Soundchecks: MC Chris, B-Side, Never Better, Noisy Boys, Mercury Rising

Live music to catch this week

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NERDCORE | MC Chris
Wed. Nov. 20
7 p.m.
$15/adv, $20/dos
Tin Roof

MC Chris doesn't want you to think of his music as nerdcore hip-hop. Instead, it's just MC Chris music. With his high-pitched voice and a style that combines geek and gangster, Chris has made his blend of comedy and hip-hop an artistic expression. Starting out in the early 2000s, Chris wore two hats in the entertainment industry: Rapper and writer for Adult Swim. Taking aliases such as MC Pee Pants and Young Carl in Aqua Teen Hunger Force helped Chris find a distinct voice in the music industry. MC Chris has a wide variety of albums from his 2001 debut, Life's a Bitch and I'm Her Pimp to his popular 2008 album, MC Chris is Dead. This has allowed him to create an esoteric and playful impression filled with innocence. His track "Fett's Vette," accumulated over 3 million streams on Spotify, and is Chris' personal homage to being fly and unabashedly cool. His fruitful instrumentals and his polarizing, rhythmic lyricism can be found on any given song throughout his extensive discography. This equation led to a career full of lighthearted antics and honest emotions for MC Chris. —Matt Keady WEDNESDAY


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EXPERIMENTAL R&B | B-Side
w/ Kid Trails, Persona La Ave
Fri. Nov. 22
9 p.m.
$5
The Royal American

The man behind B-Side has a long history of musical reinvention in this town. The enigmatic moniker actually belongs to musician Brian Robert Hannon, who has also been known to go simply by Brian Robert in the years since his band, Company, closed for business. As part of this week's triple-bill concert at the Royal American, Hannon is preparing to offer yet another side of himself. "I am super excited and nervous about this show because I am debuting new material from my latest project," Hannon says. "I came up playing in the indie-punk scene with my band, Company, then later moved onto folk-country with my solo material, but B-Side is my current venture into hip-hop and R&B, and I am way out of my comfort zone." Hannon goes on to say that this particular gig is extra special for him because it will be an evening among friends. "It will be me performing some new songs, then Kid Trails, who is in the band Toro y Moi and is wonderful, then my homeboys Persona La Ave. They are the best dudes ever and Dylan [Dawkins] was 100 percent instrumental in helping me create this new project." —Kevin Wilson FRIDAY

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CHARLESTON EMO | Never Better
w/ Mourning Dove, Scene Jesus
Sat. Nov. 23
8:30 p.m.
$7
Tin Roof

D.J. Edwards has been careful with his latest project, Never Better. Since releasing the band's first single on a joint EP with Short Division, Edwards has slowly filtered out tracks, like the philosophical and dramatic "Light it Up." And, while the band prepares for their first full release in 2020, the multi-instrumentalist is cautiously attempting to drop music that will invite and challenge his audience. "I've tried to make sure that people hear songs that most people will love," Edwards explains. "Then I've also tried to make sure people have heard songs that are a lot heavier that I love, that I'm not sure everyone will like, as much." The studio stuff is cool, according to Edwards, but performing is where the band shines. "[Audiences] should expect a lot of passion, they should expect the gong, and they should expect to like songs that they would have never thought they'd liked before," he says. Never Better shows are each based on a seasonal theme and that's reflected in the lineup that Edwards curated for the upcoming show. "This is my fall show and I really wanted to get acts to play with me that represent fall," he says. Greenville-based psychedelic folk singer Mourning Dove and local trap artist Scene Jesus will feel the autumn vibe with Never Better this time around. —Heath Ellison SATURDAY

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RAP-ROCK | Noisy Boys
w/ Mason Jar Muzik, the Hooplas, Hollo Tip, Gracie Boy
Sat. Nov. 23
6 p.m.
$20
Cheetah Charleston

Throughout the nine songs on their self-titled 2019 LP, Noisy Boys do pretty much everything they can to earn their name. Outlandish groove jams? "Funk Junk" checks that box. Porn rap akin to 2 Live Crew? Take "Cougar Town" home tonight. Nu-metal yelps and chugging guitar licks? "#Forthenoise" is for the boys. Sure, it's easy to hear the term "rap-rock" and assume that Noisy Boys are gunning for a bygone sound from the mid-'90s. For the most part, that couldn't be further from the truth. Guitarist Josh Davidson actually jams on the acoustic more than he does on an overdriven electric, often opting for soul and funk riffs. The band's emcee, Learical, raps like a student of the craft. "So stand with us/ if you've had enough/ feet to the ground/ straight to the clutch/ ready to push when it comes to shove/ 'cus no one's above peace and love," he raps on album opener "Van Hail'em." The duo prioritizes riffs and attitude, with a few surprises here and there, like some violin accents on "Rude & Groovy" or the strummy guitar licks on "Frenemies." Rap-rock is a quick and easy description of Noisy Boys, but it's not always the whole story. —Heath Ellison SATURDAY

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QUEEN COVERS | Mercury Rising
Sun. Nov. 24
5 p.m.
Free
Tabbuli

Queen is a British rock band that quickly became a household name in the 1970s. Since then, their music has been continuously consumed and celebrated, and Tabbuli is joining in on the fun. "A loyal patron and friend, Jed Drew, and I noticed, during one of our Taboo Tuesday Drag Nights, the crowd's [positive] response when one of the performers did 'Bohemian Rhapsody,'" says J. Michael Walker, the creative director behind the event. Freddie Mercury, Queen's lead singer, was known for his ability to entertain multitudes with his unique stage presence and impeccable vocal talent, and fans are still being entertained today. But, entertainment isn't the only upside to this night. "We were looking for a local charity that would benefit from this event, and Palmetto Community is very dear to our performers and staff," says Walker. "We hoped that the life and legacy of Freddie Mercury would have an impact on HIV/AIDS education and testing." Mercury defied the expectations that surrounded him in a way that inspired, and still inspires, everyone he entertained. Not only was he a rock icon, he was also an activist for AIDS research and awareness. Just months after his death in 1991, the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert at Wembley Stadium raised millions for AIDS research, and his memory is still alive. On Sunday, there will be queens singing and dancing to Queen's timeless hits, as well as hookah, food, and drinks per usual. It's going to be an event to remember, just like the icon it's commemorating. —Abrie Richison SUNDAY

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