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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of featured events, including our editor's pick for the week: The Prom of the Dead, taking place on Saturday the 23rd.

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.

Prom of the Dead

Saturday, October 23

Torn Space Theater will host its first ever fundraiser, a “Prom of the Dead,” costume ball on Saturday (October 23), 9pm-1am, at the Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center (562 Genesee Street). Everyone is invited to dress in their most frightening, offbeat, hilarious, or ingenious ballroom attire in order to compete for the costume contest’s prize and the coveted titles of Prom of the Dead King and Queen. “Members of Irving Klaws, along with Vic Lazar, will perform an exhilarating set by The Pixies; blues legend Dan Harper will bring devil music to the night; and local DJs will spin everything left-of-the-dial, including dance hall and rock and soul. James Wild and Ron Ehmke of Real Dream Cabaret will orchestrate the evening as emcees, guiding guests through an experience that promises to be both wildly entertaining and a bit unexpected.” Torn Space is known for its remarkable visuals. For Prom of the Dead you can expect “old-school prom décor terrorized by projections of B-side slasher flicks created by Reactionary Ensemble.”

Built in 1914, the beautiful Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center boasts a grand ballroom complete with hand-painted images pulled from Ukrainian history. A vital cultural center for Buffalo’s Ukrainian-American community and a must-see location in Buffalo, the venue is also perfect for a fab Halloween party. All proceeds from the evening will provide operational and programmatic support for Torn Space Theater. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Open bar, 9-10pm. Cash bar after 10pm. Tickets can be purchased by cash or check at any of Torn Space Theater’s productions of TRACE at 612 Fillmore Avenue, Rust Belt Books at 202 Allen St., Talking Leaves at 951 Elmwood Ave. and 3158 Main St., and Terrapin Station at 1172 Hertel Ave. Tickets can be purchased by credit card at For more information, please visit —anthony chase

9pm-2am. Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center, 562 Genesee St. (856-4476 /

Saturday, October 23

Harmony Rockets, Fuxa, Odiorne

Talk about a one-hit wonder. Harmony Rockets technically fall into that category, but only because their “one hit” is also their only song. It’s not exactly a Billboard top 200 hit, either. It takes a degree of commitment to listen to “Paralyzed Mind of the Archangel’s Void,” Harmony Rockets’ 41-minute-long, swelling, experimental soundscape, but the reward is substantial. If ever a piece of music had the ability to take the listener to another world, this is it. When Mercury Rev members Jonathan Donahue and Sean Thomas Mackowiak (a.k.a. Grasshopper) got together with a handful of experimental musicians at a bar in Upstate New York, “Paralyzed Mind” came into focus. The record is one impromptu take, resulting in an entrancing trip through sound, a trip that pulls the listener out to the edge of a huge, droning universe and plops them right back into a jungle of screeching horns, gurgling guitar strings, and pulsating bass. Five hundred copies of the album were released in Europe in 1995 and the group disbanded shortly afterward. In 2009, original members Jimy Chambers, Jason Russo, and Suzanne Thorpe of Harmony Rockets reunited to play the All Tomorrow’s Parties Festival in Minehead, UK. The band will take the stage at Soundlab on Saturday (October 23) with synth heavy electronic band Odiorne, featuring Jimy Chambers of Harmony Rockets (and formerly of Mercury Rev), as well as Detroit-based lo-fi space rock group Fuxa, local experimenters Dotsun Moon and Shapes of States, Pamela Swarts, and dubstep DJ AreHouse. —cory perla

7pm. Soundlab, 110 Pearl St. (440-5907 /

Saturday, October 23

Black Swans

Get bleak. The Black Swans make music for weeping, if you’re the type who enjoys a good weeping from time to time. The Columbus, Ohio band makes folk music for quiet nights of deep introspection, a soundtrack to drunken immobility curled up on a bed. The music is reminiscent of the softer side of Nick Cave, with singer/guitarist Jerry DeCicca and his Dylan-like vocal inflections setting the somber mood. The tender, sorrowful violin work of the late Noel Sayre helped to hone the band’s bummer-love sound. “I.D.W.2. F”, from the band’s Sex Brain EP, is a dirty, funny, weird song about lovers and their quirks. DeCicca sings plaintively, “I don’t want to fuck. I just want to spoon. I’m too sensitive of a man to be any closer to you.” It’s that kind of awkward, painful honesty that make the Black Swans beautiful. The band will be playing a house show this Sunday (October 24) at the home of Marty Boratin and Susan Tanner in Eden. (The mailing address is Hamburg, but physically, the home is in Eden. Contact 812-4671 or formore info.) The show starts at 5pm with a suggested donation of $5-10. Come early for a potluck cookout at 3pm. Patrick St. Johnson of Reverend Soapbox & the Rabble Rousers and Chylde will be opening. —peter vullo

5pm. House Concert, 7341 Nelson Drive, Hamburg, NY. $5-$10.

