Smile Politely

The Overture: October 20 – October 26, 2008

With work, family and judging your neighbors based on yard sign political endorsements, 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:

Wednesday October 22: GWAR – Canopy Club, 8 p.m., $18

GWAR, as founding member Dave Brockie (also known as Oderus Urungus), doesn’t stand for “Great White Aryan Race” or “God What an Awful Racket,” it simply means GWAR, which stands for an absolutely unforgettable concert. In full costume, GWAR takes the stage as demonic warriors bent on melting your face with some good, old fashioned thrash metal. Oh, and after they melt your face, they’ll probably spray it if with large amounts of fake blood and semen. Check out this legendary band on Wednesday and be sure to bring a poncho.

Thursday October 23: Elsinore, Oh My God, Post Historic – Cowboy Monkey, 9:30 p.m., $7

If you’ve been meaning to catch an Elsinore show, you better catch this one. Without another show scheduled in the area until New Year’s Eve, Thursday night is the only chance to get your Elsinore fix for quite a while. With high energy pop and Ryan Groff’s amazing set of pipes, the Champaign-Urbana band knows how to work a crowd. Also playing is Chicago’s Oh My God and another great local band, Post Historic.

Thursday October 23: The Championship, Tractor Kings, New Ruins – Mike N’ Molly’s, Tractor Kings, New Ruins, 10 p.m., $4

If you like a little twang in your rock, than Mike N’ Molly’s is your place on Thursday. Milwaukee’s The Championship is stopping through town and bringing their rustic, haunting folk rock with them. Drawing from classic Americana, The Championship writes songs reminiscent of old country classics with the haunting atmosphere of Springsteen’s Nebraska. Alt-country outfit, Tractor Kings and New Ruins will also perform

Friday October 24: Ghoultown – Cowboy Monkey, 10 p.m., $5

Ghoultown is the kind of band Sergio Leone, Oscar A. Romero and Rob Zombie would form if they were all into rockabilly. Playing what is apparently called “horrorpunk” or “hellbilly,” Ghoultown blends heavy metal, punk, rockabilly and country into one fist-pumping, distortion-laden beast. Inspired by horror films, Ghoultown has also been featured in numerous (generally zombie-related) movie soundtracks. Celebrate Halloween early by checking out a scary awesome show.

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