By Sarah Bennett
By Adam Lovinus
By Jena Ardell
By Nate Jackson
By Gustavo Arellano
By Nick Keppler
By Nate Jackson
By Alex Distefano
Photo courtesy Tag Team MediaCONVERGE AND CAVE IN
FACE OFF AFTER LAST CALL
The two Boston-reared bands Cave In and Converge are presumably on the brotherhood trip these days—they're even on a nationwide tour together. But it's a lot more fun to imagine the two bands facing off after last call for a West Side Story-styled brawl: Cave In front man Stephen Brodsky lashes his epic lyrics to wild zigzag guitar and launches them like a lighting bolt, and in response, Converge singer Jacob Bannon peels his challengers' skin off with his gruff, animalistic roar, while his band turns battering-ram behind him. Oh, yeah—and then somebody revs up a chain saw and . . . well, okay, dreams of bloodlust aside, there's no need to pit these bands against each other: they're well-suited to share a stage, a tour and a hometown. Both are carving out their own hard-rock niche, with Cave In as the willful lords of reinvention who've both enraged and enticed their fans by changing from hardcore screamers to stoner-rock virtuosos to classic-rock-cum-pop-metal with enough aplomb to confuse everyone, including their former label, RCA, with whom they split after releasing Antenna last year. Meanwhile, Converge are forcing their way to the front of the hardcore pack, having translated the success of their fourth official full-length album, Jane Doe (Equal Vision), to a contract with punk rock moguls Epitaph for their new album, You Fail Me, as blistering and brazen as anything they've done. It's bound to be a brutal show, even without the street fight afterward. (Sarah Tomlinson)
CONVERGE AND CAVE IN WITH BETWEEN THE BURIED AND SCARS OF TOMORROW AT THE GLASS HOUSE, 200 W. SECOND ST., POMONA, (909) 469-5800. SUN., 7 p.m. $12.50. ALL AGES.
I MISS YOU TOO
They're currently the band du jour in Los Angeles, but three-piece Midnight Movies has seemingly had an easy road since they formed in 2002—and it's only going to get easier, thanks to their critically acclaimed (and self-produced!) Strange Design EP and opening slots for Bardo Pond, Broadcast and Clinic. But we live in a fickle world—if you don't live up to the hype, there's no coming back—and so the next-big-thing pressure was on for Midnight Movies' debut self-titled full-length (out now on Emperor Norton). Happily, it shows they're up to the expectations—thanks largely to the ethereal voice of Gena Olivier, a mix of Nico and Stereolab's Laetitia Sadier that lends solemnity to the Midnight Movies' dark, moody, sometimes chaotic songs. When the band picks up the tempo on a choppy, dizzy song such as "Mirage," it's Olivier's voice that holds steady: "I miss you/I miss you, too/or perhaps the feeling of wanting to . . ." As a tight three-piece (Olivier plays drums as well!), the only thing you may find missing from the album is a bigger sound, though the hints are there in guitarist Larry Schemel and keyboardist/guitarist Jason Hammons' foggy soundscapes. Live, it's a different story: you can't bottle the tension and beauty of a band like this when they're right in front of your face. Even the quietest parts swell with with dreamy guitar, and Olivier's vocals reach out all the way to the back of the room. (Alex Roman)
Ritchie Valens is a Chicano hero, one of the first Mexican-American singers to cross over to the American mainstream back in the 1950s, when Valensskfjwalk [suddenly, Gustavo Arellano begins convulsing. His eyes roll back. He begins warbling an a capella version of "La Bamba." He composes himself, whips his hair back into a slick D.A. and begins typing again]. Now it can be told! I, Ritchie Valens, returned to earth on Feb. 3, 1979, in the body of Gustavo Arellano, exactly 20 years to the minuteafter I died in an Iowa plane crash. Buddy Holly wanted to come back that same day, too; together, that explains Gustavo's Latino ethnicity, thick glasses, goofy voice anlksjfdkl [Gustavo convulses again]. We're not talking about the souls within my brain; we're talking about Valens' music—proto-Chicano garage rock that people continue to spin. Every Latino between 25 and 35 owns the soundtrack to La Bamba—that would be the album with killer Valens covers by Eastlos favorites Los Lobos. Valens is also first Latino enshrined in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fameaslfdj;als [Gustavo convulses again. He screeches the opening chords of "Framed" and types anew]. Don't listen to that pocho Gustavo! No one gives a damn about me anymore. Sure, there's a tribute to me scheduled for this Friday at the Galaxy Concert Theatre, but did they hire Los Lobos? Nope! ¿Quien chingado es this Lil' Luis? I could probably find better musicians if I took a pickup truck to Home Depotsaljflk [Gustavo convulses again and begins screaming obscenities in English and Spanish. He collapses]. [EDITOR'S NOTE: Gustavo Arellano wasactually born on the exact same day that Sid Vicious died, which explains why he's always cursing and can't play bass for shit.] (Gustavo Arellano and friends)
A TRIBUTE TO RICHIE VALENS WITH L'IL LUIS BACKED BY DEKE DICKERSON AND THE ECCO-FONICS AND VICKY TAFOYA AND THE BIG BEAT PLUS GUEST STARS AT THE GALAXY CONCERT THEATRE, 3503 S. HARBOR BLVD., SANTA ANA, (714) 957-0600. FRI., 8 P.M. $12.50. ALL AGES.