The Weekender

5) The Gaslight Anthem, Matthew Ryan, The Static Jacks at Terminal 5

I am about one anchor tattoo shy of being a Gaslight Anthem groupie. I don’t care that my mom can probably hum the chorus to “45” and that Spin gave their latest album, Handwritten, its Pitchfork-leaning “Worst New Music” distinction. I hiked to 11th Ave for last night’s sandwich set anyway and I highly suggest you do the same tonight (scalp, scalp, scalp!). In essence a hometown show for the Asbury Park-born band, the atmosphere is sure to be mutually adoring and the set a rollicking 80 minutes of everything you came to sing along to. Don’t forget to get there early, if only for The Static Jacks, a collection of younger-than-me-and-youJersey punks whose opening set for The Wombats earlier this year knocked me on my Levi’s-branded butt-stitching.

Doors at 7pm

4) High on Fire, Goatwhore at Music Hall of Williamsburg

It’s practically a fact: Thrash is lame. Look at the last couple metal calendar years and you will see that while bubbling doom-drone and swarming black metal grandiosity have been eagerly adopted by east of the East River flannel-clad Foucaults, thrash has been left mostly to its own blunt-edged devices. The prevailing feeling is that old dudes play thrash for other old dudes to listen to and the cycle becomes self-defeating commentary on the loss of youth and, well, fuck it, lets go chug a PBR and listen to these 15 year-old fetuses rip off Sabbath instead. If you have been following Matt Pike, and his Bay Area thrash cornerstone High on Fire of late, however, then two things are immediately abundantly clear: A. You and I would get along. B. Thrash is still alive and karate kicking. A few months removed from one of my favorite metal albums of the year (in De Vermis Mysteriis), a couple cancelled shows, and a summer-long rehab stint, the Pike 2012 campaign finally rollercoasters its way into Williamsburg on Saturday night, lending crusted credence to my whole “thrash rules” argument in the process. So if you’re looking for an excuse to throw up the Dio horns this weekend (and lets be honest, who isn’t?) then this is your show.

Doors at 7pm

3) Dinosaur Jr., Johnny Marr, Kurt Vile at Terminal 5

If indie had baseball cards, all of these dudes would have their own platinum edition collecting dust and/or semen in some nerd’s mom’s basement’s display case of straight f’n post-rock n’ roll rock n’ roll legends. Now imagine them all on the same bill and ask yourself—a reasonably mature individual and aspiring music blogger, in this case— if it’s overkill to make two male reproduction fluid references in as many sentences. The answer ultimately says a great deal about you as a person, which I suppose means that I’m a virginal guitar dweeb who gets misty eyed at a frantic J. Mascis solo, blames Morrissey for everything, and will still be holding out for a War on Drugs reunion when he is 43. This is admittedly not a glowing reflection but I better get used to it seeing as Saturday night’s Terminal 5 crowd will be like looking into 3,000 identical mirrors.

Doors at 7pm

2) A Place to Bury Strangers, Liturgy, Total Slacker at 285 Kent

Offering the best diversity of loud this weekend, this bill is essentially Donny and Marie Osmond for the crust set: A little bit noise, a little bit metal. Say what you want about Liturgy’s Hunter Hunt-Hendrix (lord knows he’s given his two cents) but the man (or kid) writes triumphant, genre-hop-scotching, dusty-chalkboard-hued black metal for a cultural subset that might otherwise still be listening to The Strokes if it weren’t for a band like A Place To Bury Strangers. Considering this sociological context, in addition to Total Slacker’s recent tragedy and Liturgy’s home-turf comfort zone, and you have the makings of a possibly transcendent show-going experience in a borough that’s hosted something like 350 sets a week for over half a decade. Needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway): Be there.

Doors at 8pm

1) Titus Andronicus, Ceremony at Maxwell’s

If you happened to peruse our inaugural Holiday Show guide in between non-fat eggnog latte shots while huddled in your urban camouflage tent in the post-apocalyptic parking lot of the nearest Best Buy on Black Friday then you already know that my excitement for this one is nearly pornographic. Though the only tickets left are for Sunday night’s Webster Hall offering, Maxwell’s Saturday night set herein represents the idealist’s pick of the litter, funnily enough on the merits Titus Andronicus’s Local Business, an album about the wholesale slaughter of idealism. PATH train service looks like it should be to go for this one, so if you have tickets the only excuse for not being there is if you happened to lend them to your friendly neighborhood music columnist (seriously, GIVE THEM TO ME!)

Doors at 10pm


Honorable Mentions

Near Miss of the Weekend

Talib Kweli at Brooklyn Bowl

Do You Wanna Borrow My Jacket?

Hard Nips at The Gutter

Because You Didn’t Win Powerball

Rock Lottery at Knitting Factory