Sound Menu March 12 2008

CL’s picks for the week’s best shows


EVAN McHUGH, MARS ARIZONA Atlanta crooner McHugh brings his smooth, neo-jazzy sound to Eddie’s for an evening of easy-listening MOR tunes. Pleasant to hear, but you won’t take much home with you. Opener Mars Arizona brings a unique and intriguing twist to the usually generic Americana thing, with a batch of great songs and interesting perspectives on the way things are. Get there early. $10-$50. 8 p.m. Eddie’s Attic. 404-377-4976. — James Kelly


HORRORPOPS The Danish-bred, L.A.-based punkabilly rebel rousers strip down to a three piece for their new Kiss Kiss Kill Kill album and pick up pointers in anthemic, hooky choruses from the old-school punk/new-wave rockers clearly at the heart of their sound. Frontwoman Patricia Day slaps that upright bass like an unfaithful boyfriend as guitarist/partner Necroman combines goth and surf in a crock pot of simmering angst that bubbles over with bad attitude bolstered by cool influences and a great record collection. Pink Spiders, Cute Lepers also appear. $12.50. 6 p.m. Masquerade. 404-875-1522. — Hal Horowitz

TOUBAB KREWE, BLUEGROUND UNDERGRASS, SNAKE OIL MEDICINE SHOW & DR. LOUIS SULLIVAN How many American Afro-polyrhythmic funk jam bands can you name? Same here, but after you spend an evening swirling and grooving to the amazing Toubab Krewe, you will know the one that matters. Thursday features local faves Blueground Undergrass, and Friday’s lineup includes the esoteric SOMS and the trippy Dr. Louis Sullivan. Special thanks to SOB’s staff for the new no smoking policy! $12. 8 p.m. Smith’s Olde Bar. 404-875-1522. — JK


YUNDI LI Twenty-five-year-old Chinese pianist Li is one of the youngest to win the International Chopin Piano Competition. His superb phrasing and dazzling technique have made him an international sensation, especially among mavens of music by Chopin and Liszt, thanks in part to widely distributed recordings of Li’s recitals, which exclusively feature their music. But this recital includes music by other composers as well, most notably the complete “Pictures at an Exhibition” by Modest Mussorgsky. $35-$45. 8 p.m. Ferst Center. 404-894-9600. — Mark Gresham


BYRD’S AUTO PARTS One of the most talented alumni of Atlanta’s Redneck Underground returns home for an evening of unreconstructed country music. Joining the hardcore honky tonkin’ tonight will be former Derailer Mark Horn and Nashville pedal steel legend Pete Finney, who has worked with some of the best in the biz, from the Dixie Chicks to Patty Loveless. Ice-cold PBR, country music and no smoking! It doesn’t get better than this. $7. 8 p.m. Atlanta Room at Smith’s Olde Bar. 404-875-1522. — JK

RICHARD MORRIS & THE ATLANTA SYMPHONY BRASS QUINTET Atlanta’s own world-class Symphony Brass Quintet joins forces with Spivey Hall’s organist-in-residence Morris for a majestic fusion of the Schweitzer organ’s powerful pipes with burnished brass bravado of trumpets, horn, trombone and tuba. The program’s sonic bouquet includes music by Charles Widor, J.S. Bach, William Boyce, Johannes Brahms, Anthony Dilorenzo, Charles Callahan and Eugene Gigout. $35. 3 p.m. Spivey Hall. 678-466-4200. — MG

THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS Quirky, winsome duo John Flansburgh and John Linnel laid the foundation for geek rock with their odd, herky-jerky pop paeans to Istanbul, birdhouses and puppet heads. Founded in the early ’80s, their absurdist humor found expression in videos that earned them a loyal following during MTV’s first decade. Though overshadowed by complaint rock in the ’90s, they’ve continued to release enjoyable records and lately found a new audience in kids. Last month they released their second children’s album, Here Come the 123’s. $15-$20. 6:30 p.m. (The 3 p.m. children’s matinee is sold out.) Variety Playhouse. 404-524-7354. — Chris Parker


