Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Newsweekly
Home Blogs Web Features Calendar Listings Artvoice TV Real Estate Classifieds Contact
Previous story: Film Now Playing
Next story: Wolf in Jeep's Clothing

See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of featured events, including our editor's pick for the week: The first Artvoice B.O.O.M! Quarterfinal show, featuring The Etchings, Autopunch, Lower Town Trio, and Social Scientists, at Nietzsche's this Saturday the 27th.

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.

Artvoice B.O.O.M! Live Quarterfinal

Wednesday, November 24

Fans of local original music should circle Saturday night on this holiday weekend to check out the four bands that collected the most online votes over the last month in the Artvoice Battle of Original Music (B.O.O.M.). The four competing acts—the Etchings, Autopunch, Lower Town Trio, and Social Scientists—collected some of the highest vote totals since we started the competition a few years back. Now, they get to square off in a good old-fashioned (21+) live battle of the bands, where ballots cast by audience members will determine the outcome. That’s why it’s important for their fans to show up in support. Past shows have provided a packed house for artists to put it all on the line in a tight half-hour set. What’s more, the winner Saturday night will gain a spot in the Grand Finale, which translates into even more exposure, plus a whopping cash award and the right to call themselves Artvoice B.O.O.M. Grand Champions. Past holders of the crown include Dali’s Ghost, TypeRelevant, and Photos of Wagons, so it’s a great way for a band to quickly raise its profile on the local scene. Come check out some of the best original acts the area has to offer—and if you’re in a local band, visit to find out how to enter the contest. It’s easy, free, and the next round starts December 9. —buck quigley

10pm. Nietzsche’s, 248 Allen St. (886-8539 / $5. Visit for more information about the competition.

Friday, November 26

A Tribute to Joe Bompczyk

So the word “legendary” gets thrown around without much to qualify it. Maybe that status ultimately comes down to those who are left around to continue to tell the legend. If that’s the case, Joe Bompczyk’s status is cemented. Anyone who saw him play in The Enemies during the heyday of Buffalo’s punk scene in the late 1970s/early 1980s or listened to the band’s clutch of releases will continue to attest to his greatness. 1980’s Products of the Streets goes down in the books as the best punk EP to be produced and unleashed in Western New York in the original punk era. Look at the record’s blazing prison-break cartoon cover and there’s a leather-jacket-clad Bombczyk caricature right in the middle. That’s where he always was. At the center of The Enemies economic, exuberant bursts of punk perfection was Bompczyk’s guitar, which could veer from snarling Stooges’ menace to high-octane surf rock precision. Post-Enemies, he lent his unmistakable axe skill and songwriting prowess to new wave pop outfit The Restless, which led to an all-too-brief professional “rock star” career with a major label release and a clip on MTV. His influence on the Queen City’s rock scene is palpable and it’s more than enough to dub the late Joe Bompczyk—who passed away in September—a legend. Lining up to pay tribute at Town Ballroom on Friday (Nov 26), are bandmates, friends, and admirers including Fredmanns Curve, a redux version of The Fems (A Few Good Fems), psychedelic freaks Irving Klaws, garage rock mavens Bernie Kugel’s The Good, George and Sealcats (featuring members of 1980s favorites Paper Faces), Pauline, The Pillagers, Dead Cowboys, Milkfat, and Scottilicious. —donny kutzbach

7pm. Town Ballroom, 681 Main St. (852-3900 / $15 advance, $20 day of show.

Friday, November 26

The Breathing Tree CD Release Show

Just four months after becoming a band, homebred quartet the Breathing Tree released an EP, and they haven’t looked back since. The Buffalo natives come to Soundlab this Friday (Nov 26) for the CD release of their debut album, Let Love Grow. Having been on the scene for only two years, the group’s maturity shines through in their tight instrumentation and poetic lyrics. Comparisons have been made to Mae, but there’s a certain Deathcab for Cutie element in the way the band heightens the energy around lead singer Nicholas Williams’ honest, soft spoken lyrics. While a lot of other bands opt for the “louder faster” approach that drowns out the words, TBT takes a step back from all the noise. You can actually hear what Williams is saying, which only adds to the depth of their sound. Their connection is never more apparent than when they’re on stage, engaging the audience with their emotive, indie-pop style. Joining the Breathing Tree this Friday are Sunday Radio, Inlite, and An American Skyline. —jon wheelock

7pm. Soundlab, 110 Pearl St. (440-5907 / $10 advance, $12 day of show..

Saturday & Sunday, November 27 & 28

The Nutcracker featuring The BPO

Shea’s Performing Arts Center will present Neglia Ballet’s acclaimed Tchaikovsky’s classic holiday ballet, The Nutcracker, featuring the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra this weekend, Saturday (Nov 27) at 7pm and Sunday (Nov 28) at 2pm. This version of The Nutcracker was choreographed, conceived, and produced by Neglia Ballet Artists, which include artistic director Sergio Neglia and executive director Heidi Halt. The BPO will provide live accompaniment, marking the second consecutive year the ballet company and the orchestra have collaborated. “It is wonderful having the opportunity to offer Neglia Ballet Artists production of The Nutcracker in such a beautiful venue as Shea’s with the world-class BPO,” says Halt. “It will be a memorable theatre experience for all ages.” There are 120 dancers involved in this year’s show, including a corps de ballet, soloists, principal professional ballet dancers from all over the world and students from Neglia Conservatory of Ballet and other local dance studios. The principal female dancer in the show is Alexandra Kochis, who is part of the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. She will be playing the ballerina roles of the grownup Marie and the Sugar Plum Fairy. Christopher Budzynski, who is also from the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, is serving as the principal male dancer, dancing the role of Cavalier. As for the character of Drosselmeyer, he will again be played by Irish Classical Theatre’s Vincent O’Neill. The young Marie will also be reprised by 11-year-old Adelaide Clauss, who trains at the Neglia Conservatory of Ballet. All the set designs were created by Lynne Koscielniak, a professor of scenic design at the University of Buffalo, with the help of her crew. —vanessa oswald