Sunday, October 24

Cro Mags

Touted as the band responsible for combining hardcore with heavy metal, the Cro-mags’ reputation precedes them. The band single-handedly defined the entire crossover movement and quite possibly saved metal and hardcore from becoming victims of their own derivativeness. The Cro-Mags are playing Mohawk Place on Sunday (Oct. 24), and hell’s coming with them. What should you expect to be in for? Fast and heavy music of the highest caliber. Throughout the years the Cro-Mags have seen an ever-revolving door of members, always led by Harley Flanagan who has seen the band through thick and thin while always ensuring a place as a genre cornerstone. You just don’t listen to hardcore or metal without knowing the Cro-Mags. Musically brutal in every way, their songs are screaming anthems of street life, survival, personal strength, and struggle—no pretense, no delusions. Doors are at 5pm and Detroit’s H8 INC open the show along with Buffalo’s own Rhinoceros and the March. —eric kendall

5pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 /

Sunday, October 24

King Center Charter School 10th Anniversary Concert, with Doug Cameron

Ten years ago, King Center Charter School was the first Charter School to open in the City of Buffalo. Located at 938 Genesee Street, King Center teaches grades K-5, provides transportation, a free summer program, data-driven instructional teaching, computers in each classroom, an early admissions program, a comprehensive special education program, and award winning facilities. Additionally, King Center has had a thriving Suzuki program since it opened. The Suzuki Method is an educational philosophy that strives to immerse students in a discipline (such as violin or piano) starting in early childhood. This Sunday (Oct. 24) the King Center will be celebrating their anniversary with a concert by Doug Cameron, a contemporary violinist, arranger, and composer, at the Elmwood Franklin School. Cameron is a UB graduate who has recorded eight CD’ and recorded and performed with artists such as Tom Petty, Cher, and the Allman Brothers. He is one of the innovators of contemporary and electric violin. Cameron will be performing on Sunday with a six-piece band, and the Muhammad School of Music and students from King Center’s Suzuki Program will accompany Cameron for a few selections. The concert MC will be Rich Kellman, former anchor for WGRZ Channel 2. VIP tickets are $50.00 per person and include a wine reception at 4pm and VIP concert seating. Oliver’s will cater the pre-concert dinner. Proceeds benefit the King Center Charter School. —jill greenberg

5pm. Elmwood Franklin School (Johnston Theater), 104 Amsterdam Ave. (877-5035). $30.00 General Admission, $50.00 VIP at King Center 891-7912. $30.

Sunday, October 24


What’s so funny ’bout peace love and understanding? Or punk rock reggae rebellion? Nothing really funny actually, but it sure is fun. Michae Franti has been bringing the party to politically charged music since his late 1980s industrial punk project the Beatnigs through the rallying political-electro-jazz outfit Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, to his current work with Spearhead—kind of a musical merger of the two with some added hip-hop, funk, and soul, along with some upping of the ante on the socio-political agenda. Franti and Spearhead’s latest album, The Sound of Sunshine, was released last month, a followup to 2008’s All Rebel Rockers. If the albums’ disparate titles confuse you, it’s because Sunshine turns out to be like a ray of just that: According to Rolling Stone, this is Franti’s “most poppy album yet…about celebration as much as agitation.” A major advocate for peace in the Middle East, Franti is always busy on the political front, and most recently appeared in the 2010 music documentary Sounds Like a Revolution. Franti & Spearhead bring both sunshine and revolution to the Town Ballroom this Sunday (October 24). —k. o’day

7pm. Town Ballroom, 681 Main St. (852-3900 / $28/advance; $31/day of show at Town Ballroom box office, Tops Markets, 223-6000.

Monday, October 25

The Besnard Lakes

The Besnard Lakes are the Dark Horse. The Besnard Lakes are the Roaring Night. These two statements, which happen to be the titles of the band’s second and third full-lengths respectively, sum this Montreal band’s music up perfectly. The group, led by husband and wife songwriters Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas, create dark, swirling psychedelia that draws upon classic influences such as Fleetwood Mac and My Bloody Valentine, which makes me think of making out to the apocalypse for some reason. The band’s airy, male/female vocal delivery rides atop some very cavernous guitar work, all the while being lured across the stereo field by a wash of vintage keyboards and pummeling drums. Songs begin in eerie, Twin Peaks territory and build to a thrall, like standing in a field during a lightning storm. The sonic thickness can partially be attributed to Lasek’s skilled production work. His Break Glass studios has been home to recordings made by some of Canada’s most promising musical exports, including Wolf Parade, Young Galaxy, Unicorns, and so on. His understanding of layering is evident in the Besnard Lakes ability to balance guitar solos on top of French horns, or put fragile ham radio recordings underneath a wall of synth distortion. The band will be performing at Mohawk Place on Monday (October 25). Joining them will be the Halifax group Wintersleep, supporting their new record New Inheritors. Rounding out the bill are rising local pysch pop pioneers the Bird Day, whose new album Collect Vibrations is simply awesome and has been getting them some much deserved national attention. —bryce march

>8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 / $10/$12