Sound Menu May 14 2008

CL’s picks for the week’s best shows


LADYHAWK, NEVA DINOVA Like Neil Young with Crazy Horse and Roky Erickson, two influences Ladyhawk mentions in its bio, the band’s shambling, indie garage rock is emotional and unhinged to the point of nearly coming apart. That it never does, even on the bloozy, lumbering 10-minute grunge fest “Ghost Blues,” is a testament to the quartet’s restraint and focus. Omaha veterans Dinova’s sound centers around plaintive singer Jake Bellows, whose moody, introspective ramblings are best expressed in the song “No One Loves Me,” oddly one of the group’s most raucous tunes. NYC’s Vivian Girls and Johnny Buffalo & the Mutinous Noise also appear. Ticket price TBA. 9 p.m. Drunken Unicorn. 404-870-0575. — Hal Horowitz


ATLANTA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Former ASO assistant conductor and American Conducting Fellow Laura Jackson returns to lead the band in the “Symphony No. 1” by Sergei Prokofiev (the earliest definitively “neo-classical” work in standard orchestral repertoire) and the ravishingly translucent “Symphony No. 6” by Antonin Dvorak, plus the richly romantic “Violin Concerto” by Max Bruch, featuring popular Korean-American violinist Sarah Chang as guest soloist. Program repeats Fri., May 16, and Sat., May 17. $18-$70. 8 p.m. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center. 404-733-5000. — Mark Gresham

THE HIVES The much-buzzed-about Hives take their retro, black-and-white, sing-along garage rock, add a smarmy grin and pound it out like scrappy indie darlings instead of the major-label signees they are. Sure, bands like the Fleshtones have been at this for decades, but the Swedish quintet’s youth and international breeding adds an extra splash of snotty enthusiasm that explodes with frantic energy live. Get stung! Jack Oblivion opens. $18-$20. 9 p.m. Center Stage. 404-885-1365. — HH

JOHN JORGENSON QUINTET, RONNDA CADLE From the Desert Rose Band, Elton John’s band, and the Hellecasters, guitar master Jorgenson has made his mark in a big way. He’s channeling Django Reinhardt these days, and proves why he has his own signature line of Fenders. Local instrumentalist Cadle opens the show. $20-$100. 8 p.m. Eddie’s Attic. 404-377-4976. — James Kelly

TYLER RAMSEY Now that Band of Horses are indie stars, guitarist Ramsey — who joins the band on tour and also opens for it — has some breathing room to establish his own career. Tyler’s intricate finger-picked folk recalls John Fahey and Leo Kottke, but his dreamy songs float and drift around his lovely, trembling vocals. Tasteful, delicate but never bland, he creates a low-key vibe that resonates with atmospheric passion as his songs tumble out. Pat Pucket and the Meeks Family join the bill. $10. 9:30 p.m. The Earl. 770-377-4976. — HH


CARBONAS, PINCHO GRINGO Harkening to the gritty Bowery-born sounds of early NYC punk, Carbonas blend guitar crunch forever indebted to Johnny Thunders with a lean, infectious punch reminiscent of inspirations the Ramones, who wrote “Carbona Not Glue.” Last year’s self-titled debut captures the period’s sound as stark and strikingly as a Richard Avedon photo. One-man guitar and kick-drum killing field Pinche Gringo works a primal garage-blues groove like he’s got nothing else to live for, and he’d just as soon go out with his boots muddy. Ticket price TBA. 9 p.m. Drunken Unicorn. 404-870-0575. — Chris Parker

MAGNAPOP It took a more than a dozen years including an extended hiatus, but Magnapop finally matched the careening rock allure of its stunning ‘92 self-titled debut with 2005’s Mouthfeel. It had been almost nine years since its last release, but singer Linda Hopper and guitarist Ruthie Morris returned with a new rhythm section for their infectious indie rock that mixes Hopper’s lithe coo with Morris distortion-soaked hooks. Shows are still relatively infrequent, but they started work with Brian Paulson (Beck, Superchunk) on their fifth album early this year. $7. 9:30 p.m. The Earl. 404-522-3950. — CP


ARTURO O’FARRILL’S AFRO-CUBAN JAZZ ORCHESTRA Son of the late Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra leader Arturo “Chico” O’Farrill, the junior Arturo leads this band that preserves much of his dad’s music, as well as a panoply of other substantial Afro-Cuban jazz. The younger O’Farrill is not just a stand-in — he made his own mark as pianist working with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, Steve Turre, Lester Bowie and Wynton Marsalis. $36-$62. 8 p.m. Rialto Center. 404-413-9TIX. — MG

