MMS Concert Calendarstravaganza

Where to begin? Where to begin? This week is more jam-packed with live musical goodness than a clown car full of politicians. Our calendarstravaganza starts tomorrow with a pair of self-identified queer musicians lighting up The Black Cat with their unique gifts. I'm not sure how to best describe Emily Wells. Is she neoclassical? Experimental? Electro-pop? All of the above? What I do know is that she made one of last year's most beautiful and haunting videos in "Don't Use Me Up". It's a visceral reflection on beauty and fragility in our youth and beauty-obsessed culture.

Opening tomorrow night's show is local singer-songwriter Be Steadwell. She shares with Emily an inscrutability and defiance of easy categorization. Be has a voice of uncommon beauty, a knack with sampling to create lush musical textures that blend pop, soul, and chamber folk. Her video for "done" is stark and stunning.

You might remember Dirty Bourbon River Show from last week's #WednesdayIsForLovers feature. They play this Thursday at The Hamilton. This video, and its charmingly nihilistic opening animation, led me to the realization that this group not only marches to the beat of its own drummer, but also that they have their own Second Line.

I listen to Sallie Ford sing and think this is her world, and that she graciously allows us to share it with her. Hers is a voice of astonishing grace and power, to borrow a phrase from Tolkien, "beautiful and terrible as the Morning and the Night". She was featured with her latest video in one of last month's #WednesdayIsForLovers preview editions. Check out the video for "Coulda Been", which I thought was the standout track from her 2014 album Slap Back. She'll be playing DC9 Friday night with Molly Burch.

Wrapping up the week's concerts are Scottish prog rockers Biffy Clyro. Frontman Simon Neil  and twin bandmates James and Ben Johnston were childhood friends, and they've variously attributed their name to a variety of tall tales that include the spy who inspired James Bond and the Scotsman who was the improbable first man in space. These guys play incendiary live shows, but they're unafraid to look inward and do battle with their dragons. Check out their video for "Re-arrange", and catch them at the 9:30 Club next Saturday.