RVA Shows You Must See This Week 10/14-10/20

by | Oct 14, 2015 | SHOW PICKS

Friday, October 16, 9:30 PM
Torche, Pontiak, Snack Truck, Snakehole @ Hardywood – $13 in advance/$15 at the door (order tickets here: http://torchehardywood.eventbrite.com)

Florida metal heroes Torche have been around for over a decade now, and they’ve come a long way. Their various Richmond shows have proven this; in ten years, they’ve gone from rocking the basement of a sushi restaurant (RIP Nara) to blasting the roof off a deluxe craft brewery, as they will do this Friday night.

Friday, October 16, 9:30 PM
Torche, Pontiak, Snack Truck, Snakehole @ Hardywood – $13 in advance/$15 at the door (order tickets here: http://torchehardywood.eventbrite.com)

Florida metal heroes Torche have been around for over a decade now, and they’ve come a long way. Their various Richmond shows have proven this; in ten years, they’ve gone from rocking the basement of a sushi restaurant (RIP Nara) to blasting the roof off a deluxe craft brewery, as they will do this Friday night. Torche recently released their excellent fourth LP, Restarter, on which they’ve further refined the unique doom-pop sound they’ve been bringing to an adoring world since 2008’s Meanderthal. They’ll be rocking all in attendance at Hardywood with a stunning display of downtuned yet extremely catchy monster riffs, and you should definitely be there, prepared to headbang.

Pontiak’s another profoundly heavy band with a decade-long history that you should be aware of, considering this trio of brothers hails from right here in Virginia. Rather than exploring Torche’s territory of bizarrely catchy doom metal, Pontiak dig into the world of extremely heavy psychedelic grooves, landing on a sound that’s closer to Dead Meadow than Black Sabbath. Regardless, if you’re down with some heavy, stoned-out grooves, you’re going to find a lot to like in their sound.

Local support for this fine evening comes from Snack Truck, who’ve been keeping a low profile lately but have, again, over a decade of history to draw from, fueling their fascinating and unusual instrumental sound. This quartet inverts the typical two guitars/bass/drums rock-band formulation, hitting the stage with two drummers and only one guitarist; the resulting rhythmically complex chaos will reward close attention but is also great for rocking out. The evening begins with a set from Miami noise-punk duo Snakehole, which you won’t want to miss. Indeed, you won’t want to miss a single minute of this show full of heavy noise awesomeness. Get your tickets now!

Wednesday, October 14, 10 PM
Prude Boys, Naked Baby, Hot Dolphin @ En Su Boca – $5

Tonight, En Su Boca continues in its quest to be the first name you turn to for garage punk-loving taco joints. The latest awesome garage band to perform amidst this sea of deliciousness is Prude Boys, a Detroit trio who, despite the name, feature a mixed-gender lineup. What’s more, they’ve got a ton of catchy songs, as demonstrated on their freshly-released EP Family Style Glamour. The alternating male-female vocals and tuneful guitar leads keep things pleasantly melodic, while the no-frills rhythm section injects a solid hit of punk rock energy. It all adds up to some pretty excellent jams.

Naked Baby have been a popular name in RVA garage jams for a while now, and they’re definitely way more down n’ dirty than Prude Boys. No pretty singing or melodic guitar leads here; these dudes just grunge it up with some serious rawness. That doesn’t make their songs any less addictive though, so be prepared to love every minute of it. Hot Dolphin round out this lineup with their own patented garage-punk sound, topping some fun and energetic tunes with the madcap performance of constantly-in-motion frontwoman Lindsey Spurrier, who’ll definitely take this show to another level with her antics–while not diminishing the quality of the actual music one iota. It’s gonna rule, so grab a taco and get ready for some seriously rockin’ tunes.

Thursday, October 15, 9 PM
Among The Rocks And Roots, Lou Breeders, Antelope King, Hoax Hunters @ Strange Matter – $5

Strange Matter’s been throwing some rad locals-only shows lately, and this excellent bill is just their latest attempt to catch you all up on what’s happening with the underground music scene around town. Honestly, if you haven’t heard Among The Rocks And Roots yet, I don’t know what’s been going on with you–this bass/drum duo has made quite a name for themselves locally over the past year with a bunch of incredible live performances and a remarkable four-song, 80-minute cassette release, Samudra Garba Pathe. Regardless of whether you are nodding in recognition of everything I’m saying here or have no idea what I’m talking about, you’re going to want to be at Strange Matter tomorrow night to see these dudes lay waste to everything in their path with a wall of powerful noise.

