abrasive, vicious beats
Over twenty years ago, Ministry hit the scene as a synth-pop project fronted by multi-instrumentalist Al Jourgensen. They evolved: first more industrial, then metal, then hardbeat psychobilly infused with tons of sampling. Always abrasive, loud and emotionally vicious, the band, along with Nine Inch Nails, ruled the industrial dance music scene in the '90s thanks to hits like "Stigmata." Most recently, they've released Houses of the Molé, which features the anti-Bush ditty "No W" that first surfaced on the Rock Against Bush compilation. Opening the show are Hanzel Und Gretyl and Opiate For the Masses, not My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult, as previously announced.
Friday, November 12, 8 p.m., $25, Big Easy.
soothing instrumental jazz
Frim Fram Fellas
There's something about instrumental jazz that makes welcoming winter a little nicer. And what with folks being especially crabby this second week in November, we could all use some cheer. The Frim Fram Fellas do instrumental jazz well, and for this engagement they've invited a special guest. Established jazz pianist Chuck Smith will join in with the vibraphone; Smith is a master who has played with jazz greats all over the world. Add the vibraphone to the Frim Fram Fellas' regular guitar-bass-piano routine and you've got a way cool blend that ought to prep us for the harsh conditions ahead.
Friday and Saturday, November 12-13, 7:30 p.m., FREE, Gamekeeper Lounge, Owyhee Plaza Hotel.
The look of classical music is changing. Once it was all George Costanza look-alikes. Now thanks to Bond, an all-female string quartet, classical music is much sexier. The London-based ladies have mixed up the starched-tux stereotype; they are equal parts supermodel and furious musicians, hailed the Spice Girls of classical music. I have a hard time equating the two--mostly because there were five Girls of Spice and Bond is comprised of four females. In early 2001 the group released Born, which offered a classical mix of salsa, house and European folk. But they are on tour with a new disc called Classified, and their show is no come-wearing-a-suit ordeal; it's a fully engaging event. They actually choreograph numbers, and I think one of them has a tongue ring.
Saturday, November 13, 8 p.m., $28, Big Easy.
so-cal pop punk
I recently got my first cavity. There's a pit in my molar because 90 percent of my diet is candy. I consider myself part of a sugar cult--those of us in the office who grab rather than scoff at the receptionist's bottomless bowl of seasonal sweets. The Santa Barbara-based quartet Sugarcult, however, is not of the same sect. The pop-punk group, often likened to Good Charlotte and Blink-182, took its name from band members' lesbian neighbors, not an appreciation of the candy-er things in life. Sugarcult has a relatively grassroots attitude toward promotion, if you consider two years of constant touring grassroots.
Sunday, November 14, 7:30 p.m., $13, Big Easy.
A little slice of heaven is coming to Boise. And by heaven I mean MTV2's Headbangers Ball, and by little slice I mean Shadows Fall, an established progressive death metal band from Massachusetts that's apparently trying to penetrate mainstream music. Gonna be tough on that bill, but their record label refers to them as the "Second Coming" in American heavy metal, which is close enough. Their new album The War Within is an attempt at niche carving, creating an identifiable sound that's somewhere between metalcore and more melodic, lighter '80s metal. Get scared: The Haunted opens.
Monday, November 15, 7:30 p.m., $13.50, Big Easy.
jump because it feels so good
With a 25-year career and almost a dozen number one hit singles, everyone has a place in his or her heart for Van Halen. And I Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love necessarily, but a touch of fondness or perhaps a memory of when they Danced the Night Away one spring break in Panama. Not only has the Grammy Award-winning band sold more than 75 million albums worldwide, Van Halen is also in the Guinness Book of World Records for the most Number One rock tracks at album radio. With Sammy Hagar at the helm this time around, the band is Back to Finish What They Started. It's been nine years since the seminal rockers have toured, and that alone is reason to Jump with excitement and be on Top of the World because it Feels So Good.
Tuesday, November 16, 7:30 p.m., $50-$90, Idaho Center Arena.
cheap discs make great gifts
Boise State's fall CD sale
Just when you thought it was time for Thanksgiving, merchants swoop in and launch holiday sales. Here's one sale that's cool to shop for Xmas gifts or just because: Boise State Radio's first fall CD sale. Usually Boise State sells new and used recordings as a fundraiser in May, but who can wait that long for cheapie discs? All CDs are $3, but if you buy six full-length CDs you get two more for free!
November 11-13, Th: 11 a.m.-6 p.m., F: 8 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sa: 8 a.m.-noon, Boise State Student Union Johnson Room, Boise State campus. :