Indie Surf, Aussie Rock, Alien Shred



Wavves is the show people many indie types are looking forward to this week. The scrappy San Diego surf-rock band is touring in support of its released-in-March full-length Afraid of Heights. The album received positive reviews, and its single, “Demon to Lean On,” while paying homage to ’80s alternative bands like Pixies, rides big and noisy chords. My favorite Wavves tune of the moment, though, is “I Wanna Meet Dave Grohl,” a power-pop anthem about longing to meet the Foo Fighter/Nirvana drummer for reasons that have everything to do with the man’s big arms. I think. Hard to tell, since singer-guitarist Nathan Williams prefers to write obscure lyrics. Still, this should be a fun show—9 p.m. August 29, Boulevard Pool at the Cosmopolitan—and an ideal way to kick off Labor Day weekend.

Hailing from the suburban-sprawling badlands of Phoenix, three-piece punk group Moovalya plays back-to-back Las Vegas gigs, and both of these 21-and-up shows are free—10 p.m. August 30 at The Dive (4110 S. Maryland Pkwy.) and 10 p.m. August 31 at Meatheads (1121 S. Decatur Blvd.). Moovalya’s first eponymous full-length arrived this time last year, and the band’s been busy touring their butts off all across California this month. They wrap up their Summer Exposure tour with these two shows, so if you enjoy hardcore punk played loud, fast and with melodic punch, these Warped Tour veterans should impress you.

Surfing With the Alien six-string shredder Joe Satriani sets foot in the Pearl in the Palms 8 p.m. August 30. The virtuoso guitar god arrives as part of his Unstoppable Momentum tour, backed by three musicians—drummer Marco Minnemann, bassist Bryan Beller and keyboardist/guitarist Mike Keneally. Satriani has been playing two-hour concerts to raves, and his stage lighting and effects are said to be pretty cool, too. I haven’t experienced a purely instrumental rock show of this caliber in years, so I’m eager to see and hear one of the top guitarists alive bring it, well, live. Guitar legend Steve Morse (Kansas, Deep Purple) opens.

Sometimes I like to impress the too-cool-to-stump bartenders in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, by playing Drivin N Cryin songs on Internet jukeboxes of trendy watering holes. Sometimes it works! The hard-rock band from Atlanta, had a pair of heyday hits in 1990 with “Fly Me Courageous” and “Build a Fire.” But Drivin N Cryin has continued to record and tour every few years and remains one of those rare bands (like The Cult) that managed to somehow straddle the gap between alt-music fans who adored R.E.M. and heavy-metal headbangers who dug Def Leppard. Drivin N Cryin joins Winger and Hericane Alice for a few summer dates, including 7 p.m. August 31 at Santa Fe Station.

The Rock Allegiance tour—featuring a hard and heavy lineup comprising VolbeatHIMAll That Remains and Airbourne—touches down at 6:45 p.m. September 4 at The Joint. The latter, an Australian rock act, is the band I’m most eager to check out. Airbourne doesn’t obscure the fact that they strive to sound precisely like early (and fellow Outbackers) AC/DC. If you’ve heard Airbourne’s pounding, open-throttled “Live It Up,” then you know what to expect: stripper-enabling, alcohol-binging, classic car-revving rock ’n’ roll with guitar solo guaranteed every time. Not the most original ensemble in the world, sure, but who said having a blast requires any uniqueness?

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