WEDNESDAY: Likeably cheesy Victorian metal outfit Blackguard plays Sonar with Swashbuckle, Nightfire, and Internal Fear. Local leftfield jazz powerhouse Quartet Offensive fires the coals at Joe Squared.
THURSDAY: The semi-local boys-done-good of Yeasayer pack 'em into the Ottobar. Old-school Maryland death-metal brute Dying Fetus grinds and snarls at Sonar with Arsis, Misery Index, Annotations of an Autopsy, Conducting From the Grave, and Nightfire. Ratt finds out who still cares at Rams Head Live with Ghosts of War and Calisus. Pennsylvania postpunkers the Shackletons return to the Sidebar with Baltimore punk-rawk standards Thee Lexington Arrows and the Matrimonials; the Demon Beat opens. Knoxville pop-rock songwriter Dave Barnes performs at the 8X10 with Steve Moakler. Pansori, a local band making lead-heavy, sprawling orchestral screamo, tears into Charm City Art Space with Pala, Mouthbreather, the Max Levine Ensemble, and Bad Biology. Folk outfits Big Kitty and MacGregor Burns bring a little Appalachia to the Windup Space.
FRIDAY: As Tall as Lions brings its alt-pop easy listening to Sonar with Bear Hands and We Read Minds. The Felice Brothers, the NYC buskers turned folk powerhouse, will probably still take your change at the Ottobar with Cassettes and Apathy Eulogy. Vincent Black Shadow, Baltimore's psychedelic punk force-of-nature, brings Baltamont to the Golden West with White Hills and Kill Your Brain. KREation, aka the Kevin Robinson Ensemble, mashes jazz improv and composition at An die Musik. The oddball rock trippers of the Agrarians get civilized at Joe Squared with A Cat Named Cricket and the Betty Rats. DJs Mark Brown and Adam Gonzo run the dance floor at the Windup Space for their Served monthly.
SATURDAY: Philly's weirdo metal insurgent Stinking Lizaveta takes on the Golden West with 4th Horseman. The Death Set brings its ADD-punk sugar rush back to Sonar with All Leather, Yip Yip, and DJ Cullen Stalin. Spineless Swine and Skydivers pay yet more tribute to the Moz downstairs at the Ottobar; upstairs, Baltimore Americana outfit Whale Show celebrates a CD release. The much in-demand jazz pianist George Colligan brings his trio to An die Musik for two evening shows. Female-fronted metal festival Flight of the Valkyries holds some kind of audition/contest at the Sidebar with [geist], Acid Queen, Scarz Within, and Cypher Lock all vying for a spot. Barbez, an everything-and-the-kitchen-sink folk-ish ensemble from NYC, performs at the Windup Space with Dave Heumann's solo project Dragoon and pedal-steel alchemist Susan Alcorn. Former Red Roomer and improv sax player Matana Roberts presents COIN COIN, a sort of hybrid of storytelling and large-group improvisation, supported by a local who-who's of Baltimore's out-music scene at the Red Room at Normal's Books and Records. The Steez crew returns with another edition of its evil circus-themed seasonal "Massive" events--this time at Bourbon Street--sporting a long lineup of D&B/EBM/house usual suspects, including Donald Glaude, Datsik, SBS, and more (full lineup at steezpromo.com).
SUNDAY: Fred Hammond, Shirley Caesar, and Ricky Dillard sing the gospel at 1st Mariner Arena. Big room post-indie pop outfit OK Go gets cute at Rams Head Live with Earl Greyhound and Robert Francis.
MONDAY: Scottie B and Cullen Stalin's dance weekly No Rule returns to the Metro Gallery. Ace singer/songwriter Josh Ritter plays Rams Head Live.
TUESDAY: Newish dance party omnivore Kowli Nights returns to the Ottobar. For better or worse, John Lydon's post-Sex Pistols outfit Public Image Ltd. makes another go of it at Rams Head Live. DJ Napspace and Landis Expandis bring the funk to Joe Squared for their Dig! weekly. Surroundings make hardcore awesome at Charm City Art Space with Caulfield, Triac, and Ten Ton. The Out of Your Head series collective puts together Rhodes player Chris Pumphrey, trumpet player Danny Gouker, and drummer Nathan Ellman-Bell at the Windup Space for improv fun.
WEDNESDAY: The Buzzcocks--as in, the well-aged punk legends--return to the stage at the Ottobar to perform their first two records; the Dollyrots open. Goth-rock unit Dommin dries its eyes at Sonar. The Mobtown Modern series closes out its season at the Metro Gallery with "Rite of Swing," e.g. a jazz take on Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. Alt-rock dude Charlie Mars plays Rams Head Live with Julian Velard and Ellen Cherry.
IN THE WINGS: The Maryland Death Fest returns to Sonar May 28-30 with more bands than can be mentioned here, but it is, yes, all very brutal. (For more information visit sonarbaltimore.com or call  783-7888.) Psych-pop rhythm dup High Places come to the Ottobar May 23. (For more information visit theottobar.com or call  662-0069.) Dance-pop bore Passion Pit comes to Rams Head Live June 2 with Tokyo Police Club. (For more information visit ramsheadlive.com or call  244-1131.)
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Baltimore, MD 21201