New York hardcore got a little out of hand in the Seventies, when its practitioners began hitting the gym after band practice. Soon hundreds, if not thousands, of semi-metal acts began bombarding us with "chugga-chugga" breakdowns and deep, guttural screams. NY's Underdog can claim being there when it all began. The band one of the secret heroes from the Seventies is often mentioned in the same breath as the legendary Bad Brains. But by blending melody and just a dollop of reggae into its bone-crunching hardcore, Underdog has always appealed through its genre-leaping aesthetic. The band's full-length, 1979's The Vanishing Point, would cement the group's standing as a seminal act, but reputation does not equal album sales, and Underdog soon dropped off the radar. Though it may have been MIA for the better part of two decades, the beast has finally arisen and is prepared to envelop South Florida.
Underdog performs with 100 Demons, DNME, Sick of Society, Find Them to Fight Them, and others Sunday, January 8, at Churchills, 5501 NE 2nd Ave, Miami. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Admission is $10. Call 305-757-1807.
Dieselboy is considered the godfather of American drum and bass and has helped cultivate the scene since its inception. With a hectic touring schedule and the commercial release of eight mix CDs, Dieselboy has developed a loyal and rabid following across the country. His most recent release, 2004's The Dungeon Masters Guide, crossed dance genres and took serious risks by including remixes of tracks by big-room dance artists such as Tisto, Sasha, and Josh Wink. A recipient of numerous international awards, Dieselboy was also the first drum and bass DJ to chart a single on Billboard's dance chart. In 2006 he plans to release his ninth mix CD and will bring his Planet of the Drums DJ tour to cities across the nation. For the Miami gig, support comes from DJ/veteran UK producer Shy FX, best known for his chart-topping tracks "Shake Ur Body" and "Bambaataa."
Dieselboy performs with Shy FX Saturday, January 7, at Club Space, 34 NE 11th St, Miami. Doors open at 10:00 p.m. Advance tickets are $15; $20 at the door. For more information, call 305-350-1956.
La Penya 305
Whether tossing Fidel around or throwing down espressos, Cuban exiles and politicos have traditionally been the only ones to raise a little hell during the wee hours in Little Havana. But company has arrived in the form of La Penya 305, a raucous gathering of local hip-hop talent that is emerging as ground zero for the area's most talented MCs. The night is the brainchild of Frank Campbell, the Key Records head honcho who felt the need to give up-and-coming bad boys such as Mr. Haka, Salazar, THC, Cubo, Persona, and El Mambia a forum to spew their oftentimes vitriolic Latin-flavored rhymes. Whether it's Haka rapping about an ex still stuck in Cuba, El Mambia unleashing his Gatling gun flow over crunk beats, or Salazar strutting through the crowd, the MCs at Penya are among the most talented (and chronically overlooked) in all of Miami. And while the focus is generally on giving a platform to new talent, there's always the chance Pitbull, Garcia, or Trick Daddy will treat the audience to an impromptu verse or two. By the end of the evening, there are plenty of blurry eyes and twisted tongues.
La Penya 305 is held every Tuesday at Hoy Como Ayer, 2212 SW 8th St, Miami. Cover is $5. Doors open at 8:00 p.m.
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For some the unbridled optimism of the Sixties remains both real and surreal. Take the Kennedys: Dewy-eyed idealists, they freely espouse peace, love, and patchouli as inspiration and affirmation for these otherwise troubled times. No, we don't mean those Kennedys, as in the tragedy-riddled political dynasty once synonymous with the decade itself. These Kennedys are a freewheeling, husband/wife folk-rock duo whose songs beget retro references of another sort jangly guitars, irrepressible hook-filled melodies, and an individual outlook as bright and sunny as a Peter Max poster dappled with Day-Glo. Their latest album, Half a Million Miles, bears testament to the humility and humanity inherent in their Buddhist beliefs, as well as a musical stance that pays homage to such stylistic forebears as Dylan, Donovan, and the Byrds.
The Kennedys perform at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, January 7, at Main Street Café, 128 N Krome Ave, Homestead. Tickets cost $15. Call 305-245-7575.