Upcoming Shows: Flashlights, Gardens, CHVRCHES

CHVRCHES play Brooklyn Bowl Sept. 21

CHVRCHES play Brooklyn Bowl Sept. 21

Orlando, Florida, punk band Flashlights illuminates Beauty Bar at 10 p.m. September 19. Big, fat vocal melodies and unorthodox, often-shimmering guitar chords put these guys a cut above your average Ramones-genuflecting rock act. This summer, Flashlights dropped a full-length called Bummer Summer. It’s a bittersweet collection of adolescent longing and existential despair, but it’s all put to the catchiest (yet still quite aggressive) music. Also on the bill: Paws and Total Slacker.

I’d heard plenty of synth-rock before landing on Gardens & Villa’s Bandcamp page. But there’s something about this Santa Barbara-based ensemble that speaks to my guilty-pleasure side—you know, that secret longing to indulge in a marathon of John Hughes films from the ’80s. The band released its second album, Dunes, earlier this year, and it’s full of hypnotic moments, like the keyboard-glitched, falsetto-crooned “Bullet Train” and the spectral journey of “Domino.” Garden & Villas will blossom in Bunkhouse Saloon at 10 p.m. September 20.

Scottish female-fronted electronica trio Chvrches will make you a devotee at Brooklyn Bowl at 9 p.m. September 21. The band’s debut last year, The Bones of What You Believe, is among 2013’s best discs. Take “The Mother We Share,” which straddles that delicious line between Reagan-era pop-schlock a la Thompson Twins and current epic-synth groups a la M83. Indeed, Chvrches is both pop-oriented and artful, and I’m just tickled Miami Vice-pink to see this red-hot act.

If that’s too much candy-coated keyboard-humping, let me suggest a CD-release event for Smoke in Mirrors, the new disc by UNLV Jazz Ensemble I (led by Dave Loeb and Nathan Tanouye) and UNLV Latin Jazz Ensemble (led by Uli Geissendoerfer). The two groups strut their stuff at 2 p.m. September 21 in Artemus Ham Concert Hall. The concert also stars multi-woodwind musician Bob Sheppard.

Your band releasing new music? Email Jarret_Keene@Yahoo.com.

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