Tonight, take in some local goodness at Woodshed (61 E. 800 South) with Glinting Gems, The Rubes and Vile Blue Shades. Also on tap, SLC jazz act John Henry plays Speakeasy.
Or, hit up In the Venue for Youth Brigade. Celebrated and respected throughout the independent punk community, the Los Angeles-based act and BYO Records, the label founded by members Shawn and Mike Stern, are otherwise largely unrecognized for their role in helping to pioneer the DIY backbone of a thriving underground scene. Twenty-five years after the group’s inception, the Jeff Alulis-directed Let Them Know: The Story of Youth Brigade, aims to school unwitting viewers on their importance through concert footage and interviews with peers/fans, including Ian MacKaye, himself no stranger to keeping it real. Tonight, check out Youth Brigade live, then head over to Spy Hop for a SLUG-sponsored screening of the film (available as a CD/DVD with 31 tracks and a coffee-table book) followed by a Q&A with the band. In the Venue, 579 W. 200 South, 6 p.m. All-ages. Tickets: SmithsTix.com
On Saturday, check out Sunset Rubdown, whose latest release Dragonslayer continues his love affair with intricate language and epic fantasies. The group’s third studio LP is arguably more instantly appealing and accessible, though, than their previous efforts—a medieval-lit dissertation you can dance to. Tune-Yards, aka Merrill Garbus, opens with a set of experimental lo-fi folk. The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 9 p.m.
Also tomorrow, Will Sartain celebrates the release of his latest album, For Love, with an all-ages set featuring Band of Annuals, The Continentals and others with a coinciding Kilby Fest party. 741 S. 330 West
Sunday, Joan Osborne, Paul Thorn and The Holmes Brothers, performing live at Park City's Eccles Center for the Performing Arts. If you can't or don't want to head up the canyon, don't miss Weinland, opening up for Greensky Bluegrass at The State Room (638 S. State). Portland’s largely unsung heroes are decidedly darker in tone than the evening's headliners, particularly on La Lamentor (2007), which to this day frontman Adam Shearer can’t listen to for long without feeling ill. The lushly orchestrated, yet beautifully understated folk album touches on his experiences working in a mental-health facility, a position he vacated after one-too-many nightmarish shifts. The Portland quintet’s latest LP, Breaks in the Sun, follows a brighter period for the largely unsung heroes (though they paid for it with their 401Ks), but Shearer’s voice still carries the weight of the world. Wise and melancholy, it’s both comforting and utterly cold.