Despite it being only January, Spring Semester is already packed with some incredible shows. It will be hard to top last semester’s performances by Danny Brown and Kitty Pryde, Mac DeMarco, and R Stevie Moore--just to name a few--but it’s looking like it might just happen. Hit the jump to see our preview for shows going into late February, and get excited now--because you’ll be able to see some great acts just a few hours after your first classes.
1/24 Christopher Owens and Mara Connor at Memorial Chapel ($5)
The first show of the semester will feature Christopher Owens, formerly of the band (not the show, sorry y’all) Girls. Owens essentially left Girls to make more music kind of similar to Girls, so if you liked Girls, you'll like this. Anyway. This golden-maned sex god will be playing with a nine-piece band to ensure a comfortably dramatic evening in the Memorial Chapel. One time (read: one semester) Wesleyan student, Mara Connor, will be opening.
1/24 Iceage, Let's Party Hats! Hats! Hats!, Bakshi, and Slasher Roth in Eclectic (free)
After the Christopher Owens show, prepare to cleanse yourself of all the teenage angst accumulated from the first day of class with a free Iceage show. Hailing from Denmark, this four-piece punk band of youngins will be gracing us with their adorably intense presence (they're all around our age, so try to hook up with all of them at once). Hopefully we'll see some blood and/or minor injuries. I saw them live over the summer and people were throwing firecrackers and kickin some good ole American ass (no firecrackers in the cafe, though, or I’ll kick your ass). The band's second album drops on Matador in February, so we very well may see some new material. Listen to their new single here.
1/26 Dead Prez and Umi at Psi U ($5)
Critically-acclaimed rap duo Dead Prez will be playing at Psi U as part of a panel discussion and concert, Exposing Academia: Exclusion and its Consequence. The show will also feature Umi, a Wesleyan grad. This is a good show for lovers of hip hop, social justice, or (as is often the case) both. I know there’s quite a few of you lurking around our little campus so be sure not to be miss this! We never have events quite like this one. It's bigger than hip HOP hip HOP hip HOP...
1/26 Widowspeak and Treasure Island at Eclectic (free)
With their second album Almanac dropping the week of the show, Widowspeak will play some brand new material along with some of their already established dream pop tunes. Lead singer Molly Hamilton admits that she still suffers from stage fright, so please ease her phobias and welcome the band warmly.
2/2 Sinkane at TBD (free)
Sinkane, the project of Sudanese emigre Ahmed Gallab, released an impossibly funky record on DFA last year, conjuring sounds equally influenced by African pop, 70s glam, and political rebellion. But on Mars, the former Yeasayer, Caribou, Born Ruffians, and Of Montreal collaborator makes one thing clear: first and foremost, Sinkane makes dance music.
If, however, you’re into a more aggressive form of dancing than Sinkane offers, come to WestCo to see the grind, crust, and doom offered by a handful of Connecticut bands. I’m fairly out of my element on this one, so check out hardcore booker extraordinaire Jason Kilbourne’s concise and expectedly brutal descriptions of the bands on the show’s facebook page.
Do you like weed and waffles? Of course you do. Brooklyn rap crew Flatbush Zombies certainly do, along with all things undead, so you best be at this one. They’ve expressed disdain for being compared to weirdo rappers like ODB and Danny Brown; in the words of member Meechy Darko, “zombies is what it is.” Chicago producer and rapper Kechphrase is opening.
2/9 George Lewis at Russell House (free)
Trombonist, composer, computer music pioneer, musicologist, scholar, MacArthur fellow... Avant garde experimentalist George Lewis seems to have done it all, from collaborations with Anthony Braxton and Count Basie to music director at the Greenwich Village No Wave performance space The Kitchen. Based solely on his dizzying resume, he’s sure to give a fascinating, if not enlightening, performance.
2/14 Slowdance at TBD (free)
Bring your sweetie to this show because it’s on Valentines Day. Do you like catchy pop, funny characters like △▼◎◆▣◤◣▥, and songs called “Boyfriend” that aren’t by Best Coast? If so, you might just fall in love with this band. Coming by way of Brooklyn, Slowdance will hit you will all the shoegazy pop needed to secure that peck on the cheek or maybe even a slow dance(ha)! What a perfect band to come on V-Day, because they even have songs in a romance language (French).
2/16 Leaves of Green at Earth House (free)
Leaves of Green, from New York City are a self-described, “band with a penchant for falsetto.” The group plays a brand of light indie-rock that should settle well in Earth House’s laid back ambience. James Madole is the man making the music, contributing his vocals, guitar, ukulele, and keyboard to create an eerie loneliness reminiscent of Elliot Smith. Opening for the band two Wes acts: Blackbird and the Cherry Tree and O Presidente!
2/23 Jonathan Toubin’s Soul Clap at TBD (free)
45 RPM Rock and soul spinnin’ DJ Jonathan Toubin, famous for his New York Night Train Parties, is bringing his Soul Clap & Dance Off all the way to Brooklyn, CT. Wait up, THE WINNER OF THE DANCE OFF GETS $100 so get your ass here. Put your winnings in a secure bond and you could have a lot more money in 10 years. I can’t do this (anti) party justice, so I will have to pass you onto Toubin’s site to read more about it.
2/21 Delicate Steve at TBD (free)
Delicate Steve’s last album, Positive Forces is filled with transfixing slide guitar riffs and melodies that essentially function as the lead singer in the band. After listening to the record, these sounds subvert one’s capacity to hear anything other than the looped and warped guitar action of mastermind, Steve Marion. This show guarantees to fill the audience with Delicate Steve’s incredible carthic energy, so don’t miss it!