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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of featured events, including our editor's picks for the week: AFI, this Saturday, February 1st at the Town Ballroom.

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


Saturday, February 1

Reinvention is important for any band. Most legendary bands and musicians have taken a chance on reinvention in their careers, from Madonna to David Bowie, and the Beastie Boys. Davey Havok, frontman of hard rock band AFI, says that reinvention is something that has kept his band going. “It’s just natural for us,” he says referring to the occasionally abrupt changes his band has employed since they formed in Northern California in 1991. The band’s first reinvention occured when guitarist Jade Puget joined in 1999 for their fourth album, Black Sails in the Sunset. Puget added a darkly romantic aspect to the band in his melodic approach and gothic style. In 2003 though, after the release of fan favorite record The Art of Drowning, the band went through their biggest change; from underground to mainstream. After signing to a major record label deal they released Sing the Sorrow, perhaps their most well received record to date. Songs like “The Leaving Song Pt. II” and “Girl’s Not Grey” went in a more melodic and moody direction. They ditched the bondage attire seen in the videos from their Art of Drowning era and adorned black suits and red ties. Now, a decade since Sing The Sorrow, the band has released their most atmospheric and perhaps darkest record to date in Burials. Though the album marks a reinvention in the sense that tempos have changed and the band have created more space in their music, Havok believes that they didn’t take this move far enough. “I don’t think Burials is too dark by any means, I don’t think art can be too dark. For me the problem is that it is dark at all because that is what is to be expected of us,” he said in a phone interview. For Havok though, the only expectations that matter are his own personal expectations, and those expectations are what have moved this band forward over two decades of music. AFI come to the Town Ballroom on Saturday (Feb 1) with Youth Code and Coming.

- cory perla

7pm Town Ballroom, 681 Main St. (852-3900 / $29 advance, $32 day of show

Saturday, February 1

Avery Sunshine

No one is immune to Avery Sunshine’s contagious beats. Rooted in gospel, her voice speaks boldly and tells a remarkable, yet familiar story—one of love, loss, healing and the revitalization that comes out on the other side of it all. With vocals and lyrics that are thick and strong yet jazzy-smooth, her music carries an addictive tone that keeps her listeners aching for more Sunshine. Her musical scope expands from soul and jazz to classical and hip hop. Both sides of her versatility are consistently on overdrive, with cuts that personify everything you could want in an R&B sound. Inspiring songs like “Today,” and “Blessin’ Me” try to shed light on the world and the forces that relentlessly try to bring us down. Her diverse voice constantly pushes the envelope, yet there is just enough consistency in overall tone to give her some intensity in a crowded field of female artists. Her tracks harmoniously blend into a rich medley well worth sinking your teeth into. In concert her sweet and soft voice is infused with just enough bubbling live instrumentation that the music borders on an explosion of purely orgasmic sound. Avery Sunshine will perform at the Tralf Music Hall on Saturday (Feb 1).

- kellie powell

8pm The Tralf Music Hall, 622 Main St. (852-2860 / $35 advance, $40 day of show

Saturday, February 1

Paul Hage Mirage CD Release Party

We’re all in need of some warmer vibes right about now, and this Saturday (Feb 1), Shea’s Smith Theater will be a musical oasis for the winter-weary as Paul Hage’s Mirage celebrates the release of their newest album and heats things up with their smooth, Mediterranean-inspired jazz. Led by Buffalo native, composer and multi-instrumentalist Paul Hage, Mirage gives contemporary jazz a global perspective by combining unique instrumentation with the rhythms and melodies from the three continents that border the Mediterranean Sea. Genres such as flamenco, acid, and smooth jazz are met with classical-style guitar playing from Hage and bandmate Dan Innes, creating an expressive fusion of world music that has become the band’s trademark. Percussionist and Moroccan-born Hicham—playing bongos, Djembe, and Derbuki among other instruments—lays down colorful beats that gives life to the band’s ambient tones. With the level of musicianship and cultural awareness that Mirage displays, it’s a language everyone can understand.

- jon wheelock

7pm Shea’s Smith Theatre, 658 Main Street (240-960) $20 (includes new album)

Saturday, February 1

The Adam Carolla Show Live Podcast

Radio has been a home for comedian Adam Carolla, though the basic idea of “radio” has morphed since the 49-year-old became the host of Loveline in 1995. Now the comedian, known for his television roles on The Man Show with Jimmy Kimmel and his short-lived talk show Too Late with Adam Carolla, is the host of an award winning daily podcast known as The Adam Carolla Show. The podcast, which launched in 2009, earned a number one spot on the iTunes podcast charts in only one day. It was selected as “Best Audio Podcast” that year and had a record number of downloads between 2009 and 2011. On the show he talks about everything from sports to music and movies on a daily basis in his infamously snarky style. Recent guests have included Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad, director Judd Apatow, and Grammy Award winning musician Wyclef Jean. The comedian, who is also a New York Times best-selling author, will bring his live podcast to the UB Center For The Arts on Saturday (Feb 1) where he’ll perform his trademark comedy bits such as “What Can’t Adam Complain About” and “Why I Hate LA” along with a hilarious multimedia presentation featuring pictures and video of all the great stories fans have come to love. Carolla will be joined by fellow podcaster and co-host Alison Rosen and sound effects whiz Bald Bryan to present his outspoken, one-of-a-kind podcast to a Buffalo audience.

