Smile Politely

The Overture: May 29–June 4

WHAT: Justin Rondon, Emily Otnes

WHERE: The Clark Bar (free)

WHEN: Tuesday, May 29th at 7 p.m.

The Clark Bar’s next installment in singer-songwriter shows includes these two locals. Emily Otnes has a little folky-acoustic thing going on here, with mixes of inspiration from singer-songwriters of this genre. Check out Rondon’s tracks below or Otnes’ Bandcamp as well.


WHAT: Midstress, Robots Counterfeiting Money, Bruiser Queen

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($5)

WHEN: Thursday, May 31st at 9 p.m.

Midstress is embarking on their first ever tour (surprisingly), and they are doing it with Robots Counterfeiting Money over the course of the next week or so. We’ll have a more in-depth look at their tour and what they have to say about it later this week, but for now you can get started with this show at Cowboy on Thursday. 


WHAT: Comfort Food, Wei Zhongle, Dr. Responsible

WHERE: Mike ‘N Molly’s ($5)

WHEN: Thursday, May 31st at 10 p.m.

Comfort Food just dropped their new EP (below) a short while back, and “loop/ambient/rock/beats” of Dr. Responsible and Carbondale’s Wei Zhongle join in for this one at Mike ‘N Molly’s. Wei Zhongle is a project of former Urbana resident Rob Jacob, so it doesn’t seem like that group will be far from home even though they don’t call C-U home anymore. 



WHAT: Sierra Leone’s Refugee Allstars, Rhythm Manding

WHERE: The Highdive ($16 advance/$18 door)

WHEN: Friday, June 1st at 7:30 p.m.

Sierra Leone’s Refugee Allstars make their way to The Highdive on Friday in what is sure to be a pretty wild performance. They are on the heels of releasing their newest record, Radio Salone (dropped back in late April). Produced by Victor Alxelrod, who’s had some experience with some pretty noteworthy acts in his time (Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings, Amy Winehouse). Price point for this show is a bit high, but it will probably be worth it considering these types of acts don’t come through C-U very often. 

Mike ‘N Molly’s ($13) — Saturday, June 2nd at 9 p.m.

Rocky Votolato is taking his new record Television of Saints out on the road for the next few weeks after its release in early April. He’ll be in Indy the night before and St. Louis the night after, so this is your shot to see him before he’s a few hundred miles away. Visit his Facebook page if you’re going to buy tickets to this one so you can get a copy of his new record for a discounted price. We’ll have a more in-depth look at this show later in the week for what you should watch for on Saturday. Votolato’s played C-U within the last year, but he’s still one of my recommendations for a show to catch this weekend.


WHAT: The Thin Souls, The Keylocks, Ator Forty

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($5)

WHEN: Saturday, June 2nd at 9 p.m.

They’re not our favorite band yet; that category is a tough one to crack for us, but this could be your new favorite according to The Keylocks. They are playing their first show in some time, so you can expect some new tracks from those guys. Joining them are The Thin Souls and Ator Forty (Ator 40 according to the show poster, but it’s a new project so we’ll see what they go with, I guess).


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