Sound Ground #52

The 14th Annual Great Cover Up is over, and here is a roll call for the portion last week, part one of two. Joseph Donhowe of Emotional Rec Club began as Frank Sinatra and received an ovation for his gin-soaked rendition of “My Way.” Sick Day stood out second with a prodigious Pearl Jam set that consisted of nonsingles: “Rearviewmirror,” “Porch,” “State of Love and Trust” and “Go.” Who knew all these years that Jeff Ament was impersonating Rory Grennan? Nadafinga saluted ’80s excess with a spunky sendup of Bon Jovi. G. Lee and Jet Blonde covered The Police but dressed as Joan Jett and The Blackhearts so as not to spoil the surprise; it worked! Lorenzo Goetz resurrected the mid-’90s stoner spirit of Cypress Hill, and headliner Temple of Low Men concluded with a percussion-perfect Rage Against the Machine set that triggered a rabid mosh pit; frontman Brandon T. Washington likened the experience to church. More recap next time.

Tonight at Cowboy Monkey, Lorenzo Goetz reunite with Temple of Low Men, as well as The Swell, to celebrate the release of their second full-length album, Jesus Elephant. As if to dispel any notion that this is a religious album, Lorenzo Goetz advertised this show with a mind-blowing “WEFT Sessions” appearance that climaxed with a cover of Beck’s “Sissyneck” involving, among other things, a leather belt. Scary, sexy stuff. Show time tonight is 10 p.m., and cover is $5.

Two downtown shows serve as appetizers for the Jesus Elephant release party. Also at Cowboy Monkey, Michael “Guido” Esteves of Sick Day hosts “A Benefit for Washington School.” Adam Wolfe and Mike Ingram play to raise money for new piano strings and tuning for these schoolchildren. Show time is 5 p.m., and the suggested donation is $3.

Across the street, Aroma Cafe is home to live music every Thursday (except Thanksgiving) at 8 p.m., and in the spotlight this week are Darrin Drda and David Tcheng. Arrive early, if last week’s jam-packed “Chicks with Picks” is any indication. Then, Sunday, back at Cowboy Monkey, Darrin Drda’s Theory of Everything presents a rare afternoon show at 2 p.m. This is a fund-raiser for AWARE and Independent Media Center and aims at catharsis for those glum from recent events. Darrin Drda’s Theory of Everything are at work on a second album, a peppery project on course to have at least 15 songs.

Saturday offers showgoers an attractive variety of options. At 8 p.m., “Corkscrew After Dark” presents Ryan Groff of Elsinore. This is a smoke-free, free-admission folk-rock show at Corkscrew Wine Emporium. At 10 p.m., “Afterglow” presents bossa nova and samba combo Desafinado at Krannert Center, also for free. At the same time downtown, Terminus Victor performs with 3 Piece Xtra Crispy and Broadzilla, billed as “Detroit’s all-female hard-rock-metal-punk trio.” This show is at Mike ‘n Molly’s and cover is $4.

The band i:scintilla often make headlines here, but the two acts that opened for i:scintilla at Mike ‘n Molly’s last Saturday are overdue for press of their own. Not unlike The Chemicals, Decals are a fine band to emerge midway through this year, yet remain under the radar. A youthful trio from Sullivan with a strong following, Decals played their first show May 15 and just cut a demo tape for promotional consideration. Think indie instrumental, although there are vocals. Also on the bill was Sounddrifter, a band from Chicago that mesmerized the entire room with original material, then closed with a request for “Nights in White Satin,” The Moody Blues’ 1968 single that took four years to become a smash hit. i:scintilla then ended the night by breaking things.

Todd J. Hunter hosts “WEFT Sessions” and “Champaign Local 901,” two hours of local music every Monday night at 10 p.m. on 90.1 FM. Send news to

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