FRINGE Violinist Helen Kim and Fia Manicini Durrett, violists Tanya Maxwell Clements and Virginia Respess, and cellist Roy Harran play classical chamber music for strings in a semicasual environment. The show includes spinning by DJ Little Jen before and betwixt, a short film, and a photography exhibit by Jeremy Cowart. (Imagine what Eyedrum might be like were it far less edgy, with a safely slick haute-Dunwoody look and feel. Limited seating and parking. Advance online and student discounts. $15. 8 p.m. Church of the Redeemer, Dunwoody. 877-725-8849. — MG

JOHN PRINE, MINTON SPARKS Prine has become the voice of a generation by default; he just writes and sings his songs. But classics such as “Sam Stone” and “Paradise” have stood the test of time, and even cancer couldn’t stop him. He’s as amazing as ever, and well worth the effort to see live. Singer/storyteller Sparks is a unique artist as well, and a tasteful appetizer for this evening’s show. $48.50-$58.50. 8 p.m. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre. 770-916-2800. — JK

SUPERSUCKERS, AGAINST ME! If Van Halen’s good-time party element had a punk counterpart, it’d be the Supersuckers, whose rabid, high-revving rockabilly-tinged garage rock packs the punch of whiskey and nitroglycerine. The irreverent lyrics range from the middle-finger waving, “Supersuckers Drive-By Blues,” to satanic odes (“Born With a Tail”) and loser anthems (“Dead in the Water”), as well as the odd honky-tonk tune. Against Me! is the closest thing these days to the Clash with its fist-in-the-air politics (“White People for Peace”) and the catchy, hard-charging punk rock of its latest, New Wave. Free. 3 p.m. Centennial Olympic Park. 404-222-7275. — CP


DEKALB SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Music director Fyodor Cherniavsky leads the near-suburban DSO in a program to tickle your French inclinations, from the picturesque local color of Emmanuel Chabrier’s “Suite Pastorale” to the celestial colors of “L’Ascension” by the synesthesia-inspired Catholic mystic Olivier Messiaen. Marietta native and Chicago Symphony principal trumpeter Chris Martin is the featured guest soloist for the “Trumpet Concerto” by Henri Tomasi. Senior and student discount tickets available. $20. 8 p.m. Georgia Perimeter College — Clarkston. 678-891-3565. — MG

HOOTS & HELLMOUTH There’s a rollicking rustic revival flavor to this Philly quartet’s groovy Americana. The titular leaders, Hoots & Hellmouth, play guitar and sing accompanied by mandolin and double bass. Their rootsy rock palette ranges from bloozy ballads to bustling bluegrass and finger-picked folk delivered with fine vocals and harmonies. They’re supporting last year’s self-titled full-length debut, highlighted by “Want on Nothing,” a gospel-blues rave-up bouncier than the Blues Brothers’ “Rubber Biscuit.” $3. 7 p.m. The Melting Point. 706-254-6909. Additional show Wed., May 21, at Vinyl. $8-$10. 9 p.m. 404-885-1365. — CP

SCISSORMEN This Nashville-based duo’s pumped-up, dressed-down psychedelic garage blues is trashier than the established club’s typically more traditional fare, but that doesn’t make it any less authentic. Counting Junior Kimbrough and the Ramones as influences, guitarist/writer Ted Drozdowski is a slide-wielding madman, slinging off raw, blistering runs as he takes the blues back to the Delta with amps set to 11 and enough energy to blow every fuse in every juke joint from here to the Mississippi crossroads. $5. 9:30 p.m. Blind Willie’s. 404-872-2583. — HH

SUNNY SWEENEY It’s refreshing to hear a pretty girl from Texas singing REAL COUNTRY MUSIC again. I know, Miranda Lambert’s hot and all, but she is part of the Nashville machinery. Sweeney is doing her thing the way she wants to, and the gal can wail like Loretta when she wants to. $7. 8 p.m. Smith’s Olde Bar. 404-875-1522. — JK


ELANA JAMES & THE HOT CLUB OF COWTOWN, PLANET RIDERS DUO The Hot Club of Cowtown was one of the (cough) hottest of the late great Hightone label’s roster. They parted ways for a while and fiddler James made a great solo record. Now they’re working together again, and all is right in the world. Gypsy jazz and Western swing never sounded so good. The pop-rocking Planet Riders (duet) opens. $10-$50. 8 p.m. Eddie’s Attic. 404-377-4976. — JK

MAMMALS, BOBBY & THE SOFT SPOTS, MACK MESSIAH, VIETKANGOL Austell’s Mammals are a ramshackle three-piece that plays bare-knuckle garage rock. The group approaches the music with a pure and primitive drive that’s concerned with nothing more than churning out gruff and good old-fashioned rock ‘n’ roll songs. Kenny Crucial’s group Mack Messiah, Atlanta garage-rock degenerates Bobby & the Soft Spots and local newcomers Vietkangol also perform. $5. 9 p.m. The Drunken Unicorn. — CR

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