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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of featured events, including our editor's picks for the week: Mad Professor with Quantic at Duke's Bohemian Grove Bar on Wednesday the 21st.

If you haven't already, be sure to check out our new and improved events calendar on-line for complete event listings, a location guide to find your way about the city, restaurant reviews, and more.

Mad Professor with Quantic

Wednesday, September 21

Combine an interest in all things electronic, a love for Motown, and a serious history in dub music; shock this mixture to life, and you get Neil “Mad Professor” Fraser. Mad Professor has been making slow motion dance music as a solo artist and collaborator since before you could walk, beginning with the reggae inspired dub tracks on his 1983 album In A Rub A Dub Style to 2009’s Audio Illusions of Dub, but widely known for his now legendary Dub Me Crazy series featuring “Beyond the Realms Of Dub,” “Escape to the Asylum Of Dub,” and “Dub Maniacs on the Rampage,” which broke ground in the dub scene with the Professor’s electronic variations and sound effects. “Kalimba Dub” the first track on Fraser’s latest album, kicks off with the reminder that “In the beginning there was dub. And then came dubstep.” Type “Mad Professor” into Google and you’ll inevitably find videos and photos of Fraser sitting next to a mixing board the length of a surfboard (which he probably built from scratch) and sharing some real talk about the roots of dubstep. The 56-year-old pioneer of dub music makes the trip across the Atlantic from his home in London for a live set at DBGB on Wednesday (Sept 21). Joining him will be fellow Ninja Tune recording artist Quantic. Real name Will Holland, this UK born producer, musician, and DJ has been hard at work for over 10 years, evolving across various styles: from soul and jazz, to electronic, Latin, reggae and cumbia. Buffalo dubstep leader Big Basha opens this eclectic dance party. —cory perla

10pm. Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar, 253 Allen St. (240-9359). $15. 21+.

Friday, September 16

Xiu Xiu

Light beings are often drawn to dark beings, which is why even the most happy-go-lucky can be sucked in by the eerie, yet captivating sounds of experimental pop rockers Xiu Xiu. Pronounced “shoe shoe,” the avant-garde rock band is driven by singer/songwriter Jamie Stewart, a creepy guy who sings about creepy things, particularly representing the pain and difficulties he often encounters. Since their formation in 2000, Xiu Xiu has been known for their shock value: giving away t-shirts written in real blood (man-made “chiller font”), asking fans to bring locks of hair to their shows, and shining light on an Asian girl purging herself throughout their music video “Dear God, I Hate Myself.” But what is even more shocking, is side B of their new 7” Polyvinyl single, “Daphny”—a full-blown cover of Rihanna’s upbeat dance track “Only Girl (In the World).” Yes, the melodramatic goth-pop Stewart singing sweet nothings to Rhianna lyrics—”won’t you take me like a thief in the night, hold me like a pillow make me feel right,” tinged of course with winy synthesizers and new-wave vocals (think Talking Heads’ David Byrne). Side A of the single “Daphny” is more Xiu Xiu-like, a deeper, more terrifying track telling the real-life story of Stewart’s friend who was raped by a police officer after being arrested for shoplifting. As Xiu Xiu members beside Stewart come and go, Stewart will be performing at Mohawk Place on Friday (Sept 16) with his new lineup of Parenthetical Girls’ Zac Pennington and the Dead Science’s Sam Mickens. The Kindest Lines and Hedgehog open the show. —emilie hagen

8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 / themohawkplace.com). $12. 16+.

