The Hold Steady have single-handedly turned “bar band” into a term of endearment. Blame it on frontman Craig Finn, whose half-sung, near-Joycean rants about drugs and alcohol and teenagers and Minneapolis and drugs are shot through with so much wit and wisdom they manage to turn bar chatter into a kind of high art. Anyway, without Finn—or with a lead singer who actually sung—the Brooklyn quintet would be little more than arena rock nostalgists churning out scads of decidedly uncool rock clichés (guitar solos, piano interludes) for middle-aged audiences. In other words, they’d be a bar band in the old sense. With Finn, though, all those dad-rock histrionics go down real easy.
The nation’s favorite bar band is set to play Terminal 5 on Nov. 6 and 7. Along with tunes from the band’s latest record, Stay Positive, The Hold Steady will bring along southern rockers Drive By Truckers. [Both shows on sale: Friday, Aug. 22 at noon]
New wavers TV on the Radio play the Brooklyn Masonic Temple (of all places) on Oct. 14 and 15—a little less then a month after the release of their new album, Dear Science. Both shows are sold out. But no need to pout, kids—a third show has just been scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 16! Bowery Presents loves you. [On sale today at noon]
What’s the last time you saw young girls really rock out (besides your niece’s bat mitzvah a few years back)? Look no further then the Music Hall of Williamsburg this weekend. On Saturday, the venue plays host to the Willie Mae Rock Camp For Girls—a nonprofit organization that shoves guitars, drum sticks and mics into the hands of girls between the ages of 8 and 18, teaches them how to play, and helps them write their own songs. Good stuff, right? This weekend’s showcase will feature each of the young bands formed during the camp’s second session earlier this month. Here’s to the next Kim Gordon. [On sale now]
And finally, if you missed the handful of Pool Parties at McCarren Park this summer—and really, what else did you have to do?—here’s your last chance. You La Tengo (a.k.a. the only band we know from Hobokon) and Ebony Bones play the pool on Sunday at 2 p.m. [More information here]
And speaking of which … New York’s own Fringe Festival also wraps up this Sunday. But there’s still lots of good (and appropriately disturbing) theater left to drag you indoors. The Alice Complex describes a desperate confrontation between a feminist professor and her vindictive student; Walls is a Kafka-esque tale about a couple who wakes one day to find their house neatly split by an impassable wall; while Zombie profiles a pedophile with a penchant for nicknaming his boy victims (Bunny Gloves, Squirrel). Leave the kids with the sitter. [See here for times and locations]