with Gridlock. The Go brings Detroit garage-blues dirty-good-times to the Talking Head with the Black Hollies, the Flying Eyes, and Northernmost. Philly soul power unit Frankie Beverly and Maze let the velvet flow at Pier Six Pavilion with Stephanie Mills. The Hackensaw Boys drag their mini folk-punk army of buskers to the 8X10. Sonar is pretty gay tonight-hey, it says so on the flier-with its Candyland party featuring pretty gay dance music from DJ and DJ Nitro, Oohzee, Double-Up, Dallas, Neko, and Summer. The Saturday laboratory at the Red Room at Normals Books and Records takes its show tonight to Floristree for weird music/concept music chieftain Henry Flynt's third show in 20 years, performing tonight with his niece Libby as the Flynts. Oakland, Calif.'s Tippy Canoe brings its cutesy folk-pop to Metro Gallery with the Degenerettes, Secret Crush Society, and Uni and Her Ukulele.
SUNDAY: Goldfinger and Less Than Jake-totems of awful not-really-punk bands the world over and still bringing that big squirt gun onstage-play Rams Head Live with Westbound Train and Suburban Legends. The Ottobar hosts mega-hip Los Angeles record label Iheartcomix's remix tour with Franki Chan, Drop the Lime, and Radioclit bringing more bass than the building or the sound system can probably handle.
MONDAY: The Talking Head hosts the black-metal skullfuckery of North Carolina's Deadbird with Woolly Mammoth.
TUESDAY: Titillating boomer already-grandparents, Pat Benatar joins guitarist Neil Giraldo at Rams Head Live. Jimmie's Chicken Shack plays with the Kelly Bell Band, Can't Hang, Bonds and Bentley, and S.T.O.R.M. at Sonar to raise funds to help provide housing for homeless women in Baltimore-hey, it's a good cause. Sex Slaves bring raggedy punk-rock anthems to the Ottobar with Filthy Rotten Sex Machine, the Bleeding Hearts, and King Belvedere. Durham, N.C.'s Luego brings its classical-tinged pop-folk to Baltimore Chop.
WEDNESDAY: Athens, Ga., sends its finest in heavy, Harvey Milk, to the Ottobar with Dianogah, Storm of Light, and Baltimore's Dactyl. White-dude funk outfit Shook!!! plays the 8X10 with Higher by Nature, Pressing Strings, and Skribe.
IN THE WINGS: Still not at all "retiretard," as was feared, Jay Reatard comes to Sonar July 13 with Vincent Black Shadow and Ratsize. (For more information visit www.sonarbaltimore.com or call  783-7888.) Local punk/metal fixture Pulling Teeth comes to the Talking Head July 14 with Cold World, Iron Age, Trash Talk, and Alarmed. (For more information visit www.talkingheadclub.com or call  207-8011.)
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