(Tractor) Since I have not heard nor seen This Is Not My Beautiful Band, I can’t necessarily speak to their abilities to cover Talking Heads songs, BUT I will take any opportunity to talk about how great Talking Heads are, duh. More Songs About Buildings and Food is one of my favorite albums ever! Tina Weymouth is such a boss bassist! David Byrne’s insane dancing in Stop Making Sense is my spirit animal! The Facebook event info for this indicates that this tribute band and I are on the same fan-club page: “This is a project of passion. A loud, public, thank you to one the greatest bands of our lives... TALKING HEADS!” So if you only have any tentative decisions for this holiday, this will probably be the good thing to do. See what I did there. EMILY NOKES
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(Crocodile) San Francisco–based indie rockers Geographer have the tools in their tool kit; I'm just not convinced they know how to deploy them. Prettily brittle synth arpeggios mingle with guitar chugs and the occasional burst of cello, while frontman Michael Deni breathes needy nothings (why so serious?) and the world continues to spin. It's well-composed music with technical precision, but it unfortunately lacks hooks. After delving into their discography, I'd be hard-pressed to remember a single clever turn of phrase or catchy melody. Which isn't to say it's not serviceable electro-pop; there's just nothing overtly noteworthy about it. Besides that cello: more of that, please. Beyond that, these "geographers" need to pinpoint their focus. KYLE FLECK
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(Black Lodge) Get unpatriotic with an early evening of agitated, sweltering hardcore. Toronto's blistering guitar onslaught S.H.I.T. (aka Sexual Humans in Turmoil) may pierce your inner ears with their cochlea-crunching grind. On their Collective Unconsciousness 7-inch (Iron Lung), abrasive and fiercely welded guitar fury reigns, each song faster and meaner than the next; I've lauded inventive Seattle-based punk label Iron Lung Records in these pages before for their ability to curate the best in punk from the Northwest and beyond. As a label that "know[s] what it likes and what it doesn't like," they’ve established themselves as likers/distributors of heavy music worth hearing. Also certainly worth hearing are Vexx's spiraling, Midwestern-thunderstorm-heavy guitar whorls—the Olympia-based punks are a powerful lady-led force of technically composed hardcore post-punk. Their un-repressed riffs and empowered political undertones make the re-release of their self-titled 12-inch on M’Lady’s Records something to seek. Also obliterating this incinerating shredfest are Mercenaries, featuring members of Olympia death-metal act Bone Sickness. BRITTNIE FULLER
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And here's all our recommended music events—tonight, tomorrow, and beyond!