WAR JACKET AND THE CLAY STATES: War Jacket sounds like a good name for a metal band. Not true in this case. Not at all. War Jacket, with Caleb Chauncey at its core, captures the sweetest, softest folk sound you can possibly imagine. I’d be surprised if these guys ever yelled. War Jacket and The Clay States will be playing with Lauren Michael Sellers at Bottletree. Doors open at 8 p.m, and the show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $7. Call (205) 533-6288 or visit www.thebottletree. com for more information.
ROCKING OUT WITH ART: Have you ever wished you could combine your love for contemporary art, grunge music and museums into one neat little package? I know I sure have. Well, now you can! The Birmingham Museum of Art will present this season’s second Art on the Rocks, called “Revolver Party,” and the festivities will be a bit grungier than last time. As usual, there will be plenty to do at Art on the Rocks. There will be a scavenger hunt with a chance to win a piece of jewelry from Bromberg’s, so search for clues around the museum’s galleries and you might walk away with a bit of bling to show for it. Guests will be able to try their own shot at artistic greatness with the Creation Station. Birmingham’s own poet and performance artist Sharrif Simmons will host “BMA Speaks!”, a series of spoken word performances, on the museums upper outside plaza. Curator of American art Graham Boettcher will host “Artshots,” a short guided tour and discussion of the Ashcan School, an art movement from the early 20th Century that portrayed the poorer, grungier side of New York. Live music will be provided by The Posies, a powerpop/grunge band that’s been playing in various forms since the 1980s. You can also get a VIP pass and receive free admission to “Who Shot Rock & Roll?” the VIP tent, the VIP photo booth and more. VIP passes are free to museum members, $35 to non-members. If you’re not already a member, feel free to join at the door or online. Tickets to the event itself are $10 for members and $20 for nonmembers. Visit their website at www.artsbma.org for more information or to sign up for membership. Head to the museum, rock out and enjoy the museum’s collection.
THE LAST CALL OF CTHULHU: Do you want to know the first thing I look for in an event when I’m trying to decide where to go on a given night? The looming threat of insanity and a deep sense of terror down in my soul. Very first thing. True story. Anyway, if you’re into that kind of thing, Das HAUS, the German club between Rogue Tavern and Urban Standard on Second Avenue North, is hosting a “Night of Cthulhu.” For those of you not in the know, Cthulhu was a character created by H. P. Lovecraft, the master of the supernatural and frightening, as part of his Cthulhu Mythos, a series of stories about the evil character and his dark brood. Cthulhu is one of the Great Old Ones, huge, malevolent and vastly powerful extraterrestrials. He has the head of an impossibly huge octopus, complete with tentacles, the wings of a bat and the body of a dragon. He’s the size of a mountain, his mere glance can drive mortals insane and his existence has caused all of mankind’s anxiety. Put simply, Cthulhu is a bad, bad dude. So, of course the obvious thing to do is to base a night of drinking and partying around this massive baddie. Or at least it was for the people at Das HAUS. Events for the night will include a scavenger hunt mystery, which I assume will lead you straight into the Mountains of Madness before you finally get your commemorative stein; fun and games, which I’m assuming might include such riveting activities as fear pong and flip-out cup; and mythos-themed food and drink. (A gin and tonic that drives you mad with the first sip? Who knows.) Das HAUS will also offer discounts to customers that come to the event in their best mythos-themed outfit. Shame on the person that walks through the door with an armful of pool noodles duct taped to his waste. That’s cheating and you know it. There will also be short films and music provided by DJ mianrussel and Revenge Story. The event is all ages until 10 p.m., 18 and up from 10 p.m. to midnight and 21 and up from midnight to 2 a.m. After 8:30 p.m., the cover is $5. So slither your way over to Das HAUS. I guarantee you’ll have a crazy time.