ATLANTA COMMUNITY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA In an engaging twist of programming, the 60-member Atlanta Community Symphony Orchestra, all serious volunteer musicians, will perform music composed by four members of the big-league pro Atlanta Symphony Orchestra: violist Amy Leventhal, violinist Juan Ramirez, bassist Michael Kurth and flutist Robert Cronin. The eclectic program also includes music by Rafael Benítez, Ricardo Lorenz, Gang Chen and Zhanhao. Tenor David Ramírez, violinist Li Bing and percussionist Alcides Rodríguez are guest soloists. Juan Ramirez conducts. Free. 3 p.m. First Baptist Church of Decatur. 404-370-7682. — MG

THE ATLANTA 4TH WARD ENSEMBLE Gold Sparkle Band co-founder Roger Ruzow continues his ongoing series of improv/freeform jazz performances at Eyedrum. The theme for this show is “Democracy and Justice in the New South: An Improvisational Interpretation.” The ensemble is comprised of several of Atlanta’s greatest jazz, funk and rock musicians and composers, including Ruzow (trumpet), Kinah Boto (percussion), Ben Davis (sax), Ben Gettys (bass), Chris Case (keyboard) and several others. $5. 8 p.m. Eyedrum. — Chad Radford


LIAM FINN, MOST SERENE REPUBLIC Finn displays the same predilection for pretty, upbeat, Beatles-inflected melodies as his father, Neil (Crowded House/Split Enz). Liam founded New Zealand rockers Betchadupa in ‘99 while in his teens, and last year released his solo debut, I’ll Be Lightning, featuring catchy pop crafted and recorded entirely on his own. Performing solo, Finn’s been known to employ a looping effects pedal to layer the different instruments he plays on the album. Toronto’s MSR fashions shimmery, majestic baroque pop flowing in dreamy yet propulsive rhythms. $10. 8 p.m. Five Spot. 404-223-1100. — CP

SONS & DAUGHTERS, BODIES OF WATER On their third album, This Gift, Glasgow’s Sons & Daughters push their sound into the red with a breathless pulse. While traces of their folky beginnings remain, the brash rumble more recalls the sultry swagger of Elastica, with edgy, keening post-punk guitars emanating a dark, late-night vibe. The quartet — featuring former Arab Strap members Adele Bethel and David Gow — has fashioned its most alluring release. Los Angeles’ Bodies of Water purveys ebullient, choir-fueled pop reminiscent of Polyphonic Spree. $10. 9 p.m. The Earl. 404-522-3950. — CP


BOB MOULD The ex-Hüsker Dü/Sugar frontman leaves professional-wrestling script writing, acoustic ruminations, experimental impulses and, to a large extent, dabbling in electronics behind on his new District Line release. That comes as a relief to longtime fans who not surprisingly gravitate to Mould’s classic music — i.e., the late-’80s/early-’90s tougher, hook-oriented punk and power pop that remains vibrant, edgy and powerful, especially live, where his potent voice and commanding presence kick up the heat. The often dreamy, female-fronted Halou opens. $18-$20. 8 p.m. Variety Playhouse. 404-223-1100. — HH

DEBATE, WE VERSUS THE SHARK, FAG STATIC, THE SUNGLASSES São Palo, Brazil, trio Debate crafts a precise blend of vast and melodic post-hardcore rock and drone that evokes everyone from Don Caballero to Polvo. We Versus the Shark represents Athens, Ga.’s math-rock contingency. Atlanta’s Fag Static plays a hybrid of weirdo art rock and screaming, thrashing hardcore. Fag Static side project the Sunglasses open the show. This is a house show. 9 p.m. Donations accepted. I Can Fly House. 404-405-9296. — CR

Check out our website at Click the Music category for a full selection of Soundboard events. CL online provides the address, a map and directions from your location.

Bands/performers/venues wishing to be included in Sound Menu’s noted-acts boxes may send recordings, press material and schedules two weeks in advance to Creative Loafing c/o Rodney Carmichael, 384 Northyards Blvd., Suite 600, Atlanta, GA 30313, or e-mail information to: To be included in the listings only, e-mail venue and band schedules by Thursday at noon (for the issue that comes out the following Wednesday) to