Smile Politely

The Overture: April 27–May 3

With school, work, family, and hastily installing window air conditioners, who has the time to find out about the best shows happening in Champaign-Urbana? No need to fear, because the editors here at Smile Politely have taken care of it. Here are the must-see shows of the week:

When: Monday April 27

What: Junior Boys w/ Max Tundra and Mordechai in the Mirror

Where: The Canopy Club; $15 at the door

As one of the premier electronica artists touring today, Junior Boys have been building their reputation on stellar album releases and throwing a party in the live setting more than putting on a rock show. Mondays are decidely not for partying usually, but if you are feeling up for it, these Canadian “boys” are some of the best in the business. Max Tundra and Mordechai in the Mirror open the show.

When: Wednesday April 29

What: Eric Church

Where: The Canopy Club; $16 in advance / $18 at the door

Country music doesn’t get enough time under the lights in the live setting in Champaign-Urbana. Part of it is that there isn’t much of an “indie” touring circuit like there is in rock music, but this Wednesday, an up and coming star named Eric Church will be making a pit stop in what seems to be the road to some real fame and fortune. Is it good? Make the call yourself. Jonathon Singleton and The Grove opens.

When: Thursday April 30

What: Kilroy et al

Where: Courtyard Cafe

Very little information exists about this show… oh wait… it’s at the Courtyard. What a shocker. But what we do know is that Ed Rice, who performs as Kilroy et al is one of the finest new songwriters that C-U has to call its own. Watch out for his upcoming Tour Diaries on Smile Politely next month.

When: Thursday April 30

What: Alpha Mile with Terminus Victor and Backyard Shark; $5

Where: Mike N’ Molly’s

Tim Lash — why have you forsaken us? Here you join HUM as a 12-year old boy and put everyone in Champaign-Urbana to shame with your emo licks and introspective attitude. Then, you release arguably the greatest album in the history of the community under the moniker Glifter, only to never perform live like an asshole. Now you re-emerge with Alpha Mile — the loudest band in C-U since Mark Baldwin killed a bird with his amps turned up to eleven. What gives?

When: Saturday, May 2

What: Four Walls and a Roof present: Rock for a Refuge Benefit Show

Where: Westminister Hall (McKinley Foundation) on 5th and Daniel, 7 to 11 p.m., $5

FWAAR is trying to raise $5,000 by the end of May to contribute to a women’s shelter in Ecuador, and this benefit show is part of that effort. In addition to free food, henna tattoos, and a live auction, there will be “bellydancers, rock bands, folk-punk, Spanish guitar, bboys, modern dance, henna tattoos, rappers, spoken word, breakdancers, and a ukuele!” Check out this announcement for a more complete list of performers.

When: Saturday, May 2

What: Bottle Rockets

Where: Highdive, Doors at 7 p.m., Band plays from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., $10

Here’s your chance to be on the Bottle Rockets live DVD, which will be filmed exclusively during this concert. The band has a new album, Lean Forward, coming out on Bloodshot in August-ish, and the DVD will be released afterward. No recording devices are going to be allowed into the ‘Dive, unless you’re real sneaky, I guess.

Even if you’re not a big fan of the band’s Southern rock-tinged work on album, their live show brings out the band’s Crazy Horse-era Neil Young influences to spectacular effect.

Want to go for free? Click here to find out how to win a pair of tickets, and stay tuned to Smile Politely later in the week for an interview with Rockets frontman Brian Henneman.

When: Sunday, May 3

What: Dylan Mini-Cover Fest

Where: Exile on Main Street, 12 noon, Free

Details are pretty scarce at this point (OverUC promises an announcement today), but the list of artists on openingbands is pretty impressive: Brian McGovern, New Ruins, Jake Fleischli (of Tractor Kings), The Girls Next Door, Sunset Stallion, Zmick, Ryan Groff and Cole Rabenort, Post Historic, Lucky Mulholland, Stan McConnell, Jonathon Childers, Angie Heaton, Matt Klomparens, Milt the Stilt, and Carl Hauck, all covering Mr. Zimmerman’s classics.

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