Power through the holidaze

The best metal, punk, stoner and experimental shows to trip balls to on Christmas week.

Admittedly the pickins get a bit slim as Santa’s birthday drags us into the holidaze but it’s these desperate times when we need gigs more than ever. Lifting goblets of spiked egg nog with coworkers we can barely stand or X mas shopping for nieces and nephews that will remain nameless (until a desperate phone call to your parents to find out what their names are, and whether Underoos are age appropriate or just plain weird — it’s enough to drive ya batty, I tells ya. Thankfully there are some gigs that will provide the perfect escape hatches when your family starts to drive you to the brink.

Thursday: Right out of the gate is the big gig of the week: the atmospheric blackened metal of Portland’s Falls of Rauros will have you nodding out with the looping drone soundscapes of local head thisquietarmy with Baslalte at Casa. This will indeed be the tits. 4873 St-Laurent, 9 p.m., $10

Friday: The Cat Sabbath night at Katacombes returns for a second run. Same deal as last year: metal-themed karaoke and DJ Roo Dawg slaying on the wheels of steel. Although the event is free, there will be donation stations set up, with the money going towards cat adoption services. Hmm. Hope cats and Roo Dawg can get along for the night. 1635 St-Laurent, 8 p.m., free

Local weed smoking legends Grim Skunk are keeping it real and doing a set at the hippest venue in town — l’Escogriffe — and best of all, I’ll be spinning the tunes. I’ll have to bring down my bong for this one, as it would only be right. 4461 St-Denis, 9 p.m., SOLD OUT (but contact peter@indica.mu in advance for a chance to get tickets)

Saturday: Once again Norman Rawocki’s Rad Non Xmas Show returns to Casa with 12 acts in tow (which makes the small room of Casa almost sold out). No one knows rad more than Norman Rawocki, so don’t sleep on this. 4873 St-Laurent, 9 p.m, $10

For those of you just looking for a straight-up metal night, you could do a lot worse than All That Remains, the Agonist and Throw the Fight at l’Astral. 305 Ste-Catherine W., 8 p.m., $26.75-$31.75

Tuesday: Although they are a day late why not spend your boxing day tripping balls at Casa for the return of the Merry Krautmas and Bad Psych New Year show at Casa with Cheasypop/Booster Fawn, Kazuki Koga, Les Orcs de Cristal, an electronic set from Black Givre, Yannick Chayer/Jonathan Lachance, Sin Ori/Hug Signori/Hazy Montagnes Mystique and DJ’s Grey 2b2 and Anette Zenith – Me Float keeping the room spinning. 4873 St-Laurent, 9 p.m., price unlisted

Wednesday: For those of you who crave some blistering hardcore over the holidaze, head down to Casa and catch D.C’s Red Death, the Reagan-era hardcore of Toronto’s Mil=Spec, Division of Mind, Prowl and Front Commun. Record collector might also note that Mil=Spec’s toonz would fit perfectly on the classic ’80s comp This Is Boston Not L.A., but I wouldn’t know anything about that, as record collectors are nerds. 4873 St-Laurent, 8 p.m., $10

Current Obsession: Various Artists, This Is Boston Not L.A.