Glorious weekend! Herewith, our critics' top event picks:
Cher Horowitz: Great handle, impossible to Google. But despite the fact that this all-girl punk quartet shares its name with the much-more-famous Clueless heroine (and onetime idol of fifth-grade girls everywhere), it's well worth whatever keyword acrobatics it takes to track 'em down: The band's 2011 EP, the brilliantly-named Babes! Snax! Jamz! Outfits! Astrology! is a rollicking, reverb-drenched ride through the high school experience you never had; or like what might've happened if the fictional Cher Horowitz had gotten mixed up with a bunch of riot grrls in freshman gym instead of Dionne and Tai — or, maybe just Nineties pop-culture nostalgia done exactly right. That is, with fuzzed-our guitars, unrelenting drums, half-yelled lyrics, and a palpable (if snarly) kind of giddiness — neither too ironic nor too reverent, stuck in the delicious somewhere between complete seriousness and all-out joking and wisely employing the character less as a conscription than as a jumping-off point to sing about all kinds of problems (high school-specific or not). The show goes down at 924 Gilman (924 Gilman St., Berkeley), which means there's a decent chance the Gilman audience will be too young to get it, but as Horowitz herself would say, What-ever! On Sunday, Apr. 29 with Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits, American Splits, Jeff Rowe, Boxglove, and Criticism as part of a benefit for El Sobrante's Hansel and Gretel cooperative preschool. 3 p.m., $5-$10 sliding scale. 924Gilman.org— Ellen Cushing
He may be petulant and pottymouthed, but there's little debate that KMEL Top 10 Freshman emeritus Roach Gigz is one of the best rappers operating in the Bay Area right now. And were it not for his utterly infuriating lyrics, he might be hailed as the best, bar none. Roach tends to fixate on personal vices and ineluctable pleasures — he's a drug user, loafer, moocher, manipulator, and indefatigable womanizer — but he'll occasionally let slip a bit of social commentary. It's crazy how the city change/I don't see nobody from the city, man, Roach raps, waxing philosophical about gentrification and San Francisco's burgeoning tech economy in the song "Gina," which is otherwise about some girl with a booty. Lyrics notwithstanding, Roach has a near-perfect sense of rhythm. He syncopates lines, raps words as triplet figures, and always stays in the pocket of the beat. In a genre that tends to privilege style over substance, he'll have amazing longevity. At Oakland Metro Operahouse (630 3rd St., Oakland) on Saturday, Apr. 28. 8 p.m., $12, $15. OaklandMetro.org — Rachel Swan Plus...
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