CATE LE BON, KEY LOSERS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Read our article on Cate Le Bon.
THE DARKNESS, FOXY SHAZAM, CROWN JEWEL DEFENSE
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) "Hilarity" may not be the first adjective you associate with glam rock, but England's the Darkness does it right. Best known for their barn-burning falsetto hit "I Believe in a Thing Called Love," the Darkness rocks the fuck out with expert precision, while having tons of squealy fun. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY
In a lot of circles, the Darkness are kind of a joke band. They're much too flamboyant for serious rockers to get behind. But I believe if you listen with the same ears you use when listening to bands like Queen, Turbonegro, or Van Halen, you'll find they're nothing to snicker at. Yes, like those bands, the Darkness have lyrics that are ridiculous and silly, and personas that can be hard to take seriously. These are non-issues. Just because the Darkness know how to have fun doesn't mean they can't write killer rock-and-roll hooks and boundless, beautiful ballads. Yes, Justin Hawkins' use of falsetto is, to say the least, heavy-handed at times, but if I could sing like that, I would flaunt it too. The bottom line is having a good time, and thankfully the Darkness have returned to bring good times back to rock and roll. ARIS WALES
CRAIG FINN, MOUNT MORIAH
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Craig Finn, the Hold Steady's charismatic frontman, has gone solo and released a new album, Clear Heart Full Eyes. It isn't bad, but it doesn't grab you, either. It lacks the Hold Steady's hooks and Lifter Puller's humor. Finn is a great lyricist and storyteller (albeit a bit of a repetitive one), but musically Clear Heart Full Eyes falls short compared to his past efforts. Still, Finn is a fantastic performer—engaging, fun, funny—so tonight's show will still be worth attending, even if his first solo attempt leaves you wanting more. Let's hope the songs will shine a little brighter in a live setting. Or, at the very least, we can cross our fingers for a few Hold Steady tunes in the setlist. MEGAN SELING