Smile Politely

The Overture: May 26–31

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

When: Thursday, May 28

What: Beat Kitchen, Me Him and Charlie Miller, and The Mind’s Eye

Where: Canopy Club, 9 p.m., $7

If you’re looking for some sort of funk jam for your Thursday evening, here’s a good place to start. It’s a busy week for Brandon T. Washington, and he gets started with this Beat Kitchen show. He’s also playing a solo show at Bentley’s on Saturday.

When: Thursday, May 28

What: Elsinore, Hopewell, John Hoeffleur, Light Polution, Mordechai in the Mirror

Where: The Highdive, 9 p.m., $8

Hopwell features former Mercury Rev bassist Jason Russo and the group does little to dissuade comparisons to the Rev. Former Beauty Shop frontman John Hoeffleur recently moved back to C-U, so catch him as well in one of his first gigs back in town. For what is supposed to be one of the slowest weeks for live music in town, this show makes us feel like we’ve got a lot to be thankful for. All five — yes FIVE — artists on the bill are awesome. Don’t be silly. Go to this show.

When: Saturday, May 30

What: The Fresh Kills, The Burninators, Augmentor, Clarabelle

Where: 700 W. Illinois, Urbana, 9 p.m., Free (all ages)

Check out a free punk house show from the folks who know how to throw house shows without getting busted. They’re all local bands, and you can’t beat the price.

When: Sunday, May 31

What: Picnic show with Morgan Orion and Madeline Ava

Where: Carle Park, Urbana, 2 p.m.

The Litterbox Collective is just getting its start in C-U, and I believe this is their first show. Hopefully the weather will be nice, and someone will bring some strawberry-rhubarb pie. Nothing better than sitting on the grass, eating some good food, and enjoying an early-summer day with some acoustic music.

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