I only got yelled at by one girl for my slutty costume tirade in last week’s column. Kickass!
Tonight, there’s a twist party at the Highdive. I’m being completely serious. You can actually go to the Highdive and do the twist and not get funny looks. The show/dance party starts at 9 p.m. and the lineup is (here we go): Los Straitjackets, the World Famous Pontani Sisters, Kaiser George (no relation to the Kaiser Chiefs) and the Patrick Sweany Band. Adept twisters have already purchased their tickets in advance for $12, but you can still get in for $15 at the door.
Elsewhere in Chambana tonight you can find Megan Johns and Jenny Keefe playing an early show at Aroma CafÇ. The show starts at 8 p.m., and is free (though tips are appreciated). Megan has surged onto the scene in the last couple of years, releasing a solo album (recorded with Andy Lund of Temple of Low Men) and starting a band called the Greytones. She is the daughter of Kristen Johns, who was a songwriter and musician who helped organize, with Mark Rubel, the Champaign Underground CDs in the ’90s (which grade-schooler Megan was a part of). Jenny Keefe is also making a new name for herself in CU, playing out more and appearing on elsinore’s latest CD singing backup vocals.
Elsewhere and later on Thursday, Quadremedy headlines a Students for a Sensible Drug Policy show at Cowboy Monkey, while Zorba’s stays open late for its Thursday night jazz showcase this week, with Briggs Houchin Trio. Check the shows list for more info.
Friday night brings an interesting show to an interesting space here in CU -OPENSOURCE Art will host Negativland. OPENSOURCE Art, located at 12 E. Washington in Champaign, is an alternative art space, and Friday night they’re hosting a very alternative performance. Negativland is a group of artists in the truest sense of the word, as they specialize in nothing specific and everything all at once. On this tour, they will be stripping down the theatrics of puppets and pieces and focusing on a live radio show with a studio audience. If that doesn’t quite sound right, it’s because it’s not easy to explain. Just head to negativland.com and read up on the group and their many legal battles. It might be enough to get you to drop fifteen bucks to see something truly different and interesting. Showtime is 7 p.m., and there is limited seating, so get there early.
Across town at 10 p.m., Brother Embassy returns to the stage after a short break from performing. Frontman Nate Jones, best known for his stint as a Madrigal singer in high school and his affection for llamas, is a treat to watch as he performs. The word exuberance is probably the best choice when trying to describe his stage presence. The band specializes in frock (or is it runk? I don’t know – something that combines funk and rock) with quirky lyrics. You might hear about laying down some funky, a showdown at the Circle K, or even a song about the ethnic makeup of the band. Also playing is Vannatica, a band that I could find no info whatsoever about. The cover is $5.
Over at the Courtyard CafÇ you won’t be able to drink while watching Lynn O’Brien, Treologic and the Dakota. Seriously, this is the issue that keeps most people out of that place. With the smoking ban coming, not being able to smoke inside at the Courtyard isn’t that big of a deal – there’s an outdoor area in close proximity -but people want to drink. That’s just how it is. There are plenty of other colleges that have or allow alcohol in their unions. Wisconsin has a bar at their union venue. Why can’t the people in charge of the Courtyard space (the same people who are always worried about getting more people in the room) finally realize that even just making it BYOB would really help the situation? This show starts at 9 p.m., and is $3 (or free with UIUC ID). Lynn O’Brien has turned a lot of ears her way in the last year by playing relentlessly and writing great songs with excellent melodies. Go see what all the fuss is about. Treologic will also make a second appearance this weekend, playing two sets at Cowboy Monkey on Saturday night.
Sunday night brings one of my absolute favorite bands back to town. The Wandering Sons will play at Cowboy Monkey as part of a birthday bash for Josh “Tambourine Testicle” Lucas, who drums for the Tractor Kings. elsinore will also play the show, as will other special guests. The Elanors might make an appearance, as Adriel Harris is now also a member of the Wandering Sons. Cameron McGill may also play a solo set, if transportation can be arranged. Regardless, it’s bound to be a great night of music. Showtime is 9 p.m., and the cover is $5. The Wandering Sons, fronted by Cory Chisel (who has one of the most amazing voices on record), will finally release
a new full-length in December. Sunday night will be a chance to catch some of those new songs, along with old crowd favorites. This is a show I’m proud to have booked, and I can’t wait for it.
Tuesday night, the Canopy Club features an early show with the French Kicks and Watery Domestic, and the latter kicks off a new month of rehearsal space with Krukid and Triple Whip. It seems that there will be much collaboration between the acts, which will be excellent, as Krukid is one of the most refreshing voices in hip-hop lately, and one of the best to call CU home. Add that to Triple Whip’s bass/drums punch and there will likely be some great moments. Triple Whip is also about to release their new CD -the release show is at the Iron Post on Nov. 11, with Water Between Continents, Lucky Mulholland and New Ruins.
In other upcoming show news, Tritone will make its first appearance ever, at Cowboy Monkey on Nov. 16. The band is fronted by Adam Wolfe (Sick Day, the Jammies) on lead vocals/guitar, and also features Joe “I’m Growing A Rockin’ Beard” Funderburk (Mad Mardigan) on the drums, and David Ward (Third Stone, the Brat Pack) on bass. The night is sure to be overflowing with rock (I mean rawk), as it also features Lifers, a new project from Guido Esteves (Sick Day, the Brat Pack).
Mike Ingram lives in Champaign, where he spends his days booking shows and learning ridiculous cover songs. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.