Saturday, September 17

Music is Art Festival

An annual favorite of local musicians, artists and festival-goers returns as the Music is Art Festival settles in scenic Delaware Park this Saturday (Sept 17). Now in its ninth installment, the day-long event, started in 2003 by Goo Goo Dolls bassist and MiA founder Robby Takac, has blossomed into the type of anticipated, yearly festival that an arts-conscious city like Buffalo deserves. This year’s jam-packed festival not only boasts a new, spacious location in Delaware Park behind Albright-Knox, but an expanded field of bands covering a range of genres between five stages. Among the 50 bands set to perform are Canadian jazz fusion outfit Brownman Electryc Trio (pictured), Free Henry!, The 12/8 Path Band, Autopunch, The Etchings, The Heavenly Chillbillies, and Dostsun Moon. Buffalo’s DJ’s are also well-represented, with a dozen of Buffalo’s best mixologists on-hand for the festival, including DJ Soma, Cutler, DJ Sashimi, and Medison. Complementing the music aspect are 50 photographers, artists, and non-profits that will set up shop, display their work and sell their wares. If that doesn’t cover all the bases, Habit Dance Project, Mizjudged Motivation and Fleuron Rouge are among the dozen dance acts putting on performances. The popular Kids Village is back this year with an exclusive stage—featuring a drum circle and acts like the Traveling Dress Up Theater—and even more interactivities for kids than ever before. The ninth annual Music is Art Festival is sure to deliver a fitting send-off to the festival season, celebrating the sights and sounds that make up Buffalo’s vibrant arts community. —jon wheelock

For the full lineup, visit: www.musicisart.org

10am to 10pm. Delaware Park, behind the Albright Knox Art Gallery. (musicisart.org/festival). Free.

Saturday, September 17

Handsome Jack

The garage rock scene in Buffalo is dominated by one band: Handsome Jack. Veterans of psychedelic rock since the mid 2000s, the four-piece band from Lockport look to release their latest full-length album, Super Moon, this Saturday (Sept 17) at Nietzsche’s. On their 2007 album Heatseeker Handsome Jack revealed some heavy, 1970s influenced garage rock with a punked-up modern edge. They honed that sleezy blues rock sound on their 2009 self-titled follow up only to turn the tides on Super Moon. Where their previous two albums had them teetering on the edge of Black Rebel Motorcylce Club-like heavy rock, Super Moon lowers the gravity with pop structures, thick melodic guitar riffs, and down-home vocals. With a little more cowbell these guys would step into Mountain territory, but instead their sound stays firmly planted between Captain Beefheart and Led Zeppelin. Guitarist/vocalist Jamison Passuite, bassist Joey Verdonselli, organist/guitarist Phill Allport, and newfound drummer Chad Salmeri will rock their hearts out this weekend with support from Johnny Nobody and the Mordaunt Sisters. Don’t miss this opportunity to support the local rock scene and don’t forget to bring some extra cash to pick up Super Moon on CD or vinyl. —cory perla

9:30pm. Nietzsche’s, 248 Allen St. (886-8539 / nietzsches.com). $5.

Monday, September 19

Miracle Tomato

Have you ever wondered if the tomato is a fruit or vegetable? Or just how many slices of pizza Americans consume in a second? Or how to say goodbye to what is lost? Your appetite for knowledge will be satisfied after seeing Miracle Tomato, a humorous, serious, and moving performance that views history through the tomato. This traveling play features Angelina, a waitress-explorer—played by Jessica Cerullo—who’s next stop is in Buffalo. Cerullo will invoke the audience to help her tell the story of the tomato, along with exploring vulnerability, appropriation, consumption, cultivation, and the changing dynamic of food and family in Angelina’s hometown and all of the places she visits. Angelina will not only tell the history of the tomato but also her own, with the help of her two identical sisters Valentina, a bioengineer, and Josephina, a food activist. Projected slides contribute to the story. Miracle Tomato, created and performed by Cerullo, premiered in May 2007 at P.S. 122 in New York City as part of the soloNOVA Festival and toured the U.S. The play received a “Best of the Fest” award at the Boulder International Fringe Festival and was named in the Top Ten Theater Performances of the Year in Denver/Boulder in 2007. The play runs one hour and will be performed at The New Alt Performance Group in conjunction with the Buffalo Artists Learning Lab. All proceeds go to Grassroots Buffalo, a local organization turning vacant lots around the city into community gardens. This is Cerullo’s first time in Buffalo, so come out and make sure our local tomatoes make a good impression! —ariel peters

8pm. Alt Theater, 255 Great Arrow Ave. (868-6847 / alttheatre.com). $20 suggested donation, $15 for students.

