The Five Best Shows in San Francisco This Week

Categories: Show To Know

Zion I performs Friday at DNA Lounge
Ital @ Public Works, Thursday, Dec. 20
Daniel Martin-McCormick's musical résumé encompasses a mélange of guises and styles -- including post-hardcore freakouts, scorched post-punk dub, and lo-fi disco -- and several monikers, including the local band Mi Ami and the more dance-focused output of Ital. His most recent Ital LP, Dream On, concentrates on murky, chopped-up deep house and funky, distressed techno. There's the knotted, white noise-swept "Despot" and "Boi," which transition into the savagely processed "Eat Shit (Waterfalls Mix)" and the sputtering digital detritus of "Enrique." Deep within all of these are subtle melodies and dense, percussive grooves that are sure to fill a drone-receptive dancefloor. -- Tony Ware

Zion I @ DNA Lounge, Friday, Dec, 21
The Mayan calendar ends on Dec. 21, 2012, which still leaves a few conspiracy theorists out there wondering if it also spells the last day of humanity. Just in case, South Bay production company Euphoric Styles hosts a party called "The End" on this fateful evening. This blowout of a night features a wide range of artists, including headliner Zion I, the adventurous Oakland hip-hop duo that debuted in 2000 and most recently dropped an edgy album called ShadowBoxing back in October. Don't be scared if you see an adorable purple Godzilla experimenting with electronic beats -- that's just the beloved local producer Mochipet. Stephan Jacobs, Candyland, Robotic Pirate Monkey, and many others will be also on hand to help you party like life is going out of style. -- Tamara Palmer

Churches @ Bottom of the Hill, Saturday, Dec. 22
Band break-ups are not always completely sad. The dissolution of local indie-rock fave Port O'Brien paved the way for two promising new guitar-based groups, the angstier WATERS (featuring Van Pierszalowski) and Caleb Nichols' more melancholy, melodic Churches, which shares personnel with Rogue Wave, among other outfits. Nichols grapples with the civil rights struggles of gay couples on the band's soaring new single, "Lovelife," celebrating the real, committed relationships that still somehow aren't recognized by our state government. The B-side of Churches' latest single is the gorgeous, delicate "Save Me," whose slowly swirling guitar fuzz makes for a fitting come-down after the A-side's heights. Churches celebrate their new 7-inch with a release show this week -- we encourage Port O'Brien fans still in mourning to attend. -- Ian S. Port

Marcel Vogel @ 222 Hyde, Saturday Dec. 22
A label like Lumberjacks in Hell seems designed to conjure false associations. Though its name might bring to mind a bunch of bearded metal wizards, in reality this is an obscure disco label that specializes in a raw style of reediting pioneered by house music godfather Ron Hardy. At the helm is Dutchman Marcel Vogel, a dedicated DJ and producer who's extended a transatlantic hand to those artists in Chicago still keeping this art form alive. Pressing up tracks by underground favorites like Jamie 3:26, Rahaan, and Boogie Nite (whose Chaka Khan- and Mickey Mouse-themed "Earth 2 Mickey" has been blowing our minds lately), Vogel has a unique taste that also informs his old-school-indebted DJ sets. Catch his San Francisco debut this weekend. -- Derek Opperman

Thee Oh Sees, the Mallard, Warm Soda, and more @ The Chapel, Thursday, Dec. 20
What's that? A bunch of great local rock bands playing for a good holiday cause? Yes, kiddes: Castle Face Records -- the label of Thee Oh Sees' John Dwywer, among others -- is putting on a benefit this week for the S.F. Coalition for the Homeless, featuring, of course, Thee Oh Sees and their promising proteges/Castle Face recruits the Mallard and Warm Soda. It's sure to be a night of sweaty, stripped-down rock 'n' roll. It's also a benefit -- the sliding scale for tickets begins at $15 -- and a coat drive, so bring something warm to give away. It's cold out there on the city streets these days, and rock fans shouldn't be the only ones getting good and warm. -- Ian S. Port


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Location Info



DNA Lounge

375 11th St., San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

Bottom of the Hill

1233 17th St., San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

222 Hyde - CLOSED

222 Hyde St., San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

Public Works

161 Erie, San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

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