You’ll need to stock up on energy drinks and earplugs

I’m either going to have to clone myself or develop a serious meth habit in order to keep up with the excellent live music happening this week in Las Vegas.

Let’s start with New York-by-way-of-Denton, Texas, chillwave act Neon Indian at House of Blues on Oct. 14. The brainchild of Mexican-American Alan Palomo, Neon Indian last year released Psychic Chasms, a crushed-up, blissed-out electronic opus that I never tire of spinning. The track “Deadbeat Summer” is psychedelic candy that melts in your ears like a tab of acid on the tongue. You won’t need drugs to bask in the sunshine of this music; it’s that good.

Unsigned baroque-popsters Kinch take command of The Bunkhouse on Oct. 15. If you miss the good old days of the Elephant 6 collective, then this Phoenix-based quartet delivers melodically winding, catchy tunes that rival Squeeze, Elvis Costello and other hook-crafting heroes. The guys who organize Neon Reverb have been booking some incredible shows at The Bunkhouse, and apparently they have a hard-on for guitar-happy Minor Suns, since the band is once again opening. If you’re more in a mood to suffer hearing loss that night, let me suggest Chapel Hill, N.C.’s bearded hard-rock avengers Valient Thorr at Las Vegas Country Saloon. Most of the time, these dudes sound like a bluesy, punked-out Judas Priest, but it’s their AC/DC-inspired “Tomorrow Police,” a futuristic, libertarian-edged paranoid tale of an encroaching police state, that stands out. Been digging this band since I saw ’em open for Motörhead a couple years ago. Portland stoner-rock outfit Red Fang opens, and these guys kill on disc. Live? Let’s find out.

Even more volume and testosterone will be generated by Alice in Chains, Deftones and Mastodon, as these three powerhouse acts lay siege to The Joint on Oct. 16. (The show’s sold out, but there’s always Craigslist.) While I’m not a fan of these bands (mainly because I’m afraid listening to them will give me jock itch), I’ll put personal taste aside and admit this is one of the year’s bigger heavy-rock shows in Vegas. Bring Lotrimin, and you should be fine, ladies. Or take a more indie-rock route that evening with Scotland’s Frightened Rabbit at Beauty Bar, a show that was rescheduled from earlier this year. If you like Modest Mouse, you should enjoy the delicate, angular songcraft, especially as heard in Rabbit’s 2010 album, The Winter of Mixed Drinks, which earned rave reviews. Also, this will be a see-and-be-seen-at show, so wear your best hipster garb. That same night, out of nowhere, producer Don Was’ quirky pop project, Was (Not Was), which garnered much acclaim and attention in the ’80s, performs at Rocks Lounge in Red Rock hotel-casino.

It gets loud again with the Jägermeister Music Tour on Oct. 20, with Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax at The Pearl. Like I said, too much incredible music crammed into the next seven days. Please, God, give me the strength to absorb it all, especially the evil Slayer.

Suggested Next Read

Schoolhouse Rut

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Schoolhouse Rut

In Waiting for ‘Superman,’ documentarian Davis Guggenheim petitions the same level of cultural awareness about American education myths as his film An Inconvenient Truth delivered regarding global warming. The filmmakers methodically explore America’s public education crisis with data and graphs that show how the majority of U.S. high schools have become “drop-out factories.” With U.S. students’ math scores lagging behind 30 other countries, you know we’re in trouble.



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