With two legit classics under his belt -- in the form of 1982's Marshall Crenshaw and 1983's Field Day -- and a host of pop nuggets lurking in the rest of his catalog, Marshall Crenshaw is one of the most accomplished singer-songwriters around, even if his commercial success never matched his artistic triumphs. In his prime, Crenshaw displayed an unrivaled ability to evoke vintage sources such as the Beatles and Buddy Holly without sounding the slightest bit retro. And those who caught Crenshaw's Memphis gig last year attest that his gifts remain undiminished. Crenshaw will be back at the Hi-Tone Café on Saturday, September 15th.
But if you're looking for something a bit more raucous on Saturday night, then you might want to head to downtown's newest music venue, The Lounge at Gibson Guitar Plant, for a local double-bill that promises to be plenty rousing: Eighty-Katie, riding the wave of a fine new debut album, and the surging Subteens, coming off a great performance at the Memphis Music and Heritage Festival a couple weeks ago. -- Chris Herrington
On to the hearsay front. Not so long ago the following monologue was delivered by an employee at a popular downtown beer joint: "So, anyway, this girl was totally offended. The band had played some song that offended her and she didn't just want her money back, she wanted an apology. She wanted me to apologize to her. So I just looked at her and told her, 'Ma'am, you do know that you came to see a band called Anal Cunt.'" David Mamet, eat your heart out. Now I've got no idea what A.C. sounds like, and though I'm no Puritan, the chances are mighty I'll not be investigating the matter anytime soon. But I know there are plenty of doped-up meathead thrill-seekers out there primed to take on anything that appears even remotely transgressive. Interested parties may catch Anal Cunt at the Map Room on Thursday, September 13th.
If that doesn't sound like your kind of thing there are a number of other fine choices this week. Memphis' own rock legend, Alex Chilton, of Big Star and Box Tops fame, will be at the Young Avenue Deli on Friday, September 14th, with the fab 45s, whose song "King of Mexico" ranks among the most insidiously catchy numbers ever recorded. Saturday, September 15th, brings the good Reverend Horton Heat's campy brand of retro rocket juice to the Deli, with local heroes Lucero in tow. There will be plenty of punked-up gender-bending when the Demolition Doll Rods hit the Hi-Tone Café on Wednesday, September 19th. But for my money there is really only one show in town this week: Greg Hisky's Dixie Whisky Boys do their 10th annual tribute to Hank Williams Sr. at the P&H Cafe on Friday, September 14th. Like the tasty beverage that gives Hisky's group its name, this event just gets better with age. -- Chris Davis