Pastoral Indie, Comic Pop and Guilty Punk

Indie-folk ensemble Lord Huron is from L.A., but its majestic, big-sky sound is perfect for our desert landscape. The band’s debut last year, Lonesome Dreams (see my Nov. 1 review in Vegas Seven), is one I never tire of spinning—from the interstellar cowboy-gallop of “Ends of the Earth” to harmonica-haunted ballad “The Ghost on the Shore.” Layers of acoustic and electric guitars wash over the listener like sand ripples in a desert. Lord Huron plays Beauty Bar at 10 p.m. July 18, and I can’t wait to be in the thrall of a lush, widescreen-sounding rock group.

At 5 p.m. July 19 in Henderson’s Eagle Aerie Hall (310 W. Pacific Ave.), Vegas pop-punk band Ministry of Love plays its first all-ages show in almost a year. The show also kicks off the band’s first tour in a long time—from Utah to New York City. The Ministry recently released two singles, “Bus Pass” and “Better Sorry Than Safe,” via iTunes, and they contain a few surprisingly blues-based, straight-up-rockin’ guitar riffs. Also on the bill: Scream the Lie, Dennis Is Dead and Set Your Anchor, with locals Apex of Apathy, Tonight We Fight and Azalea.

The little Las Vegas indie-punk label that could, SquidHat Records, has been busy signing local bands. In addition to recording and distributing new material by these groups, SquidHat has been re-releasing neglected or obscure albums by Peccadilloes and Guilty by Association. The latter is enjoying a re-mastered double-disc release of its first two albums, Detox and American Decay. The CD party (10 p.m. July 19 at the Triple B) features Guilty by Association, Surrounded by Thieves, The Quitters and Soto St. Guilty was birthed in 2001, and over the years the band has shared stages with everyone from Dead Kennedys to Circle Jerks. After the party, they go on a two-week tour across the U.S., from Arizona to Chicago.

Nerd-rockin’ Seattle band Kirby Krackle returns to play a new Downtown comics shop called Supernova Comics (450 E. Fremont St., Suite 167) in Neonopolis at 6 p.m. July 21. The band just dropped new disc Sounds Like You (see my July 4 review in Vegas Seven), which sounds like your favorite power-pop artist singing about Spider-Man and Peter Parker’s split identities (“Web-Slinger/Hope-Bringer”), and the fun we had as kids baking treats with our grandparents (“Grandma’s House”).

Pinch my Doc Martens, or is British goth-rock king Peter Murphy really playing LVCS at 9 p.m. July 24? If you know anything about the Brit-goth scene, you know Murphy fronted Bauhaus starting in 1978. He and his bandmates called it quits in ’83, and while they formed the successful Love & Rockets, Murphy went on to release an acclaimed solo effort Deep in ’89. He’s released five albums since and inspired everyone from fantasy author Neil Gaiman to Crow comic-book artist James O’Barr. Dude looks like a legend!

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Rockers on a Roll


Rockers on a Roll

By Camille Cannon

It’s been a little more than a year since Alabama Shakes released its first album, Boys & Girls. With a sound that recalls the soulful rock ’n’ roll of a past era, the record earned the Athens, Alabama, group three Grammy nominations—including Best New Artist and Best Rock Performance. Before they play Las Vegas on July 19, the band is taking a brief break, writing material with the plans to record a follow-up album in the fall.