It’s a good time and a bad time to be a music fan. So-called mainstream alternative rock has become as stale and moldy as last year’s bread. What was briefly considered a musically daring genre has turned horribly safe thanks to the onslaught of stinkers like the Toadies, Bush, Silverchair and Alanis Morissette.
As always, the underground is percolating with unexploited, cutting-edge talent.
San Francisco’s Carlos, which plays Mother’s Pub Saturday, is just one of the many bands destined for great things even if the trio never signs that million-dollar deal.
On its second LP, “Amy Armageddon,” Carlos yields well-balanced, infectious rock, pop and noise. It’s brimming with snappy pop hooks, dense, crunchy and fuzzy guitar work and sugarcoated vocals. Strains of Hazel, Superchunk and Flop pop up throughout the release.
The Bay City popsters - drummer Allan Moon, guitarist-vocalist Rich Scramaglia and drummer Doug Lippi - formed in 1991.
Right from the start, the band hit the clubs fighting for recognition in an area overflowing with bands. Thanks in part to daring live shows and a couple of amazing, self-financed releases (including last year’s CD, “Coriander Salamander”), the band gained a foothold in the hometown scene, all the while gaining some notoriety across the land.
This year, the band signed to San Diego independent Headhunter, a label known for its Rocket From The Crypt, Drive Like Jehu and Fluf releases. Headhunter just unleashed Carlos’ “Amy Armageddon,” which was recorded by production wizard Kramer.
Also on the bill are three Spokane bands, the Crudlers, Sacred Dairy and the Monas.
When the Monas, a new three-quarter female rock quartet featuring former Nice World drummer Koz, was struggling to come up with a catchy name, the band enlisted the help of Spokesman-Review writer Paul Turner. So Turner put the word out to his loyal Slice readers and dozens of readers responded.
The effort seemed to be in vain, though, as the band didn’t use any of the readers’ picks.
The Monas is a fine name, however.
Music starts at 9 p.m. The cover is $3 before 9 and $5 after. Bring your ID.
Elsewhere in the night
Fans of local heavy metal monger Solomon Kane will be glad to know the band’s debut CD and tape, “Mask Of Lies,” is now available at local record stores. Or, one could be picked up tonight at the band’s show at Outback Jack’s.
“Mask Of Lies” is an all-out heavy metal rampage. Lots of dual guitar solos, pounding rhythms and angry grunts, growls, snarls and wails. It should please most metal enthusiasts.
Solomon Kane, which definitely has the most hair of any band on the scene, has been plugging away in local clubs for a while now.
Malicious Mischief, which also has a tape out, and Love Stitch open. Music starts at 9:30 p.m. Bring ID.
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