There are other bands on the bill that will also be worth discovering; Lou Breeders walk a fine line between “local” and “out-of-town” for this show; the Norfolk quintet probably won’t have to drive much farther than a band from the farthest reaches of West End suburbia to get to this show, so we’ll call it close enough. Expect some fun punk bashing from this crew. Fredericksburg-to-RVA transplants Antelope King will do their best to revive an awesome 90s noise-core sound, evoking the glory days of Kepone, Unwound, or early Shellac with their choppy rage. Finally, Hoax Hunters may be just about to release a brand new EP, Clickbait, on Friday, but they’ll be represented on this evening solely by frontman PJ Sykes. Can we expect moody acoustic sounds or some sort of drum machine-backed ragefest? Only one way to find out…

Friday, October 16, 9 PM
Suppressive Fire, All Hell, Narrow Grave, 3:33 @ 25 Watt – $5

Between Two Beers Promotions may celebrate a sort of consumption I make it a point not to engage in, but the results of their recent efforts to bring heavy, metallic bands to RVA have certainly pleased me. Their latest effort sees a couple of North Carolina bands with some major D-beat influences come to 25 Watt to light up Shockoe Bottom, and I for one am stoked about it. Raleigh’s Suppressive Fire have a strong 80s thrash vibe on their 2014 Hellwraith EP (featuring such excellent song titles as “Nazi Face Melter” and “The Christian Crippler”), but there’s a distinct appreciation for dark, metallic punk riffs that infects their sound; the fact that they’ve covered Black Flag and Bathory should tell you all you need to know.

Fellow North Carolinians All Hell have been around for a while, but they’ve taken things to a new level with second LP The Red Sect, which is actually due for release on Friday night. If they have copies at the show, you’re going to want to pick it up–between their singer’s throaty rage, the speedy rhythms, and all those excellent riffs, this record is a metallic punk/punkish-metal fan’s dream. Their performance at this show is sure to be more of the same, so don’t miss it! DC thrashers Narrow Grave and local crossover merchants 3:33 will kick things off with more headbang-heavy sounds; get stoked for it!

Saturday, October 17, 7 PM
Elbow Room presents Ghoul’s Night: an RRFP Fundraiser, feat. Wandcarver, Hash Cult, Partition @ Gallery 5 – $5-20 donation

OK, I know this show takes place two full weeks before Halloween, but are you really going to complain? It’s never too early in the month of October to dress up and get spooky–especially for a show the proceeds of which will go to benefit the Richmond Reproductive Freedom Project. After all, as feminist punk collective Elbow Room (the brains behind this particular event) remind us, the only thing scarier than Halloween is lack of reproductive choice. So get your Halloween costume together a little early this year, and come party in support of the RRFP!

Don’t worry, I’m gonna tell you about the music at this show too! Wandcarver are your headliners, and these Norfolk weirdos will be bringing us a strange mixture of psychedelic postpunk weirdness, electronic programming, and experimental noise. It’s impossible to fully prepare for what will come from a Wandcarver live performance, so just get ready for something unique and unforgettable. Hash Cult are an up-and-coming noise-rock crew who started as a total wall of craziness and have slowly worked their way back towards a more defined sludge-punk sound. There’s still plenty of chaos floating around in there, though. Partition will start the evening with some upbeat grunge-punk tuneage that’s guaranteed to get all the spooky ghosts and ghouls dancing. Get stoked!

Sunday, October 18, 7 PM
Radiator Hospital, Stay In, Smoke Break @ Strange Matter – $7

If you’re at all involved in the DIY pop-punk scene at this point in history, there’s no way I even need to tell you about this show–you’ve already marked your calendar. But for those of you who are still coming around to the charms of jangly guitars, sugary hooks, and plenty of punk rock piss n’ vinegar, let me go ahead and enlighten you. Radiator Hospital are probably the most beloved band in this entire scene right now, and one listen to their 2014 LP Torch Song is enough to explain exactly why. Singer-guitarist Sam Cook-Parrott has an incredible knack for amazing choruses and memorable tunes, and the rough n’ ready way his band delivers them is just irresistible. Expect a roomful of adorable kids smiling and dancing throughout their set–and believe me, you’ll be glad if you’re among that number.

