LA DISPUTE, FORMER THIEVES, NATIVE
At 9 p.m. Friday, May 13
Sweet Melissa's, 35 Whitaker St.
In the post-hardcore universe, wherein steely punk bands find (and fornicate with) alternate modes of expression to drop into the swirling mix (in the grand tradition of Fugazi, Jawbox and Sunny Day Real Estate, to name-drop but a few), Michigan's La Dispute has come up fast through the ranks. These guys are not loathe to experiment, be it through spoken-word poetry, Green Day-ish orchestrations or melodies balanced between the high-watt slam and the acoustic caress. The band has released seven EPs (including one consisting almost exclusively of Christmas poetry) and its second full-length drops at any moment.
"We don't really differentiate between post-hardcore and hardcore or punk," La Dispute vocalist Jordan Dreyer told absolutepunk.net. "We never set down to write songs as a post-hardcore band, we just wanted to make music, and this is what came out."
In April of 2010, Alternative Press said La Dispute was one of "The 100 Bands You Need to Know."
"We're certainly not a typical sounding ‘hardcore' band, but people who focus on that area of alternative music have been very open to the music we make," Dreyer added. "I think because they sense that we exist because of the principles that have made punk and hardcore such a powerful part of culture."
The band's labelmates, Former Thieves, have a new one out, The Language That We Speak.
CHILLED MONKEY BRAINS
With Assassinate the Scientist, Corporate Fandango
At 9 p.m. Saturday, May 14
Wormhole Bar, 2307 Bull St.
There are two trombones in this Tallahassee, Florida band - aha! Ska! Well, yes, CMB is a ska/punk group, meaning their music is fast, and abrasive and punchy, and there are trombones. Killer fast guitar, skittery drums, liquid bass and freaky synthesizer. The song titles are just as irreverent as the band moniker - there's "Snake to My Mongoose," "Debbie Gibson," "Note to Self" and "Apocalypse Now."
I come from Gainesville, the "other" college town in Florida, and I watched Less Than Jake grow from a ska-core buzz band into a national treasure. These guys remind me of LTJ - it's all about energy, and fast-tempo fun. And, incidentally, Gainesville is home base for the punk trio Assassinate the Scientist ("I've Got a Bono to Pick With You," "Naked Bingo 5 on the Moon"), also playing this bill. And there you go.