Kick off the night right at Slowtrain (221 E. Broadway) for a free, all-ages performance by Norfolk and Western in preview of their Wednesday night In the Venue gig featuring Wye Oak, Mirah and Blitzen Trapper. Tonight's in-store starts at 6 p.m. but remember to sign up for the shop's newsletter to gain entry.---
Also playing an all-ages set at Kilby Court (741 S. 330 West), Nurses and Le Loup whose latest release on Hardly Art, Family, contains elements of Animal Collective - a vibrant wash of electronic and organic sounds.
Over at Urban Lounge (241 S. 500 East), it's Gossip feat. Beth Ditto! She seems to lead a charmed life these days, soaking up new celebrity in Europe, bearing it all on the cover of major music magazines and never apologizing for who she is—a fabulous, sassy, feminist post-punk soul singer who drapes her “plus-size” body in haute couture and then rips it all off onstage in a sweat-drenched frenzy. But while Ditto hob-knobs with Kate Moss and Karl Lagerfeld at high-profile fashion shows, she never forgets “the faggots and the dykes” who helped boost the small-town band to such great heights. Ditto is a role model to many and a joy to watch. Opening for Le Tigre at Club Sound in 2004, Gossip nearly upstaged the legendary headliners with songs showcasing her Earth-shattering howl. Five years later, the band—also featuring long-time drummer Hannah Blilie and founding guitarist Brace Paine—is back in town in support of the new Rick Rubin-produced Music for Men, which, much to loyal listeners’ relief, doesn’t gloss over their fierce, raw attitude. Also on tonight’s bill, Le Tigre-offshoot Men, a socially/politically active DJ/production/remix team and performing arts collective featuring JD Samson, Michael O’Neill (Princess, Ladybug Transistor) and Ginger Brooks Takahashi—former touring member Joanna Fatemen still contributes behind the scenes. It’s dance music for revolution!
Calexico fans should probably mosey on over to Burt's Tiki Lounge (726 S. State) for Marianne Dissard who is currently on tour in support of L'Entredeux. Produced by Calexico’s Joey Burns (whom she met upon relocating to Tucson and falling in love with its vibrant arts community), the French-language album touches on her divorce following 13 years of marriage. Her smoky voice drapes seductively over Burns’ lush instrumental arrangements, creating an intense vibe—cabaret meets cowboy or Southwestern trailblazer buzzed on fine wine.
Last but certainly not least, Great Lake Swimmers headline The State Room (638 S. State) with Austin's Wooden Birds. You can read all about the Canadian wonders here.