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Every Time I Die
House Of Blues
The Buffalo, N.Y., fivesome's mildly mathy hardcore would be utterly East Coast were it not for their super-stewing it in groovy Southern rawk. So while they certainly go at it with bare-knuckle gusto, ETID's involved song structures shun hardcore's signature repetitiveness, and vocalist Keith Buckley boasts a wonderfully grainy, versatile instrument capable of so much more than just barking refrains. The crafted battering ram that is "The Marvelous Slut" might be the thinking man's New Millennium punk, yet the intricate riffery and high-plains howl of "Wanderlust" conjures heyday Corrosion of Conformity. If you're angry as fuck but still fancy a challenge, get in the pit. —Paul Rogers
JANET & RAY SCHERR FORUM THEATRE
"You bring out the blonde in me," Lucy Woodward gushed a few years ago on the fizzy teen-pop tune "Dumb Girls," but she's gotten wiser and grown up plenty since then. The British-born chanteuse is pictured on the cover of her jazzy new album, Hooked!, as a sultry glamazon in fishnets, glancing slyly backward from under a fall of Veronica Lake–style hair while kicking up her left heel and enigmatically clutching a room key at some noirish motel assignation. She's grown up musically as well, backed by literally dozens of swinging session musicians and produced by David Bowie visionary Tony Visconti, as she insinuates her way through an elastically soulful a cappella version of Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" and a deceptively breezy take on guest star Nellie McKay's "Another Woman." Most of the time, though, Woodward relies on her own songs, such as the wistful pop plea "Babies," where she gets right to the point: "Will someone knock me up now?" —Falling James
REAL ESTATE at the Echoplex; BORIS at El Rey Theatre; THE BANGLES at House of Blues (Anaheim); WEIRD AL YANKOVIC at Pantages Theatre; BLESSTHEFALL at Glass House (Pomona); DENISE DONATELLI at Vitello's.
This is not Honeyhoney's first rodeo. Singer/violinist Suzanne Santo and guitarist Ben Jaffe have dug into roots and country before — namely on their 2008 full-length debut, First Rodeo — but never as much as they do on their new album, Billy Jack. The local duo has a gift for jazz and pure-pop tangents, but this time around things are earthier, dustier and more stripped down. Normally, such a narrowing of focus would be merely retro and predictable, but it works for them here, with their new songs coming off especially heartfelt and direct, even under the gauze of time and genre. Santo's resolute vocals and banjo plucking on "Glad I've Done What I Did" and "Ohio" are more haunting than folksy. Even uptempo barn-burners like "Let's Get Wrecked" are infused with an undercurrent of regret and lovelorn desperation. —Falling James
CALVIN JOHNSON at the Smell; TOCHE AMORE at the Echoplex; ELLIOTT YAMIN at Hotel Café; ANNA MJOLL at Vibrato.
With songs like "Tear Bucket," "Trouble Ahead" and "Crocodile Tears," there's a lot of bluesy moaning and crying going on during Little Hurricane's debut album, Homewrecker. Anthony Catalano puffs up giant clouds of guitar and trades lonely lamentations with drummer Celeste Spina, who slashes and burns away the fog. On paper, at least, the Black Keys and White Stripes comparisons are generally valid. The San Diegans may be a minimalist duo playing big, noisy hard-blues riffs riven with elements of yearning power pop, but they ultimately reveal their own distinctly appealing blend of sunny jangle ("Get By") and morbid doom ("Lies"). However, the fairly standard lyrics don't yet match the grandeur of their music. —Falling James
KATISSE BUCKINGHAM QUINTET at Seven Grand; CHAIN GANG OF 1974 at Echo; VANPRASTA at Satellite; CATTLE DECAPITATION at Slide Bar (Fullerton).
EL REY THEATRE
Frank Ocean stands out from his peers. Unlike his psychotic hip-hop troupe Odd Future crewmate Tyler, The Creator (who has made a name for himself as a fire-starting, spastic youngster), the 23-year-old satin-voiced Ocean does his slaying via old-timey soul grooves and sexed-up, milky hooks. The Def Jam signee, who started off writing songs for Justin Bieber and John Legend, landed a surprise hit off his recent mixtape nostalgia, Ultra with the icy "Novacane." Subsequently, he scored studio time with the likes of Beyoncé, Ye and Hov. And other than the two throne-sitters, Ocean scores the most airtime on Watch the Throne, even grabbing first-voice-you-hear honors. Now gigging as a solo artist, Ocean enters uncharted waters. Time to see if dude can swim. —Dan Hyman
Mark Guiliana's Beat Music
Taking anyone who likes electronica and/or modern jazz drumming to see Mark Guiliana play would be like taking a Starbucks drinker to Intellegentsia for the first time. It's all from somewhere, the frenetic snare/hi-hat interplay, crazy synth bass lines, sampled human voices (or real humans sounding like samples), maybe Squarepusher or Venetian Snares. Yet to hear those beats played live on acoustic drums is an epiphanic event. Perhaps the most innovative and fiery young drummer since Tony Williams, Guiliana is the guy to watch in the coming years. We could be witnessing a legend in the making. With Tim Lefebvre (who plays bass on Guiliana's Meshell Ndegeocello–produced album, due out soon), Troy Zeigler on electronics and Jimmy Kimmel Live! keyboard wizard Jeff Babko. —Gary Fukushima