Stay In is also on this bill, and a lot of local kids who normally attend house shows will most certainly be excited about their set as well. Their female-fronted power-trio version of the jangly emo/pop-punk sound has some seriously heavy rhythmic backbone due to the fact that the band’s bassist and drummer hail from local hardcore band Caust. The combination of super-sweet vocal melodies and crunchy rhythms makes me think of 90s post-hardcore bands like Hum and Far, but there are definitely tinges of indie-pop in there as well. Stay In has a broad appeal, is what I’m trying to say, and chances are if you typically like music, you’ll dig them. Smoke Break opens up with some awesome Jawbreaker-ish tunes from members of Sundials, Springtime, and Hold Tight, and the show only gets better from there. End your weekend on a high note!

Monday, October 19, 6 PM
Being As An Ocean, Comrades, Birthright, Set For Tomorrow @ The Broadberry – $10 in advance/$12 at the door (order tickets HERE)

I admit it–when I first heard Being As An Ocean a few years ago, around the time of their first LP, Dear G*d, I thought they were pretty overwrought. However, I love the sort of emo that derives its inspiration from hardcore rather than pop-punk as much or more than most, and between repeated listens on my part and continued improvement on their part, Being As An Ocean eventually won me over. Now, not long after releasing their self-titled third LP, they’re coming to Richmond, and I for one can’t wait. The way this band combines melodic guitar riffs with a relatively small amount of distortion with passionately screamed vocals just evokes all kinds of emotions, and I’m sure a lot of kids will be feeling all the feels when these guys hit the Broadberry stage Monday night.

RVA nomads Comrades will also be making one of their all-too-rare local appearances, and considering how hard it is to get these guys to come downtown and play a club instead of randomly crashing a West End living room full of sweaty kids, their set on this show is sure to be a major event. This post-hardcore band spends so much of its time on the road, it can be tough to catch them locally at all–don’t miss this rare opportunity. Maryland’s Birthright are also on the bill, and while I’m sorta sad they aren’t the 90s vegan straight-edge band from Indiana, I console myself with the fact that they are if anything quite a bit better than that band ever was (I’m not selling my copy of that 7 inch, though, so don’t ask). DC crew Set For Tomorrow starts things off–unless some other locals get added to the bill last-minute, but if that happens, I’ll be just as surprised as you will be. So let’s stick with what we know–it’s more than enough to guarantee a good time.

Tuesday, October 20, 5 PM
Caspian (Photo by Showbams), Circle Takes The Square @ The Camel – $14 (order tickets HERE)

The worlds of post-rock and post-hardcore have been colliding a lot in recent years, I’ve noticed; the tour touching down at The Camel next Tuesday night calls attention to that fact in a dramatic and undoubtedly enjoyable fashion. Caspian are an instrumental band from Massachusetts who’ve expanded from a four-piece to a six-piece (featuring four guitars) over the course of their decade-plus as a band. Taking cues from Mogwai there, no doubt. Musically, these guys have a more symphonic vibe than a lot of the heavy-guitar post-rock groups one might think of when considering that term; rather than building up to giant walls of noise, the tunes that make up their fourth LP, Dust & Disquiet (released last month by Triple Crown Records), tend towards an elegaic vibe, sweetened by strategically placed string-section interludes. Perhaps this is due to the fact that Dust & Disquiet is the first album the band has released since the death of original bassist Chris Friedrich in 2013, but regardless of the reason, this band is sure to make you feel some feelings during their set.

Circle Takes The Square bring the post-hardcore side of the equation to this show in dramatic fashion. The trio’s heavy midtempo sound is said to have influenced the modern screamo scene in a big way, and one listen to their groundbreaking 2004 debut, As The Roots Undo, will make clear exactly why that is. The fact that the band took over eight years to release follow-up Decompositions: Volume Number One probably means we’ll be waiting ’til 2021 or so for volume two, but in the meantime fans should definitely head out to the Camel on Tuesday night to bask in the rage and noise this band is sure to churn out. Your guess is as good as mine as to whether there will be opening bands on this show, but honestly, you could do a lot worse than seeing a couple of great bands do sick sets, then getting to head home at a reasonable hour, right? I know, I know, I sound a million years old. Whatever, you whippersnappers. Get off my lawn… and go to this show!


Should I be posting about your show? Make sure I know it’s happening–email me: [email protected]

Marilyn Drew Necci

Marilyn Drew Necci

GayRVA editor-in-chief, RVA Magazine editor for print and web. Anxiety expert, proud trans woman, happily married.

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