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By Michael Byrne | Posted 8/4/2010

WEDNESDAY: Alterna-rock contender Son of a Bad Man shoots first at the Ottobar. The jazz free-thinkers of Quartet Offensive perform at Joe Squared.

THURSDAY: A big cast of local hip-hop packs into the Ottobar, including Shy Lady Heroin, Wood, Infamous Goon, DGK, Apex the Genius, Tu-Khindz, Gwop Getta$ Ent., and Ty Gudda. Soft and lovely local folk unit Small Sur plays the Metro Gallery with Strand of Oaks and the Dodgers. The Red Room at Normal's Books and Records kicks off a new series of "surround sound" performances in its newly redone digs. Baltimore's Dixieland band Sac Au Lait returns to Joe Squared. Alt-radio band Keane plays Columbia's Merriweather Post Pavilion with Ingrid Michaelson and Fran Healy. Chicago noise-rock terror Cacaw skins alive the Windup Space with Witch Hat, Landlords, and Pfisters.

FRIDAY: The Aussie alt-rockers of Sick Puppies please 98 Rock fans at Sonar with It's Alive, My Darkest Days, and Skitzo Calypso. The Ottobar goes into rager mode once again with the Moustache party upstairs and music from Nuh Uh and the Moustache Crew; downstairs DJs Craig Boarman and Who spin Brit-pop and the usual party pleasers. Japanese sound artist Kouhei Matsunaga makes sonic warfare at the Hexagon with Full on Void. Rhonda Robinson, the Maryland soul-jazz vocalist, brings her quartet to An die Musik. Staggering Back, four Bel Air dudes making pickup truck power-rock, celebrate an album release at the 8X10 with Circle of Fire, Out of the Cold, and Samantha Bloom. Thrash band Common Enemy goes to war at the Sidebar with the Revelevens, Trans Fatty Acids, and the Snallygasters. The indie-heavy one-two punch of Arcade Fire and Spoon takes on Merriweather Post Pavilion. Great, great heavy lineup at the Charm City Art Space: local hardcore-plus outfit Pulling Teeth, California hardcore band Ceremony, Washington, D.C. grindcore forward-thinker Magrudergrind, insane Baltimore supergroup Hatewaves, grind old-schooler Triac, the Love Below, and Judas. Occasional heavy-bass celebration Dub Nation returns to Bourbon Street with guests Reid Speed and Original Sin.

SATURDAY: Noise-core OG Unsane takes on the Ottobar with Keelhaul, Surroundings, and Wrath of Typhon. The Rainbow Bridge Fest floods the Hexagon with noise and a wide swath of other good weird shit, including Skin Graft, Sensible Nectar, GayBomb, Liveshitbingepurge, AM Salad, Spermwhales, Black Bloc, RJ Myato, and Abiku. Hollywood Nights, "The World's Greatest Bob Seger Tribute," plays Rams Head Live. DJ Frank brings his Voodoo Funk Party to the Windup Space. The Rocketz make "power-billy" heat at the Sidebar with Garnet Hearts, Hot Rod Hillbillies, and Recently Deceased. The Summer Spirit Festival takes over Merriweather Post Pavilion with Erykah Badu, Janelle MonA¡e, the Roots, Common, Chuck Brown, and B.o.B.

SUNDAY: Fox in the Henhouse makes music as original as its name at the Ottobar with Swimming With Dolphins--which is, OMG, the dude from Owl City--Rookie of the Year, and For the Foxes. The Barenaked Ladies are still a band and you can see for yourself tonight at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Another "Scream the Prayer" Christian emocore worship night presents the sort of music you hear in heck at Sonar (lineup at

MONDAY: The steaming pile of jock-rock of New Politics is nothing at all resembling "new" at the Ottobar with the Funeral Party. Giuda, an Italian punk-metal band for fans of Tragedy and assorted crust, levels the Barclay House with Boneblack, Infernal Stronghold, and Revolta. Colbie Caillat, the latest big name entry to the dorm room easy-listening genre, rots some teeth at Rams Head Live with Justin Young.

TUESDAY: Mewithoutyou--a bit Bright Eyes, a bit Mountain Goats, and a bit ramshackle gypsy-folk--plays the Ottobar with Murder by Death and Philly's lovely Buried Beds. Latter-day indie folkie Phosphorescent shows his soft side at Sonar with Fleet Fox J. Tillman. Beres Hammond heads up the "For the Love of It Tour" at Rams Head Live with Inner Circle, Culture, and Lenya Wilkes. But of course: Landis Expandis and DJ Napspace make funky good times at Joe Squared for their Dig weekly. The Out of Your Head collective brings in another cast of improv players to its weekly Windup Space performance.

WEDNESDAY: The Chameleons Vox, some remnant of the Chameleons UK, go for another lap at the Ottobar with Skydivers and the Drowning Season.

IN THE WINGS: Current psych object-of-affection Moon Duo comes to the Golden West Sept. 15 with Sri Aurobindo and Sweaty Aura. (For more information visit or call [410] 889-8891.) Nas and Damian Marley come to Sonar Aug. 31. (For more information visit or call [410] 783-7888.) Hot Hot Heat, big indie-rock band turned mainstream turned indie again, comes to the Ottobar Sept. 4 with Hey Rosetta and 22-20s. (For more information visit or call [410] 662-0069.)

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In a Lonely Place (8/4/2010)
Montreal's Arcade Fire shows its American roots on new album

Soft Core (7/28/2010)
A defense of a different live music experience

The Short List (7/28/2010)

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