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Some Musical Things To Do This Weekend

Saturday, January 5th


Tonight’s a night of local success stories who both nail their respective aesthetics. Sun Airway’s Jon Barthmus has quickly become a Philadelphia hero in our expanding indie scene. Two years ago, the debut of Nocturne of Exploded Crystal Chandelier on Dead Oceans put Barthmus and his brand of grandiose bedroom pop on the map, earning praise from far and wide (including a 7.8 out of 10 from Pitchfork). It’s a killer record, and his follow-up, Soft Fall, mere months old, is still circulating around in Philly headphones. It’s a beautifully-orchestrated collection of richly-conceived dreamlike pop confections that are laced with influences of pre-electronica (ELO/New Order), as well as modern future folk like Animal Collective and M83. Sun Airway’s fast becoming a name that’s rattled off alongside The War on Drugs, Pissed Jeans, Spacin’ and Swearin’ as up-and-coming big names in Philly. And opening for them is Cruiser, another young talent in Philly, whose excellent self-titled EP really shined this summer as a beach-infused bedroom project; Andy States’ hookup with producer Jeremy Park (Youth Lagoon) resulted in aural magic. These two acts together will be producing a ton of pretty rock. -Bill Chenevert

8pm. $12. Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave. 215.739.9684.


Get the new year off to a naughty start with the help of Liberty City Kings Drag and Burlesque. The pervy performers inaugurate their monthly residency at Tabu with “50 Shades of GAY!” a celebration of BDSM and kink. Lascivious Jane, den mother and dominatrix, has assembled a lineup sure to titillate the audience with its talent and its ta-tas. Mr. Gay Philly, Rough RydeHer, will grace the stage with ribald humor and a sexy striptease. The handsome drag king is known for his fine threads and flashy ride. Baltimore beauty Roma Mafia makes her debut at V&V, toying with conventional erotic expectations in a performance that is alternately dark and funny. There’s even a tassel-twirling contest for audience members who want to give back some love. Hostess extraordinaire the Notorious OMG encourages attendees to lace up their corsets or slip on fishnets for an additional discount at the door. -Raymond Simon

8pm. $8-$10. Tabu Lounge, 200 S. 12th St. 215.964.9675.


There are a few ways to introduce your children to classical music. One: Blast Baby Mozart at high-volume nonstop until the child goes to college. Two: Forgo the babysitter and drag the apple of your eye to a 15-hour rendition of Wagner’s Ring Cycle. Three: Take your child to Sound All Around at the historic Academy of Music on Saturday. May we suggest the latter? Since 1994, award-winning master storyteller Charlotte Blake Alston has been mesmerizing preschoolers and their families as the narrator, host and songstress for Sound All Around, an interactive concert series that introduces young children ages 3-5 to music, in collaboration with the Philadelphia Orchestra. Each Sound All Around concert introduces the audience to a particular member of the string, woodwind, brass or percussion family. On Saturday, together with Matthew Vaughn, associate principal trombonist for the Philadelphia Orchestra, Alston will lead her audience on a magical musical journey centering on brass instruments. During the 45-minute concert, named Best Music Program in Philadelphia magazine’s 2007 Best of Philly rankings, Alston will share stories, lead songs, introduce actual instruments that children can examine up close and much more. -Kishwer Vikaas

10am. 11:15am. $8.50. Academy of Music, 240 S. Broad Street. 215.893.1999.

Sunday, January 6th


Spend an evening riding the third wave of feminism, and take part in all sorts of cool activities in the company of other likeminded local ladies. In addition to a zine collection share, clothing swap, woodblock printing and an open mic featuring musicians, poets and performance artists, there will be a screening of Riot Grrrl: The Self-Told Narrative. The inclusive, community-fueled documentary and anthology explores the cultural impact of the Riot Grrrl movement from its homegrown beginnings to today, as well as examining the complexity of identities and experiences within the Riot Grrrl community. Following the screening, guests will have a chance to chat with the co-directors Vega Darling and Angie Young and catch a performance from local band the Dental Dames. -Nicole Finkbiner

4pm. $5. Eris Temple Arts, 602 S. 52nd St.


You know what you’re in for when the No. 1 thing that a band touts on their website is an opening slot for Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez. Yes, mindless, ingratiating, continuously auto-tuned pop dreck from a pack of 20-something males already way too old for their screaming tweener fans. The tour’s in honor of Action Item’s second full-length, Resolution, which features the smug, excruciating, edge-free “Last Day of Summer.” Despite the early start, the show will likely go on all night, what with five other bands on the bill, including the also Bieber-obssessed Before You Exit. (Their big YouTube hit is a cover of “As Long As You Love Me.”) Personally, I’d rather swim with the piranhas in Lady Gaga’s meat dress, but if you’re 12, and your mom agrees to take you, be nice to her afterward, all right? -Jennifer Kelly

4pm. $15. With Before You Exit, Deleasa, Josh Morgan, Paradise Fears + Hello Highway. Theater of the Living Arts, 334 South St. 215.922.1011.

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