Sactown is where the buffalo roam this weekend – good thing they’ll be roaming indoors and away from the triple digit heat we’ve got on tap.
Heat is much easier to tolerate when it’s caused by amps, isn’t it?
The White Buffalo – One look at this mountain of a man and his lumberjack façade, and you’d think he’d be more comfortable with a blue ox than an acoustic axe, but sometimes a snarly sweet tune comes from the place you’d least expect it – even one that looks like Eddie Vedder and Mic Foley’s overgrown love baby. Jake Smith (a.k.a. the White Buffalo himself) sports a saccharine gruff in his voice, like a barstool troubadour’s musings on Tom Waits, with an alluring emotional embrace that’s impossible to hide from (much like a William Elliott Whitmore). Ranging from dusty, rambling highway hymns to weeping-in-the-rain ballads, Smith’s auspice is one of a bygone era where there was no stigma behind cheap whiskey and loose women, but you can’t help but think that most gals would still freely take him home to mom to go antiquing and talk about the simple things in life over a chardonnay. Local rock fireballers Prieta join to lend their support, as will youthful upstarts the Kelps in one of the tastiest bills of the month on the Old I’s calendar. 9 p.m. Friday. Old Ironsides, 1901 10th St. $7. 21+. www.theoldironsides.com.
Admiral Radley – Call Admiral Radley a “supergroup” if you must; it just stings to use that term in reference to indie bands. Still, the comingling of the creative tandem of Jason Lytle and Aaron Burtch of famed Modesto outfit Grandaddy and Ariana Murray and Aaron Espinoza of the equally snazzy Earlimart makes for a combustive four piece trying out a few new things. Having come together fairly quickly, their debut album “I Heart California” is a bit of a tongue-in-cheek ode to the Golden State (like the Mother Hips drinking Boone’s and making fun of kids with cell phones and dogs in their purses), loaded with atmospheric guitar hooks, playful electronic effects and a sneaky labyrinth of explorative songwriting. Dare we say, if you dig Grandaddy, AdRad will light you up like a Christmas tree. With Jared Dreams and Sea of Bees. 9 p.m. Friday. Blue Lamp, 1400 Alhambra Blvd. $10. $21+. www.myspace.com/bluelamp.
Leon Russell – Solo artist. Session musician to the stars. Enigmatic figure. ZZ Top’s grandfather? OK, that last one isn’t true, but you’d think so with the beard! The legendary Leon Russell boasts a list of artists that he’s played and recorded with that is, well, quite frankly, stupid! From the Rolling Stones to George Harrison, Joe Cocker, the Band, Eric Clapton, the Byrds, the Beach Boys, Willie Nelson, Elton John and Lady Gaga (just seeing if you’re paying attention), Russell’s demand as a session musician on the keys in nearly unparalleled, and he’s further proceeded to cement his name in the annals of music history with his own lengthy discography. In short, you’ll find him around just about every corner in the halls of the last half-century of American music. 8 p.m. Thursday. Harlow’s, 2708 J St. $40 ($60 front row). 21+. www.harlows.com.
The Secretions – The weatherman says it’s going to be 99 degrees on Saturday, and you know that in this town, that temp will peak right around 5 p.m. Guess what…the Press Club has air conditioning, they have tallboys of PBR, and they’ve also got the Secretions, one of Sactown’s tried and true punk bands that’s been doing it the old fashioned way for years; loud, fast and B.S.-free. Off With Their Heads and In Defense join the afternoon party. 5 p.m. Saturday Press Club, 21st and P St. $5. 21+.