It’s pretty hard to believe the next edition of Boston Calling is only a few weeks away now! Why not get into the concert-going spirit by a checking out a few shows around the city before hitting up the Harvard Athletic Complex later this month? As always our team at Sound of Boston is here to save you from those dreaded, endless concert listings by picking out a handful of our favorites for the month of May! From rising local bands like Kal Marks, Birthing Hips, and Ozlo to national touring artists such as Wavves, Andy Shauf, or rapper Oddisee, we’ve got you covered.
Monday, May 8th 2017
Screaming Females at ONCE Ballroom -Selected by Matt M.
Screaming Females kind of sound like if Edith Piaf started a fuzz-filled garage punk band from suburban New Jersey. Lead singer/guitarist Marissa Paternoster may come off as incredibly shy and reserved in interviews, but the second she hits the stage she unleashes a breathtaking fury of blistering solos and haunting, wailing vocal lines. This tightly-knit trio continues to have some of the best onstage chemistry in the business. Their raw intensity injects new life into their growing catalogue of recorded material, making their live performances can’t-miss events for punk/indie rock fans. They last released Rose Mountain in 2015, but have promised to preview songs off of their untitled upcoming full-length throughout this tour. Show up early to check out local up-and-coming indie math rock band Ozlo!
Monday, May 15th, 2017
Kal Marks, Gnarwhal and more at Charlie’s Kitchen -Selected by Kevin
Kal Marks performs with such ferocious intensity that it’s easy to see why they have become the favorites of so many basement-dwelling Allston show-goers. The trio uses crushing distorted guitars to accent a unique vocal delivery with insightful (and occasionally nihilistic) lyrics about humanity. Fresh off a tour supporting Pile, Gnarwhal will be as tight as ever as they bring their virtuosic brand of frenetic energy and dizzying polyrhythms. The always unpredictable Birthing Hips combines harsh and angular guitar riffs with vocals that go from whisper quiet to shrieking within a few musical bars. Opener Big Mess puts a bluesy spin on crushingly heavy doom-inspired riffs. If rocking out to heavy and relentless riffs while being surrounded in a sweaty beer swilling horde sounds like your idea of a good time, then Charlie’s Kitchen will be your ideal night out.
Wednesday, May 17th, 2017
Wavves at Brighton Music Hall – Selected by Matt E.
Nathan Williams has proven to be not only the King of the Beach, but the king of beach bum surf punk. His songs feel like waking up after a night of heavy drinking only to realize you’re still drunk; you feel invincible, but are well aware of the pain that’s to come. His ability to craft a catchy melody and solid riff often comes at odds with his lyrics. Trying to count the number of times his songs reference hangovers, headaches, and general malaise will make your head hurt. Don’t let that get you down though, because it certainly doesn’t get Williams down nor does it put a damper on the music. And if you missed 2015’s underrated gem of a collaboration with Dylan Baldi of Cloud Nothings, No Life for Me, be sure to check it out for a perfect blend of both bands’ sound.
Saturday, May 20th, 2017
Andy Shauf at The Sinclair -Selected by Knar
Andy Shauf’s vocals are delicate. Nearly all of the words he sings seem to land softly onto a pillow of synths, or a bed of guitar chords. His latest album explores the characters of a party, but the night tends to go poorly for most of the attendees. Though Shauf will bring these sad stories to The Sinclair, it’s doubtful the show will end as poorly as Alexander’s or Jeremy’s best friend. But, it would be no surprise if Shauf’s beautiful music moves the audience to tears—or at the very least, melancholic rumination.
Tuesday, May 30th, 2017
Oddisee & Good Compny ft. Olivier St. Louis -Selected by Eric
Oddisee is a rapper from Washington D.C. who has excelled in the political/conscious realm of hip-hop music long before it became a common trend. As a seasoned veteran with a remarkably consistent discography, Oddisee has carved out his own lane over the years and continues to thrive with his latest body of work titled The Iceberg. With Boston being one of the last stops of his world tour (alongside Oliver St. Louis) that started back on March 2nd, fans should be in for a treat as Oddisee comes to Brighton Music Hall to deliver one of his standout performances marked by assertive awareness on the mic and a soulful backdrop of live musicality. We will be in attendance on May 30th and Oddisee can be relied upon to end the month on a strong note!