Live Music: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony; Strangled Darlings; Highbeams; Lunacy

Great live music to check out this week

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ROCK | Highbeams
w/ Volcanoes in the Kitchen
Fri. Dec. 5
6 p.m.
Free
Palmetto Brewing Co.

Highbeams began as two brothers, guitarist Ian Pendlington and percussionist Adam Pendlington, wanting to create honest music. They eventually added bassist Stephen Quinn and have been touring the East Coast ever since. The band was named after the message that the brothers wanted to get through to their audience. “Out of all the things that come in pairs, Highbeams was attractive because they cut through the darkness,” says Quinn. “That’s the idea. From the beginning, [Ian and Adam] wanted to send a positive message to listeners with some authentic, feel-good music.” The trio describe themselves as adventure rock because of their love of exploring the unknown, and that definitely comes through in their songs. “The sound has come a long way for us and has continued to mature as we become more serious about this lifestyle,” says Quinn. “We never really tried to make a certain style of music, though. What you hear is just what comes out of us as a trio.” The threesome foresees bright days ahead. Quinn adds, “The future for us is wide open. We plan to continue releasing music at as fast a rate as possible and show it to as many people who can hear us. We plan on getting loud.” —J. Chapa FRIDAY

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DOOM POP | Strangled Darlings
Sat. Dec. 6
10 p.m.
Free
The Mill

Portland, Ore.’s Strangled Darlings take bits and pieces from all over the musical spectrum to create a type of Americana they like to call graveyard stomp. “The childhood influences of bands like Tom Waits, the Beastie Boys, and The Pogues led to some of the more dissonant tones,” says cellist Jess Anderly. “But the other source for the sound of the band is the economy and the state of indie music.” Along with mandolin player, George Veech, Anderly creates gloomy pop composed primarily of minor keys that still make you want to dance off the melancholy. “We have been focusing the sound of the band to fit a niche market,” says Anderly. “The music won’t necessarily be mainstream, but there are a bunch of little buried treasures in the tunes that hopefully will appeal to certain listeners.” Strangled Darlings are set to officially release their latest effort Boom Stomp King in March but have been sneaking a few pre-release copies to fans at their latest live shows. When the duo isn’t busy during their grueling tour schedule, they are writing nonstop. “You’d be surprised how much down time you have even when touring full time. Write a lot of half-finished songs and eventually the idea starts to focus,” says Anderly. “Usually, something emotional triggers the floating idea to precipitate or crystallize. Say a cop shoots another unarmed teenager, that kind of thing.” —J. Chapa SATURDAY

MITCH SCOBIE, CAROLINA NIGHTLIFE
  • Mitch Scobie, Carolina Nightlife

ELECTRONIC | Lunacy
w/ DJ United, DJ Memorii, The Missing Linkz Dancers
Sat. Dec. 6
After Dark
$3
Voodoo Tiki Bar and Lounge

For some people, a full moon is a warning. Should you venture out, there lies the possibility of encountering erratic behavior, strange happenings, and creatures that howl. But for Voodoo Tiki Bar and Lounge, this astronomical wonder isn’t the time for staying in and watching Teen Wolf; it’s time for Lunacy. For several years now, the Avondale bar has celebrated the craziness by inviting it to their full-moon Lunacy party complete with dancing and things that glow in the dark. DJ United and DJ Memorii will spin the tunes this year while breakdancing ensues with Tha Missing Linkz Dancers. Trevor and Friends will turn the night up a notch by decorating the willing with body paint, and costumes that glow are encouraged. The festivities start as soon as the sun goes down. —Kelly Rae Smith SATURDAY

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SMOOTH R&B | Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
w/ Gillie Da Kid
Sun. Dec. 7
9 p.m.
$26/adv., $28/door
Music Farm

Bone Thugs are the apotheosis of ’90s hip-hop trends — fast “chopper” flows, violent, bravado-drenched imagery, and low-riding R&B rhythms sprinkled with unabashed pop hooks. They’re the more radio-friendly kin of N.W.A. — and not just because they broke on Eazy-E’s Ruthless Records label. They sold over nine million copies of their next two albums, 1995’s E. 1999 Eternal and 1997’s seminal double-disc The Art of War. Their nimble tongues, sweet hooks, and undeniable grooves made them irresistible. But with success came contentious label relations, particularly for Bizzy Bone who’d sue Sony and later be kicked from the group. The aughts were dotted with rancor, arrest, and mediocre solo (or trio) releases, as well as frequent reunion rumors. The quintet finally reunited for 2010’s somewhat disappointing Uni5: The World’s Enemy. They followed with last year’s surprisingly good The Art of War: World War III, though Krayzie and Wish Bone complained of being frozen out. This minor return to form prompted a Wu Tang-like bid: Bone Thugs are allegedly recording a “final” double-album, E. 1999 Legends. They intend to sell the single existing copy for $1 million. Though ever a maddeningly inconsistent act, they never lack for excitement, and when they’re on, they’re half Sam Cooke, half N.W.A. — as badass smooth as it gets. —Chris Parker SUNDAY


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