Sad to say, but summer is almost officially dead. Sure, school doesn't start for a few more weeks, but September is here, and that means it's time to get back to living like responsible young people. But before everything gets chaotic and the cold weather turns you into a homework hermit, why not take advantage of one more weekend full of great shows?
Everybody's talking about controversial Toronto punks Fucked Up playing the Vera Project this Friday, September 5. And while the headliner's hype is deserved (they are some pretty tough fucking dudes), the opening bands alone are easily worth the price at the door.
Like a lot of groups coming out of Austin, Texas—YellowFever, Best Fwends, and Gene Defcon, to name a few—the Strange Boys embody a kind of wholesome lightheartedness. They wear their musical tastes right on their sleeves—with weirdo vocals reminiscent of Half Japanese mixed with hints of blues, the band sound a bit like Daniel Johnston with the Ventures as his backing band and Muddy Waters raised from the dead to zombie out on rhythm guitar.
Also on that bill, Long Beach's Crystal Antlers have developed a deserved reputation for destroying crowds with their punishing live show. Their epic buildups, warbling organ breakdowns, singer Jonny Bell's throaty vocals snapping from beauty to beastly, and percussionist Sexual Chocolate's wacky stage antics all make for a debut EP as impressive as their live show.
On Saturday night, U.S. Girls ride into Beacon Hill's Monsterssori House from Chicago on the rising wave of punk bands playing hazy pop music in the vein of Black Tambourine or the Cocteau Twins. Soloist Megan Remy's vocals echo into transparency but stay catchy on songs that sound like Ida No from Glass Candy being sucked into a black hole. Weird bleeps and stomping drums combine with a druggy yet angelic voice, making for songs that are both comforting and stressful. In the warm, damp setting of Monsterssori's bike workshop, it should sound like pop music overheard by a baby still in the womb.
Summer may have flown by, but hopefully there will be more weekends like this to look forward to when things really start getting ugly.