7pm. Shea’s Performing Arts Center, 646 Main St. (847-1410 / For tickets, call 1-800-745-3000, go to or to Shea’s Ticket Office. $35-$75.

Saturday, November 20

Barenaked Ladies

Shake off your Thanksgiving weekend food coma/hangover with something familiar yet new. The Barenaked Ladies will be live at the Seneca Allegany Casino this Sunday (Nov 28). The Barenaked Ladies formed in 1988 and have won Canada’s Juno Award seven times. Their latest studio album, All in Good Time, is their 11th release and their first as a four-piece. The band, which now consists of Ed Robertson (guitar/vocals), Jim Creeggan, (bass/vocals), Kevin Hearn (keyboard/guitar/vocals), and Tyler Stewart (drums/vocals), recorded all the new tracks in Toronto. Robertson, one of the founding members and the primary songwriter, explained how this album is different than past Barenaked Ladies albums. “This was a chance for me to shed some of my writing dependencies, both good and bad, and explore new ground. I allowed myself to go places that I might not have in the past. I was more literal at times, and more abstract at others, pushing the self-imposed limits I’d adhered to for too long,” Robertson said. All in Good Time sounds a bit like some of the bands that the Barenaked Ladies have influenced, such as Fountains of Wayne, with some country ballad, power pop, and even some Django Reinhardt influenced gyspy jazz thrown in. The album won’t be in stores until March, so go to their concert to get a sneak peak. Tickets may be purchased at all Seneca Casino box offices,, all Ticketmaster locations, or by phone at 716-852-5000 (USA) or 416-870-8000 (Canada). —jill greenberg

7pm. Seneca Allegany Casino, 777 Seneca Allegany Boulevard, Salamanca, NY, 14779. (1-888-913-3377 / Start at $45.

Wednesday, December 1

Michael Bublé

Everybody’s favorite dashing and handsome crooner, Michael Bublé, will appear live at HSBC Arena on Wednesday (Dec 1). The Canadian pop singer is on tour in support of his latest record, 2009’s Crazy Love, the second Billboard Charts No. 1 album of his career. The record features songs written by such legendary artists as Don Henley, Hoagy Carmichael, and the title track “Crazy Love” by Van Morrison. Of course Bublé puts his own spin on all of the classics on this album with his soulful and dynamic voice. Crazy Love shifts from epic orchestral song structures, like the intense and sexy opening track “Cry Me a River,” to bouncing yet smooth lounge classics like “All of Me,” and finally to the pure pop on his rendition of “Crazy Love.” Bublé offers something that everyone will recognize and sing along to, and his execution of these classic songs, as well as his originals like “Just Haven’t Met You Yet,” is always superb. In October, Bublé re-released Crazy Love as the Crazy Love Hollywood Edition featuring four bonus studio tracks and four live tracks recorded earlier on the “Crazy Love Tour.” Expect an entourage of around 15 musicians, spectacular lights and massive video screens to join Bublé on stage at HSBC Arena. —cory perla

8pm. HSBC Arena, One Seymour H. Knox III Plaza (855-4100 / $49.50-$89.50.

Tuesday, December 2

Big Gigantic

Here is a band that has their priorities straight: making music and putting on a fun and energetic live show. It seems like Big Gigantic, the duo from Boulder, Colorado, made up of drummer Jeremy Salken and producer Dominic Lalli are just in it to have the time of their lives. The group has released two electronic dance albums since 2008, with a sound similar to Bassnectar or Ratatat…and they are all available, for free, on their website. All they ask is that you consider making a donation and, maybe, check them out live. Which wouldn’t be a huge mistake because when this danceable duo takes the stage they are more than dynamic. Their slick synth jams, like “Lucid Dream,” from their latest album, A Place Behind The Moon, are guaranteed to get the crowd moving with extended saxophone jams laid over complex electronic beats. A Place Behind The Moon, produced by electronic mix master Alex B. is not much of a stretch from the band’s debut album, Fire It Up, with the exception of tighter production values and hot new tones. Last time Big Gigantic came to town, they brought a packed, and sweaty party atmosphere to Soundlab. Catch them again at Soundlab on Thursday (Dec 2). —cory perla

10pm. Soundlab, 110 Pearl St. (440-5907 / $15.

Thursday, November 27

Just announced: Snoop Dog

It might be hard being Snoop D-O-double-G, but it might be even harder to catch tickets to his show, just announced at the Rapids Theater. Snoop Dogg will be live at the Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls on January 27. Here is to hoping the bar at the Rapids will be well stocked with gin and OJ. Tickets go on sale Saturday (Nov 27). —herbie timpson

6pm. Rapids Theatre, 1711 Main St. (205-8925 / $TBA.