After two weeks, the love letters are starting to pour in. On Slog, one reader wonders if I "realize that there are other neighborhoods outside of Capitol Hill where is [sic] music is played." Over on Line Out another fan writes: "This guy obviously loves himself more than the scene... [He] just cares about being cool."

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Okay, that's simply not true. I also care about getting free drinks. As for getting off the Hill, we'll get to that in a minute, but first an exciting (if Hill-related) announcement: Get your BAPE hoodies and crack/hustler metaphors ready, because Clipse will be playing Chop Suey on March 13, along with an as yet unannounced but "nationally known, really good DJ."

In slightly less trill news, Thursday, January 18, saw the unofficial first installment of Fourthcity's new weekly night at the Baltic Room with Hidden Habitats and FCS North. The crowd was quality if not quantity, with members of SunTzu Sound, Fourthcity, Murder City Devils/Triumph of Lethargy Skinned Alive to Death, and local superproducer Phil Ek all in attendance. FCS North were their usual flurry of up-front percussion, with Andy Sells sending cymbals flying from his kit and guest percussionist Jayson Powell tapping his congas like buttons on an arcade game.

On Friday, January 19, a solid crowd—including several ex-Catheters and one Steve Snere—turned out for the Black Lips show at the Crocodile (not on Capitol Hill!), despite the bands' assurances that there would be no theatrical pissing or projectile vomiting (there was minimal spitting). The band seemed thoroughly subdued onstage, dutifully playing their songs, hardly rocking out. The whole thing lacked energy, and even the audience's attempts to incite some rioting (throwing ice, spitting beer at the band) felt rather listless. Nobody's expecting bodily fluids at every show, but it'd be nice to know that the band members' hearts were still beating.

Up at the War Room's Hot Mess that same night, energy was abundant, thanks to a relentlessly fun 2x4 set by guest DJs Sean Majors and Marty Mar, who absolutely tore the place up. Expect to see some changes to Friday nights at the War Room in the very near future, but not the total loss of Hot Mess or sister night Cherry.

Saturday, January 20, found Fucking in the Streets venturing even further from the womblike Pike/Pine corridor into the industrial bowels of Georgetown for a warehouse party where the free drinks were dangerously plentiful. Old bikers mixed with young crusties, unleashed dogs and children wandered around freely, and a handful of bands—Princess Johnny and the Sex Changes, Skwish, Feral Children—played to a crowd that seemed stacked with siblings and parents. (Confidential to Princess Johnny and Skwish: Your band names are terrible.)

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Sunday, January 21, it was back to the Hill for burritos and happy-hour drinks (including Amy Sedaris's longneck-aritas) at the Cha Cha with bartender/DJ/drag impresario Marcus Wilson, who's currently working with cohort Jackie Hell on a script for a feature length Pho Bang movie set to begin filming this May.

egrandy@thestranger.com