Tuesday, September 20

The Human League

“Don’t you want me, baby? Don’t you want me, oh?” When Phillip Oakey crooned these lines in the Human League’s 1981 super-hit “Don’t You Want Me?” off their triple-platinum album Dare, he never imagined the impact it would have on the decade’s music scene. The song helped spark an evolution away from the brawny, late 1970s proto-punk scene, melded together by testosterone spewing anarchists like the Stooges and the Sex Pistols, to an era defined by sensitive synth-poppers, where men gave women tips on how to apply make-up and the only testosterone in existence fueled Don Johnson’s Testarossa. In regard to the bands spontaneous success, Oakey “never had any intention of doing anything in America,” according to a 1983 Rolling Stone interview. He attributes part of the Human League’s chart-topping achievement to the unpredictability of the American music market at the time. As for the League’s live show, Oakey admits that the band’s initial performances suffered due to lack of rehearsal, since each group member tracked their parts separately during the recording process, but three decades on the band has perfected their craft, engaging audiences with an entertaining concert experience. So if you’re a hard man, or if you’re a child, a husband or a lover, be sure to catch the Human League live at the Riviera Theater next Tuesday (Sept 20) for some hardcore love action. Canadian new wave act Men Without Hats open the show. —brett perla

7:30pm. Riviera Theatre, 67 Webster St., North Tonawanda (692-2413 / rivieratheatre.org). $27 advance, $32 day of show.

Tuesday, September 20

Big D And The Kids Table

Entering the music scene at the peak of third wave ska, Big D and the Kids Table have come to define the genre in the late 2000s. Ska music may be in a waning phase right now but that hasn’t stopped Big D from consistently releasing albums for the past 10 years. Their latest SideOneDummy release, 2011’s For the Damned, the Dumb & the Delirious, is 18 tracks of horn blaring ska-punk right from the album’s opener “Walls,” an instantly classic ska tune complete with blisteringly fast drums, melodic horns, and Operation Ivy-like vocals. It can be hard to maintain that classic ska sound across a decade but Big D has done it successfully and with a pleasure that is evident in their music. “There are people who want to be in a band and then there are musicians,” said Big D and the Kids Table frontman David McWane. These eight punks from Boston happen to be both. Fresh off of the Vans Warped Tour, don’t miss Big D when they come to the Town Ballroom on Tuesday (Sept 20) with special guests the Have Nots and Lightning Killed My Parents. —cory perla

7pm. Town Ballroom, 681 Main St. (852-3900 / townballroom.com). $12 advance, $14 day of show.

Thursday, September 22

Mute Math

“Can you believe this world’s just a television blaring/A million devils at once?” Mutemath’s Paul Meany really has his finger on something on the song “The Nerve” off their newest album Armistice. You should take notice, because not only are these guys highly intelligent, their synth-driven art-rock sound and digital layers put them on the cusp of something the indie world has never seen. Since their 2006 self-titled, self-released debut album, which consequently began a legal battle with Warner Brothers, Mutemath has managed to gain a sizeable following and plenty of touring exposure, playing for thousands at Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Warped Tour, and CMJ Music Marathon. Their 2007 music video for the song “Typical” had 100,000 views in less than four days. Former Earthsuit member Paul Meany can wield a keytar with the best of them, while the rest of the band falls in place with intricate melodies and harmonies, mixing everything from prog rock to jazz, funk and electronica. Mutemath promises to be one of the most sought-after shows this fall, so you’d better get to Mohawk Place on Thursday (Sept 22) if you want a dose of knowledge from one of indie’s smartest outfits. —jon wheelock

6pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 / themohawkplace.com). $20 advance, $25 day of show. 16+.