- cory perla

8pm Mainstage Theatre, UB Center for the Arts, 103 Center For The Arts (654-ARTS / $42 general, $27 students (any school)

Wednesday, February 5

Songs of Freedom: The James Connolly Songbook With Mat Callahan and Yvonne Moore

In 1916, Irish revolutionary James Connolly, wounded, was tied to a chair in front of an English firing squad. The firing squad pulled their triggers, ending the life of a man who helped lead a rebellion earlier that year during which approximately 1,250 people stormed some of the most prominent buildings in Dublin. The rebels’ aim was to end British rule in Ireland. The rebellion is now known as the Easter Uprising. The rebels eventually surrendered and those still alive were sentenced to death. Their legacy is due not to their heroic rebellion, but ironically, to the revulsion over the execution of wounded rebels, including Connolly. Following Connolly’s execution, public opinion turned the rebels from scoundrels to heroes, and the British appeased the Irish by releasing the remaining rebels, who went on to rekindle the republican movement that eventually won more independence for Ireland. In the midst of this, Connolly edited the Songs of Freedom, a historical collection of revolutionary songs, which was considered lost for several decades. Now musician Mat Callahan has revived these revolutionary tunes in the form of Songs of Freedom: The James Connolly Songbook. He and fellow musician Yvonne Moore are taking the Songs of Freedom on tour in the form of rocking manifestos that celebrate of the life and work of Connolly. Their next stop will be local radical book store, Burning Books on Wednesday (Feb 5).

- cory perla

7pm Burning Books, 420 Connecticut St. (881-0791 / Free (donations accepted)

Thursday, February 6


Party-death-metal is kind of an oxymoron but it somehow works perfectly as a label for Atlanta, Georgia band Attila. Combining heavy metal breakdowns and bong rips, growling vocals and gold chains, punishing drum beats and lyrics Snoop Dogg would be proud of, the band are, if anything, unique. In their video for “About That Life,” an outrageous ode to drugs and womanizing, the band goes over the top with sleazy dance moves and cheesy guitar solos while keeping it real with red cups and a suburban house setting that probably belongs to one of the band member’s parents. “Instead of cracking open a few beers, raising their fists, hollering at chicks, and having a good time, so many bands choose to whine about their hearts and their hair,” the band says on their facebook page. Well, rest assured that if there was ever anything emo about Attila, it was beaten senseless by Jack Daniels and bad tattoos, long, long ago. Attila comes to the Waiting Room on Thursday (Feb 6) with support from I See Stars, Capture the Crown, Ice Nine Kills, Myka Relocate, and A Breath Alive.

- cory perla

6pm The Waiting Room, 334 Delaware Ave (852-3900 / $16 advance, $18 day of show

Looking Ahead...

Give For Greatness Presents: Lawyers For the Arts

Modern studies confirm that the arts can lower your blood pressure, raise IQ, strengthen the heart, and elevate your mood. It can also protect society from corruption by speaking truth to power. So important are the arts to society that when county cultural funding was cut in 2010, Artvoice created the non-profit Give For Greatness to raise private funds for arts organizations; attorney Leroi Johnson joined the G4G board early on to lend a hand. Now, for the third year in a row, a fundraiser titled Lawyers for the Arts will gather an all lawyer cast of musicians to trade their suits and brief cases for jeans and guitar pics to raise money for G4G. The Lawyers for the Arts 2014 show will be held at the Sportsmen’s Tavern on March 1 at 2pm. According to Johnson, G4G’s fundraising efforts have “helped to sustain the arts, with 100% of all money raised going to support local cultural and arts groups.” Johnson, an accomplished painter and talented Brazilian style guitarist, was also the business manager of his brother, the late Rick James. This year the event will also feature a fine art auction of works by local artist lawyers including those by real estate attorney Keri Caolocchia. Guitarist and singer attorney Joe O’Donnell whose band, the Bench and Bar Project will rock out on March 1 seems to agree, “Music is a nice break from the day to day rigors of practicing law. It’s good for the soul.”

- sandra cassidy

2pm Sportsmen’s Tavern, 326 Amherst St. (874-7734 / $15 general, $10 students, available at the door