Sonic Spectrum Tribute to Cheap Trick
Things don't seem to be going so hot in the Cheap Trick camp this summer. Former drummer Bun E. Carlos is suing the band for several hundred thousand dollars, and singer Robin Zander's doddering, electroshock stage presence leaves the impression that he might break a hip at any moment. So this tribute show honoring the arena-rock band — featuring performances by locals the Dead Girls and Federation of Horsepower — might actually end up being better than the real thing.
Sunday, September 15, at RecordBar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
The Paul Collins Beat
Because of his work in the Nerves and the Beat, Paul Collins enjoys cult-hero status in the world of power-pop enthusiasts. His current band, the Paul Collins Beat, cheekily titled its 2010 album King of Power Pop! It delivers exactly the kind of delicious, melodic hooks you'd expect from a record with such a name. On this Midwestern tour, Collins has recruited like-minded local acts to support at every stop. Here, we'll be treated to the Dead Girls (whose drummer, Eric Melin, is fresh home from Finland, where he was recently crowned Air Guitar World Champion) and Kinks acolytes Rev Gusto.
Wednesday, September 18, at RecordBar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
Crossroads Music Fest
The ninth annual Crossroads Music Fest features a couple of new venues — jazz club Green Lady Lounge and restaurant Collection — but is otherwise the same roots-centric celebration of local music that it has been in recent years. On the bill: She's a Keeper, Dead Voices, the Grisly Hand, Hearts of Darkness and about 15 more acts at six different venues. It's $15 in advance, $20 at the gate; see cmfkc.com for the full schedule.
Saturday, September 14, at various downtown venues
Mobb Deep, with Mac Lethal
Queens rap duo Mobb Deep is, by now, a legend in the world of hip-hop, and this year, Havoc and Prodigy are celebrating their 20th anniversary of hardcore, East Coast raps that scare the shit out of people. Mac Lethal's white-boy, slacker hip-hop should help lighten the mood.
Tuesday, September 17, at Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179)
A quartet of 19-year-olds from Chicago, Twin Peaks calls to mind a revved-up Real Estate: lots of dreamy reverb and mellowed-out lyrics but performed with the urgency of a restless garage-rock band. Its single, "Stand in the Sand," is pretty hard to argue with.
Tuesday, September 17, at Czar (1531 Grand, 816-421-0300)
Danny Brown and Action Bronson
The 2 High 2 Die tour, as they're calling this jaunt, is a triple stack of unnerving performers. The Detroit rapper Danny Brown dresses the part of indie-rock star (asymmetrical haircut, tight jeans), smokes blunt after blunt, has battled depression, and raps largely about sex and Adderall. (He also famously received a blow job onstage at a show in Minneapolis earlier this year.) Action Bronson is an overweight redhead from Queens who has a Ghostface-like delivery and whose aesthetic (shout-outs to obscure professional wrestlers like Marty Jannetty; song titles such as "Strictly 4 My Jeeps"; a healthy amount of misogyny) is often ridiculous to the point of winking self-parody. Trash Talk is a hardcore act from California best known for its aggressive, destroy-the-room live performances.
Wednesday, September 18, at Liberty Hall (644 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-1972)
Flatlands Music Festival
No soccer out at Sporting Park this weekend — cowboy hats, not scarves, will be the preferred accessory. The Flatlands Music Festival kicks off with the Charlie Daniels Band, among others, on Thursday. Darius Rucker and Luke Bryan headline on Friday. And Miranda Lambert, Kellie Pickler and Toby Keith bring it all home on Saturday night. See the full lineup at flatlandsfestival.com.
Thursday, September 12, through Saturday, September 14, at Sporting Park (1 Sporting Way, Kansas City, Kansas, 800-493-3378)