Monday, January 7
The latest youthful band to grab the coveted Monday night residency over at Detroit Bar is Huntington Beach-based Big Monsta. But their sound is anything but what that name would suggest (read: not some douchy club DJ wearing fake gold chains, nor a band playing any sub-genre containing the word "core"). The group, fronted by singer/songwriter Jimmy Hua, plays music that's cool and crisp and dreamy--check out the song "Summer Love" for a romantic mind trip back to the beach. They're new and they've got potential--plus a CD release party on the 28th, the last night of their residency. New-music-philes, this one is for you.--Erin DeWitt Tuesday, January 8
Orange County Music Awards Live Showcase
It has begun! After a few solid months of planning and deliberating, the next step in the 2013 Orange County Music Awards race kicks off six weeks of free, weekly showcases featuring the candidates for this year's Best Live Band award. Win this, and you pretty much have the right to call yourselves "da shit" for an entire year...within the county limits anyway. The first round of bands battling for OCMA supremacy include Fellow Bohemian, Alabaster Stones, Flying Sparks, Robert John and the Wreck, and The Field Trip. --Nate Jackson
Thursday, January 10
Anyone with an ounce of K-Day pride has watched with amazement this year as the slithery, half-sung flows of Layzie Krayzie, Bizzy, Wish and Flesh were resurrected not only on the airwaves but on stage for the first time in a couple years at Rock the Bells in San Bernardino. Lord knows it hasn't been easy keeping these Grammy-winning thugs together since they started in 1991. But even if this tour and subsequent untitled album they're planning as a follow up to Uni 5: The World's Enemy is their last with all five members, at least we know OC will get their last taste of one of hip-hop's most iconic rap groups. --Nate Jackson
Friday, January 11
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No, the band's not getting back together--Cheap Sex is reuniting for one night only to celebrate the ten-year anniversary of their debut album's 2003 release. And while fans are charged to once again hear the band's reckless, thrashing grade of American street punk, it's a bittersweet homecoming as Cheap Sex broke up in 2007 following the tragic death of guitarist Chris Wick--their final show was played in Fullerton. But Mike Virus, Johnny O. Negative, Gabe, Brock and Phil DeVill come back to pay homage to the wild decade they've endured since Launch Off to War launched their punk rock pilgrimage around the world. They play this night with friends and fellow tour-mates Lower Class Brats. --Erin DeWitt
Los Lobos may be an LA institution by now, but every so often--well, more often than not--they like to do something a little different. They started out as a band from the in-between places, finding a spot to call home between punk and rock and folk and even more idiosyncratic styles of music. But in 2005, they put out their Acoustic en Vivo album, which (just as you'd think) was a live Los Lobos set of traditional and original music cut back to its barest roots. Now they're doing the first of a select few California appearances at the Cerritos Center in just the same way, and if it's anything like the album, they'll be presenting Lobos classics and Lobos obscurities in between the kind of folk songs you might catch your parents singing now and then. --Chris Ziegler