JOSH RITTER, GOOD PEOPLE AND ALYS STEPHENS: Josh Ritter was named one of the 100 greatest living songwriters by Paste magazine. Good People Brewing Company arose a few years ago to become one of the most popular and well-received breweries in the region. Birmingham Mountain Radio became wildly popular recently after filling the alternative music void in Birmingham’s radio scene. The Alys Stephens Center is one of Birmingham’s best performing arts centers. Separately, each of these elements is superb. But together, you get something truly special. Josh Ritter and The Royal City Band’s show at the Alys Stephens Center is the first show of the “Good Songs, Good People” series, a collaboration between Alys Stephens Center, Birmingham Mountain Radio and Good People Brewing Co. Each ticket to the show comes with a commemorative “adult” sippy cup and two brews from Good People. I’m not sure what could possibly make a sippy cup adult—unless they stamped “I’M AN ADULT” on the side in big bold letters— but I’ll take their word for it. Before Josh Ritter takes the stage there will be a pre-party featuring food from Jim ‘N’ Nick’s. Good music, good food and good beer. What more could you possibly want from your evening? The preshow starts at 6:30 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $30. Call (205) 975-2787 or visit alysstephens. uab.edu for more information.
IMPACT YOUR COMMUNITY: Imagine you’re a teenager again. (If you are a teenager, just keep reading.) You’re young, you’re invincible and endless possibilities stretch out before you. Now throw a child into that mixture. Doesn’t seem quite so easy now, huh? Well for over 8000 teens in Alabama, that’s reality. Teens with children face many difficulties, uncertainty for their future chief among them. They can be helped, though. IMPACT, a non-profit, non-denominational Christian agency, counsels new teen moms and is seeking adult female volunteers, 21 and older, to be mentors. New volunteers are always welcomed. Call (205) 916- 0123 or email email@example.com to find out more about volunteering. Volunteer training will be held on this date from 6 to 9 p.m. A meal will be provided free of charge. Volunteer for IMPACT. There’s someone out there in our very city who feels alone and unsure about their future. You can help them.
DOG DAYS AT ARTBREAK: Has all the fun and flair gone out of your daily half-hour lunch break? Are you trying to find some way to entertain yourself other than timing how fast you can wolf down your turkey sandwich? Well head to Artbreak at the Birmingham Museum of Art. For 30 minutes, Charles Becker of Becker Animal Hospital will talk about some of the pets seen throughout the museum’s collection. You even get a free dessert at Oscar’s café afterwards! Can you think of a better way to brighten up your dull lunch break? I sure can’t. Artbreak will be held from noon to 12:30 p.m. It’s free to attend. Just call (205) 254-2565 or visit www.artsbma.org for more information.
A BIG DEAL AT LITTLE SAVANNAH: You may think that local food is a novelty. Maybe farmers markets seem quaint, but impractical. Maybe it’s just too hard to source where your food comes from. Well, like it or not, you’re going to have to develop a taste for it. Shipping food from across the country or across the sea requires massive amounts of oil. Mark my words, soon enough that model of agriculture won’t work anymore. Then you’ll be able to choose local or choose nothing. If you’re the progressive type and feel like being on the right side of the future, head down to Little Savannah. Every Wednesday they host Community Farm Table, where they bring in a local farmer and serve a meal composed entirely of local food. You can’t get much better than dining at a local restaurant in the company of the person who grew the food you’re eating. And all for only $35! This week’s farmer will be Bonnie Jones of Jones Farm in Clanton. Make reservations by calling (205) 591-1119 or visiting www.littlesavannah.com.
THE BRIDGES AT BOTTLETREE: Plenty of local bands play at Bottletree, but how often do we get a homecoming? Okay, so The Bridges are actually from Oxford, Ala, not Birmingham, but this family band is still originally from just down the road. The Bridges manage to seamlessly blend pop and folk music, with melodies that come across as Southern and folksy mixed seamlessly with hooks and choruses that have the catchiness of a power pop song. Another fun fact: The Bridges is composed entirely of cousins from one family. The Bridges will be playing with Gum Creek Killers at Bottletree. The show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10. Call (205) 533-6288 or visit www.thebottletree.com for more information.