I am not a nostalgic fella and I tend to have a private needle that clicks between "ignorant indifference" and "seething distrust" when it comes to all of the hallmarks and anniversaries that we are collectively reminded to celebrate. However, in deference to my readers, of whom I am genuinely fond, and for the sake of posterity, I would like to note that this column marks the one-year anniversary of my time writing the Setlist. I would like to extend my humble and sincere thanks to all of you who enjoy the Journal, as well as the scribblings of a lone weirdo writing a weekly manifesto about the nightlife in a remote and beautiful corner of the world. I have had a great 360 or so degrees doing this gig and I look forward to sharing more music with you all in further bright revolutions around the sun and with the moon in tow.
Have a beautiful week.
Memphis, Tennessee's punk garage wildlings Ex-Cult brings the psychedelic circle-pit sturm und drang to The Miniplex tonight at 8:30 p.m. ($7). In tow for the fun is Oakland's punk act Manback as well as local garage punk act Wet Spot.
There's a mixed-bag but mostly folky affair happening at The Outer Space tonight at 7 p.m. Cinder Well plays a doomy sort of string music and will be supported by Humboldt's own singer/songwriters Hollan, Big Dumb Swede and electro act Knot They're ($6).
Also at 7 p.m. in the beautiful environs adjacent to Elephant Rock, it's the third Friday of the month blues jam at the Westhaven Center for the Arts. Let Jim Lahman, Ron Perry, Bill Moehnke and the always excellent bassist Dale Cash walk you through a century of blues music ($5-$10 sliding scale).
It's the eighth annual presentation of the live interpretive soundtrack of Akira Kurosawa's Dreams at The Sanctuary this evening at 7 p.m. One of the master's last films will be shown with eight different bands interpreting the sounds for the eight principle vignettes for a show which is guaranteed to be worth a gander. Featured groups include Die Geister Beschwören, The Tweeners, Medicine Baul, SamVega and mister moonbeam. Tickets are $12 or $10 advance and worth every penny, while having to remove one's shoes for the venue is a personal price weighed by the general public.
Later at The Alibi, Opossum Sun Trail interprets the songs of Bakersfield's own Merle Haggard at 11 p.m. and $3 buys entry into the live songbook of a troubled country troubadour.
Down the rabbit hole you are invited to go at the Siren's Song tonight at 8 p.m. when a local bass-heavy electronic cadre takes the stage. Come join SnackieMFchan, DrinkingMoonlight, Badam and more with visual effects by VJWEEZYPAIN for a night of pure imagination. As of press time I have no idea what this show costs but I would bet the ticket is worth the value of the ride.
It's really spooky out tonight. And by spooky I mean extinct. Ghoulishly dead on the scene. So instead of a show please allow me to suggest a couple of seasonally appropriate movies that tend to get overlooked but are actually quite worth your time. James Whale is perhaps best known as the openly gay director of the original Frankenstein film who tragically drowned himself in his own pool at the age of 67. However, he also made a wild gem with Boris Karloff and Charles Laughton in 1932 called The Old Dark House about an accidental evening spent in — well, where do you think? The atmosphere in this one is just fantastic and unparalleled.
If you want something thrilling and perfectly creepy, I must recommend The Exorcist III: Legion. Greatness often skips a generation and this sequel of a sequel is no exception. Keep an eye out for the most horrifying decapitation shocker ever set to 35 millimeters.
Nationally touring funk band Kung Fu plays Humbrews tonight at 9 p.m. Known for a sound that combines the mid 1970s aesthetics of jazz fusion with modern EDM, this group is generally feted on the jam circuit for its tight grooves and spontaneous shows. Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the door tonight so it isn't too steep of a price to find out what it's all about on the dance floor.
Cirque Mechanics is a traveling troupe of steampunk-ish circus acrobats who mix music, mechanical animals and daring aerial acts in a stunning show of modern performance art. The troupe will be performing its 42FT-Menagerie of Mechanical Marvels show at the Arkley Center for the Performing Arts tonight at 7 p.m. for your viewing pleasure ($49, $29 children, $15 students).
Full show listings in the Journal's Music and More grid, the Calendar and online. Bands and promoters, send your gig info, preferably with a high-res photo or two, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Collin Yeo is celebrating the beatification of Saint Oscar Romero, a man who faced fascist death squads with entreaties to peace, dignity and a cessation of government-ordered violence. He would like us all to be more like that. He lives in Arcata.