American folk, jazz, classical, Eastern European and Middle Eastern music delivered with indie-punk attitude—Denver’s eclecti-tastic DeVotchKa are fighting the good fight to make sousaphones cool again ... or at least for the first time. The band’s third and latest release, How It Ends (DeVotchKa.net), should keep them out of the mainstream for another year, but if names like 16 Horsepower or the Dirty Three mean anything to you, this is what you’ve been waiting for. Egos, 668 S. State, 9:30 p.m. Info: 521-5255.
In just the past three years, Nashville singer-songwriter Jeffrey Steele has penned more than 200 (!) tunes that have gone on to be recorded by the likes of Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Trace Adkins, Montgomery Gentry, Collin Raye, Diamond Rio, LeAnn Rimes, Rascal Flatts and more, amounting to over 17 million airplays (!!) documented by BMI. Needless to say, the southpaw guitarist has no shortage of material when touring on his own—have those requests ready. The Spur, 350-1/2 Main, Park City, 9 p.m. Info: 435-615-1618.
Also Thursday: Viva Voce, Mendoza Line (Kilby Court); Malady (Lo-Fi Café).
FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION FESTIVAL
Brought to you by Mayor Rocky Anderson and KRCL 90.9 FM, the Freedom of Expression Festival is “a celebration of community, showcasing old-fashioned stumping from local political candidates, non-profit organizations and the citizens of Utah themselves,” and “designed to promote the unfettered exchange of opinions and ideas.” Providing the unfettered exchange of music will be locals the Debbie Graham Band, Motherless Cowboys, Chubby Bunny and Tolchock Trio. The Merrill Cook Experience and Nancy Workman Overdrive, however, deferred. Library Square, 200 E. 400 South, 3-7 p.m. Free.
All high cheekbones and perfect haircuts, it makes sense that Swedish girl-rawk foursome Sahara Hotnights’ big-label debut, Kiss & Tell (RCA), is accordingly sleek ‘n’ polished; it’s almost like they conspired with the Mooney Suzuki for a synchronized indie-to-major makeover. But, as evidenced on their July SLC visit, Maria Andersson & Co. aren’t so prim and proper live, mussing their new-waved pop with the garage-rock ’tude we’ve come to expect from Ikea Land. Sound, 579 W. 200 South, 8 p.m. Tickets: 800-888-8499 (with Paris TX and Starmy).
Also Friday: Indigo Girls (Kingsbury Hall); The M’s (Kilby Court); Lucybell (In the Venue).
JEDI MIND TRICKS
Simmer down, George Lucas: Philadelphia hip-hop crew Jedi Mind Tricks are all about the classic boom-bap school of rap—Public Enemy, Kool G. Rap, Boogie Down Productions, et al—and the new Legacy of Blood (Jedi-Mind-Tricks.com) is their most pointed tribute yet, e-critics be damned. “There are always going to be little nerds on the Internet talking shit,” emcee Vinnie Paz says. “Those are the same nerds who don’t have the balls to come up to you in your face.” Lo-Fi Café, 127 S. West Temple, 7 p.m. Info: LoFiCafe.com (with 7L & Esoteric, Outerspace and Expression).
Also Saturday: Rock & Ribs Fest (Gallivan Center); Clumsy Lovers (DV8); 800 Octane, Thunderfist (Burt’s Tiki Lounge); Dead Science (Sugarbeats).
VOODOO GLOW SKULLS
With the release of Adiccion, Tradicion, Revolucion (Victory), Riverside’s Voodoo Glow Skulls have been throwing down their Latino-tinged mix of punk, metal and ska for 14 years now—it’s the best way to build a fan base. “Not many bands can say they have fans two or three generations deep,” VGS singer Frank Casillas told Aversion.com. “Now, [fans] bring their little nephews or brothers with them.” Lo-Fi Café, 127 S. West Temple, 7:30 p.m. All-ages. Info: LoFiCafe.com (with Pistol Grip and Los Kung Fu Monkeys).
Also Sunday: Jesse Dayton (Egos).
A band with songs like “Stairway to the Free Bird On the Way to the Smokey Water” and “Stop Eating While I’m Smoking” had better have the rock to back up the talk—no prob with Jersey City’s Rye Coalition. Despite the funny titles, the band’s On Top (Tiger Style) is a serious rock & roll business merger of AC/DC and the Jesus Lizard. As for RC’s Interscope record deal, think corporate limbo. In the Venue, 579 W. 200 South, 7:30 p.m. Tickets: 800-888-8499 (wih Your Enemies’ Friends).
Known simply as Dios before heavy-metal elf Ronnie James Dio sued ’em in a desperate cry for attention, SoCal’s Dios Malos are more Beach Boys than Black Flag—both former residents of their Hawthorne hometown. Dios Malos’ sunny-pop Startime Records debut, Dios (take that, Ronnie), dropped earlier this year, but the big news is that “You Got Me All Wrong” will appear on The O.C. Mix 2 soundtrack compilation. Peter Gallagher vs. RJD? No contest. Liquid Joe’s, 1249 E. 3300 South, 9:30 p.m. Info: 467-5637.
Also Monday: Mest, Hawthorne Heights (In the Venue).
ICON OF COIL
Machines Are Us (Metropolis), the latest album from Norwegian electronic duo Icon of Coil, has been reviewed as “Head-knocking, boot-stomping, fist-launching, electro-industrial-pop anthems certain to remove the dance floor quarantine,” not to mention “Mechanoid fun!” Naturally, IC’s slamming, metallic grooves involve more machines than men, which is fine with singer-programmer Andy LaPlegua: “[Live musicians] is not what it’s all about—what it’s all about is to bring out music, to do a show.” Area 51, 451 S. 400 West, 7 p.m. Info: 534-0819.
Also Tuesday: Tech N9ne (Suede); And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead (Urban Lounge).
The Silos (Halo); Taking Back Sunday (Utah State Fairpark); Her Space Holiday (Kilby Court).
Walls of Jericho (Lo-Fi Café, Oct. 8). Bloody Lovelies (Halo, Oct. 8). Old 97’s (In the Venue, Oct. 9). Jesse Sykes (Suede, Oct. 9). Gift of Gab (Ego, Oct. 12). Fishbone (Velvet Room, Oct. 13). Rachel Yamagata (Liquid Joe’s, Oct. 13). Dope (The Ritz, Oct. 13). Blood Brothers (Lo-Fi Café, Oct. 14). Drive-By Truckers (Oct. 18). P.J. Harvey (In the Venue, Oct. 19). Les Claypool (Velvet Room, Oct. 21). Legendary Shack Shakers (Halo, Oct. 26). The Cramps (Sound, Oct. 27). RJD2 (Egos, Oct. 27).