Ponytail is the sound of starting from scratch, blindfolded and game for anything. Formed in a class on “parapainting”—a course focused on arts that run parallel to painting—the Baltimore quartet was thrown together like a kickball team’s lastpicked members, their teacher uniting them in the spirit of spontaneous creativity. And that’s exactly what Ponytail’s music is like—a seemingly spontaneous burst of boundless energy that flies in the face of conventional “art school” bands. Their new sophomore release Ice Cream Spiritual maintains their debut’s fast-paced punk-like intensity and fun vibes that collectively give the impression of Erase Errata, Animal Collective, Marnie Stern and Deerhoof blended in a Magic Bullet. Molly Seigel’s high-pitched coo-and-shriek remains at the forefront of almost math-rocky guitars and drums all following a pace that’s one steady frenetic freak-out. In other words, awesome. Kilby Court, 741 S. 330 West, 7:30 p.m. All-ages. Info: KilbyCourt.com
Sister Wives play the blues but after six years performing together they’ve proven to be one of Utah’s rocks—a stalwart group of professionals whose consistently solid recordings and lively performances combine both sultry and lighthearted takes on original songs and classic standards. The local powerhouse always seems primed for bigger things, but judging by how much fun they seem to have onstage maybe leaving town is overrated. Tonight, Sister Wives headlines a benefit concert to help raise funds for volunteers headed to Costa Rica where they’ll build a community center on the Osa Pennisula. The evening, scheduled to include an auction, dinner and kids activities, will culminate with the Wives whose show will be recorded for a live CD. Be a part of history in the making. Holladay United Church of Christ, 2631 E. Murray-Holladay Road, 7:30 p.m. All-ages. Tickets: 801-272-0050
FRANKI CHAN, TOXIC AVENGER
As one of the original figures behind LA’s booming hipster dance scene, Franki Chan helped introduce to the West Coast mainstream acts like MSTRKRFT and Justice. He also ruled the club circuit with Steve Aoki before a falling out inspired him to launch a rival party night. But Chan is resourceful and industrious. His DIY record label/ comic distributor IHEARTCOMIX continues to turn out albums/singles/remixes by a diverse roster of electronic and punk artists including Matt & Kim and Designer Drugs (who played SLC just days ago. Chan also mans his own wheels of steel—and occasionally plays drums in HeartsRevolution— performing DJ sets nodding to ‘80s/’90s warehouse/basement shows. We Love DJ Franki Chan Mix Vol. 1 fuses together a tasty blend of Beyonce, Kanye, Tom Tom Club, Human League and Missy Elliott, among other collar-popping heroes. Trapp Door, 615 W. 100 South, 9 p.m.
RYAN BINGHAM & THE DEAD HORSES
Ryan Bingham is the real deal. Oh, sure, you might recognize him from ER where his song “Southside of Heaven” helped round out one of the longrunning television drama’s final episodes, but unlike many artists who get a leg up on TV, Bingham isn’t typical Hollywood material. Born and raised in West Texas, the 26-year-old country/Americana artist paid his dues laying concrete, riding bulls and dodging trouble. He got his hands dirty and didn’t bother to clean up much before recording Mescalito (Lost Highway), a searing debut full of downtrodden vocals and spirited slide guitar, kettle drums, harmonica and sweet mandolin. Bingham and his crew—Matt Smith, Corby Schaub, Elijah Ford—typically play joints like Whiskey Dick’s, but even in an all-ages club they’ll deliver a sound worthy of any roughneck saloon. Velour, 135 N. University Ave., Provo, 8 p.m. All-ages. Info: VelourLive.com
The Detroit Cobras (Urban Lounge, May 14); Sara Watkins (State Room, May 15); Scott Weiland (Murray Theater, May 15); Jeff Hanson (Kilby Court, May 16); Jackie Greene (The State Room, May 16); Flight of the Conchords (Abravanel Hall, May 17); The Flatlanders (The State Room, May 17); Pierced Arrows (Bar Deluxe, May 18); Lady Sovereign (In the Venue, May 19); My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult (Urban Lounge, May 19); Carrie Rodriguez (State Room, May 19); Magnolia Electric Co. (Urban Lounge, May 20); Flosstradamus (W Lounge, May 20)
Fri., Aug. 1, 7:30 p.m. / free