Darkness Rains, is a collection of mostly uptempo hard-rock, grunge and punk blasts. But with such tracks as “More Dead,” “Wear Black” and “(One Less Thing) Before I Die,” the aptly titled record is heavier — both musically and emotionally — and much more morbid than previous releases. “Born Again and Again” begins with spidery strands of guitar before shifting into a kind of shadowy goth metal. Secret Stare are a new local band fronted by Hunx & His Punx drummer Erin Emslie with guitarist Sharif Dumani and former Death Valley Girls bassist Alana Amram. Emslie is a mysteriously alluring presence as she casts out bewitching imprecations and girl-group melodies against a psychedelic, hard-rock attack. Salt Lick and Adult Parts also play.
With singer Bonnie Bloomgarden’s endearingly unpredictable stage patter and irrepressible personality paired with guitarist Larry Schemel’s driving, unrelenting riffs, Death Valley Girls are a fun, energetic band. The L.A. quartet’s latest album,