Goings On – week of Oct. 23 2014

The homecoming shows get crazy during the holidays as Calgary expats attempt to charm their parents into lending them more money over Christmas dinner. That’s months away from now but we’ve already got a taste of it this weekend as two expats return home and play some shows. Former Lethbridge dude Joel Butler will return to Calgary with his garage pop supergroup Nervous Talk who’ll headline a stacked bill at The Palomino on Friday October 24 also featuring Victoria’s excellent Line Traps and local punk brats Racket.

Line Traps features former Calgarian Tiemen Kuipers also of the excellent skate-punk outfit Sheglank’d Shoulders. Kuipers can’t return to town without resurrecting the shred with that band so they’ve also booked a show at Tubby Dog on Friday night. They’ll be joined by local newbies Paralyzed.

Metal is already an inherently hilarious genre but Children of Bodom are easily one of its funnier (and more addictive) bands. For over 20 years the Finnish act has been making melodic death metal that’s at once jarringly aggressive and sweetly melodic with plenty of faux-orchestral synth stabs punctuating the intense guitar parts. It’s fast in-your-face and evil and it occasionally sounds like a collaboration with a pony-tailed synth salesman. Come for the riffs and stay for the laughs when Children of Bodom hit the Republik on Saturday October 25.

For more musical hilarity the Sled Island Rock Lotto is back for its fourth edition. The event sees 25 local musicians (full disclosure: myself included) meet for breakfast draw names from a hat and split off into brand new bands. The acts spend the day writing new songs and then on Saturday night they debut new material onstage at The Palomino. Even though it’s for a good cause (Sled Island needs our money) it’s hard to know what sort of masochistic audience would want to put themselves through sets from these bands.

But while those willing to watch barely practised bands for charity are certainly suckers they’re far from Supersuckers. That designation belongs to the Tucson Arizona group whose blend of greasy rock ’n’ roll and crusty country has clearly struck a chord with Calgarians over the last two-and-a-half decades. After all the Supersuckers will perform for two nights at Dickens Pub on Saturday October 25 and Sunday October 26.

Victoria psych duo The Backhomes are heading well back home after completing a lengthy cross-Canada tour. The trek includes a stop at Local 510 on October 26 where they’ll perform alongside Pink Licorice and Burnt Shrines.

Living proof of indie rock’s mid-life crisis radio-friendly rockists The Black Keys will bring their “authentic” (an adjective for which there aren’t enough air quotes on Earth) music back to the Saddledome on Monday October 27. It’s blues rock for people whose biggest problem will likely be a killer case of the Mondays.