Plastic Crimewave Syndicate

Plastic Crimewave Syndicate

Hidden gems of the Jazz Fest

Johnson’s festival picks plus the the rest of the best gigs this week.

If you really wanted to witness the progressive spirit of jazz, you already missed that festival — Suoni per il Popolo ended last week. The other “jazz” fest started last night but really kicks into their first gear tonight. You guessed it: the programming sucks my dad’s balls (which is no compliment by the way, as his balls have seen better days over his 93 years of complaining on this mortal coil). For most of you who speed-read and skim through this column on the reg, there will be little to offer you but I’ve checked the entire schedule and there are definitely some gems hiding amid the pedestrian clapcrap. In fact, one gig that is hosted by the Jazz Fest almost made my much coveted big pick of the week — almost. Also happy Canada/Moving Day to you and yours!

Thursday: The big pick of the week is a no-brainer. Hopefully, with most of you kids doing the electric boogaloo under anything calling itself psych, this show will sell out l’Esco. With a ton of bands just disguising their indie rock with a “psych” veneer, it’s a treat to hear a band that is psych AF. That band would be Chicagoans Plastic Crimewave Syndicate, who will peel back your scalp with their purple electricity with help from Kaleidoscope Horse, en Fer and Arlen from Wolf Parade’s new psych/kraut jammer Anunnaki opening up the night. This better be packed!!!! 4461 St-Denis. 9 p.m., $12

If the Plastic Crimewave Syndicate show sells out, have no fear. You can always point yer swank Cuban heels in the direction of la Vitrola to check out Talleen, Void Republic and the power punk of the Bombs. 4602 St-Laurent, 9 p.m., $10

Here’s a great free gig courtesy of the Jazz Fest: Black Legarry at M2. If you haven’t checked out this insane proggy pop of the double bass trio you should really do yourself and save yourself some duckets and get down for this. Bonus points for getting Co/ntry’s chef to the stars Beaver Sheppard adding some spoken word power. 59 Ste-Catherine E., 7 p.m., free

Friday: For those of you who are skimming through this just looking for something heavy before celebrating your nationalism (long weekend!!!), you can stop right here as the U.K.’s Conan will beat down the doors of the Turbo Haüs with Witchkiss and Aiauasca. 2040 St-Denis, 8 p.m., $21.14

Did you miss Black Legarry’s free gigger last night? No problemo, Daddyo. They are playing M2 again tonight. 59 Ste-Catherine E., 7 p.m., free

Saturday: It will be a homecoming of sorts for those of you who remember all of the Turbo Haüses when local riffmeisters Barnburner keep the reunion train running at Turbo Haüs (natch) with Diner Drugs and more. This has sold out online but a limited amount of tickets will be released at the door. These tix will go super fast so good luck. 2040 St-Denis, 7 p.m., $15

If you need the riffs but didn’t get in to see Barn Burner, you should definitely drag yer riff-depleted mug to a specially located punk rock playhouse to check out Toronto’s Plasticheads — featuring ex-members of killer bands Career Suicide and Brutal Knights — with Hood Rats featuring a brand new line up, Mexico’s Charged SS and Force Majeure. Ask a Punk for the Location, 7 p.m., $10

Sunday: True, the Plastic Crimewave Syndicate scooped my big pick of the week but a dangerously close second is this utterly killer gig happening at the Jazz Fest: The almighty metal force known to us mere mortals as Voivod are doing a gig at Club Soda with a full brass section. I am not kidding, by the way. Opening will be Rene Lussier and Robbie Kuster. All thanks and praise be bestowed upon Voivod. 1225 St-Laurent, 9 p.m.,  $35.25

Monday: The Jazz Fest scores yet again with a Suuns show on the Loto Québec stage (at the festival’s new Verdun site), and best of all it’s free!!! Freak out the squares fellas, and grab that money!!! Wellington and Galt, 9 p.m., free

Another definite feather in the Jazz Fest cap would be one of the last truly great R&B men, Lee Fields and his Expressions, at Club Soda. If you’re sick of the plastic soul going around over the past couple of decades, rest assured: Mr. Field’s is the real deal. 1225 St-Laurent, 9 p.m.,  $42.25

Current Obsession: Torche, Admission