YARD DOGS ROAD SHOW
nVaudeville is big these days. Groups like Faun Fables and their kissing cousins Sleepytime Gorilla Museum thrill young audiences with their imaginative productions. Something about fanciful sideshows excites a world weighed down by hyper-reality. Of course, Eddy Joe Cotton wasn’t jumping on a trend when he launched the Yard Dogs Road Show. It just came naturally. The former concrete-slab-layer chased trains for 10 years before teaming up with two-thirds of his retro-ragtime jug band. Now the trio backs fire-eaters, sword-swallowers and burlesque dancers (also big these days) in a traveling troupe whose sensibility is equal parts escapism, hedonism and magic'minus the David Copperfield/David Blaine ridiculous-death-defying cheese factor. Suede, 1612 Ute Blvd. (Kimball Junction), Park City, 9 p.m. Tickets: SmithsTix.com.
Also Thursday: Smashmouth (Utah State Fair); Our Dub (Egos)nn
GIGANTOUR: MEGADETH, LAMB OF GOD
nGet your horns ready for more metal than thou can handle. Gigantour offers something for everyone, save those with faint hearts and delicate ears. Don’t like shredding guitars or aggressive suggestions to “walk with me in hell”? Better avoid Lamb of God. Dig Alice Cooper covers? Check out Megadeth’s “No More Mr. Nice Guy,” a speedy-clean take on the sneering original. Swedish prog-headbangers Opeth, good ol’ fashioned Southern thrashers Sanctity, beauty/beast-fronted Arch Enemy and New Jersey wailers Overkill will also bring the noise on one of two stages. Double-bass drums attack! Usana Amphitheatre, 5400 S. 6200 West, 5:30 p.m. All-ages. Tickets: SmithsTix.com.
PAGAN DEAD CD RELEASE
nLocal heathens Pagan Dead produce the coolest harmonies this side of Hades. Death-metal growls meet Tales From the Crypt-inspired screeches to color a special blend of psychobilly hardcore. Their new album Spondalia combines that one-two vocal punch with old-school horror-film sound bytes, werewolf cries and other tricked-out studio effects that might get lost in live translation. Chances are PD’s stage show more than makes up for any AWOL production value. Club Vegas, 445 S. 400 West, 9:30 p.m. Info: ClubVegas.org (with Yaotl Mictlan and Dead City Lights).
Also Friday: Sugarcult (Avalon Theater); Lawrence Arms, The Draft (Kilby Court); Brian Jonestown Massacre (Urban Lounge); Voodoo Organist (Burt’s Tiki Lounge); Jerry Joseph & The Jackmormons (Egos); Matt Lewis Band (Huka Bar'See Music, p. 52)nn
REGGAE IN THE MOUNTAINS
nReggae In the Mountains is not, as the name suggests, actually in the mountains, but rather conveniently located downtown. Those who missed Third World two weeks ago citing insufficient funds, wheels and/or proper motivation better have a damned good reason for skipping out on the prolific reggae legends’ second stop through Utah. Natural Roots, Mana Poly All-Stars and Afro Omega are also slated to appear, but maybe the promise of tasty island-style snacks is enough of a draw? Gallivan Center, 239 S. State, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. All-ages. Tickets: SmithsTix.com.
Also Saturday: Maritime (Kilby Court); Snog (Club Vegas); Snowden (Urban Lounge); Screaming Condors (Burt’s Tiki Lounge); Jinga Boa (Black Box Theater'see Music, p. 50);nn
Nina Natasia (Kilby Court); Andrew Bird (In the Venue)nn
nI like Thunderfist. I do'and it’s not a guilty pleasure. Some slam the local rockers for playing loud, fast rock & roll while other groups turn traditional sound upside down. No doubt, experimentation makes the world go ’round, but unpretentious rock sets the world at ease. Thunderfist make music for the masses'not in a Total Request Live sort of way, but rather a let-your-hair-down-and-get-wasted-or-just-enjoy-it-sober-if-that’s-your-thing-who-cares? type of vibe. Supagroup abide by similar ethos. The New Orleans quartet breathes AC/DC intensity with live performances rooted in a courage loosely referenced in the artful tune “It Takes Balls.” Egos, 668 S. State, 9:30 p.m. Tickets: SmithsTix.com (with The Giraffes).
nSubtle aren’t all that discreet. The Oakland-based sextet’s repertoire might include blink-and-miss electronic effects tucked beside a truckload of guitar/cello/drum/bass cameos, but most tracks demand attention thanks to Jel’s insanely creative production and vocals that Doseone manipulates like Michael Winslow (see: Police Academy). For Hero: For Fool (out Oct. 3) ups the ante with grooves too delicious to ignore. The album opens with what sounds like Bruce Springsteen’s “Pink Cadillac,” severed and distorted through an ancient boombox before bursting into music for popping and locking. The remaining numbers bounce between robotic staccato, creepy echo effects, serious baritone and folktronic, dance-floor-ready grooves. If I’m wrong about Springsteen, set me straight. Contest starts now! Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 10 p.m. Tickets: 24Tix.com.
? Also Tuesday: Elton John (E Center); The Casualties (Avalon Theater); Alan Singly & Pants Machine (Broken Record)nn
? Waking Ashland (Kilby Court); Our Time In Space (Urban Lounge); Mofro (Suede, Park City)nn
Redfest (University of Utah, Sept. 21-22). Soulfly (Club Vegas, Sept. 21). X96 Big Ass Show (Utah State Fairpark, Sept. 23). Vast (Avalon Theater, Sept. 23). KMFDM (Avalon Theater, Sept. 27). Band of Horses (In the Venue, Sept. 28). The Strokes (In the Venue, Sept. 29). Gym Class Heroes (Avalon Theater, Sept. 30). Queensryche (The Depot, Sept. 30). North Mississippi All-Stars (Suede, Oct. 1). Jedi Mind Tricks (Avalon Theater, Oct. 3). Rock Steady Benefit (The Depot, Oct. 4). We Are Scientists (In the Venue, Oct. 9). Ladytron (The Depot, Oct. 10). Yo La Tengo (In the Venue, Oct. 12).