NOT FOR THE JEFF BUCKLEY SET
Nuance, it seems, is a thing of the past. There's no mistaking the Teenagers of today with Frankie Lymon's puppy loving doo-woppers — these French-accented, Devo-y popsters have a damn-it-to-hell perspective of courtship and cuteness. And subtlety. In their melodic pop ballads, they gleefully mouth lyrics like, "She's a cheerleader, she's a virgin, and she's really tan ... On day two, I fucked her, and it was wild. She's such a slut." Aww. The trio — Quentin Delafon, Dorian Dumont and Michael Szpiner — formed in France in 2005, and released their first full-length album, Reality Check, earlier this year. The Teenagers will perform with Team Robespierre and Frankie Banks at 8 p.m. at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-833-9700; $10 in advance, $12 at the door — and, dig it, the show's all-ages.
LIFE AFTER BETTYE LAVETTE
After six years and a lot of road miles backing up soul survivor Bettye Lavette, Detroit bassist Patrick Prouty is reinventing himself as a home-rooted bassist-for-hire and leader of his own group. In the latter category he has an album called The Charmed Life (Leedle Music). The compositions are solid, but the group, the members' interplay and their playfulness are more important here. The too-little-heard Rob Pipho is on vibes; Phil Kelly is on piano, and drummer Billy Higgins kicks them into their grooves. The elegant Kelly plays the early dinner piano set 5-7 p.m., followed by full band sets later in the evening. At the Dirty Dog Jazz Café, 97 Kercheval Ave., Grosse Pointe Farms, 313-882-5299.
LIVING DEAD GIRLS
Waxen and wan, the heavy-lidded "sinister sirens" (dead-ish girls) in Sean Graham's digitally enhanced photographs cause titters and night terrors in equal measure. Take, for instance, the zombie gal, happily deodorizing her dewy pits with a can of Lysol — the Noir Leather employee and CCS alum melds the macabre with the darkly humorous. The exhibit's opening night will feature work from guest artist Mike Flesh, performances by They Never Sleep, Country Bob and the Bloodfarmers, and a fashion show from Cats in Bags productions. Doors at 8 p.m. for the art show, with a $5 cover after 10 p.m.; 21 and over. Graham's work will be on display through May 15, at Mephisto's, 2764 Florian St., Hamtramck; 313-875-3627.
THE READIES/THE MAGIC SHOP
A FEW CHORDS AND THE TRUTH
Danny Kroha has been called the nicest dude in all of Detroit music. That may be true, but what you should know is this one-time Gorie and Demolition Doll Rod is a Motor City-weaned gee-tar hero. And boy does that show in his new rock 'n' roll trio of pretty things. The band restores a certain faith in the homespun, early-Alice Cooper five-chord wallop; it's garage-era-cum-classic-rock that crashes and pops with weird and cool random twists. Thing is, you can sing along! The songs pack mighty choruses. And Kroha's roughshod croon's all gentle but with coarse command; filled with pitched shouts and swoony singsong. Also on the bill is the much-anticipated debut of the Magic Shop, captained by Steve Nawara (ex-Electric Six; Detroit Cobras), a combo we've not seen yet, but if local chatter's spot-on, it'll be sweet. At the Park Bar, 2040 Park Ave., Detroit; 313-962-2933.
STEVE TURRE QUINTET
JAZZ ON THE CONCH SHELL
Everyone's seen trombonist Steve Turre at his steady income gig in the Saturday Night Live house band for more than 20 years. But to really hear him is to encounter one of the most dynamic bone men around: Floating like a butterfly, stinging like a bee and punching like Muhammad Ali, he's got power, precision and the artistic imagination to balance the two. And in addition to his trombone, he's the master of the conch shell played as a true instrument rather than a mere novelty (not that there's no "wow-factor" to watching him wail on a conch). His band boasts one of the heaviest lineups we've seen in some time: newcomer Dion Parsons on drums plus George Cables (piano), Buster Williams (bass) and Billy Harper (saxophone). At the Jazz Café at Music Hall, 350 Madison Ave., Detroit; 313-887-8501. 10 p.m. and midnight; $15 advance, $20 door.
GALLIMAUFRY OF GIGS
Dubbed "a Detroit music festival for the sonically adventurous," this indoor-outdoor, twice-yearly music fest indeed has a fun, eclectic lineup. There's surf punk with 1964, grunge with Jehovah's Witness Protection Program, "creep pop" from Oscillating Fan Club, and ... oh hell, let's just list the rest of the bands. Beginning at 6 p.m., Curare III will also feature performances from Carjack, Pinkeye, Netherfriends, the Frustrations, Beekeepers, the Directions and Lenny Stoofy. At the CAID, 5141 Rosa Parks Blvd., Detroit; visit Myspace.com/CurareCAID or 313-899-CAID for info.
Let's agree to disagree. They say they sound like "A RoBot making Love To a Tree!!" And we'll just ignore the inane non sequitur (what is MySpace doing to our collective IQ?), join the masses and agree they sound a lot like Daft Punk. But it's infectiously fun electro-indie-dance music, with a retro feel that manages to fit in perfectly with today's anything-goes music scene. You could always check out their latest album, Robotique Majestique, but theirs is a sound that's best enjoyed at high decibels, bouncing along with the sweaty, corduroyed hipster to your left. 8 p.m. at St. Andrew's Hall, 431 E. Congress, Detroit; 313-961-8137 for info.
HALFWAY TO HALLOWEEN COSTUME BALL
WOULDN'T THAT BE APRIL 31 ...?
Grab your cloak and plastic dagger for this anachronistic masked ball — or even that moldering old gorilla costume in the back of your great uncle's closet, but please, kindly and for the love of god leave the fuzzy angel wings at home. There's enough of that shit during the actual Halloween season. Anyway, with cash prizes for the most awesomest of getups and performances from Haf/Life and DJ Brad from Necto, this promises to be quite a night, even if the cutesy and winged dare to show up. At the Crofoot Ballroom, 1 S. Saginaw, Pontiac; 248-858-9333 or myspace.com/halfwaytohalloween for information. Tickets are $5 if you are above 21 and add your name in advance to the guest list.
GLOBAL MARIJUANA MARCH
CALLING ALL POTHEADS
Think weed should be legal? So do lots of people. Hell, we do. Go march, or saunter casually while munching on a carton of Chinese takeout, or lie back in the grass with your iPod on high. What's the diff? But anyway, there will be speakers, info booths, a — shock — drum circle, a performance by James and the Rainbros and a demonstration that begins at — again, shock — 4:20 p.m. The event is at Grand Circus Park in Detroit; visit Detroitliberation.com for info.
TOKYO POLICE CLUB
JUST INDIE, WHATEVER THAT MEANS
In an era where music's glaringly divisive, and illustrated by oh-so-painfully-hyphenated subcategory (neo-prog-twee-post-rock-grunge-folk, anyone?), Tokyo Police Club manages to keep it together. They're just good, meritorious and noteworthy for that fact alone. No, really. Part Modest Mouse, part Strokes, the Ontario-based foursome formed in 2005 and almost immediately drew a following from the popaholics, the garage rawkers, even the ever-fickle emo kids and a few Midwestern tweakers. So, yes. You're allowed to like 'em, even though they're Canadian. At 8 p.m. with Smoosh Maps and Atlases at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-833-9700. Tickets $10, all ages.
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