What better way seize the seasonal spirit than by celebrating punk’s patron saint—Joe Strummer—and contributing to his namesake charity, which, naturally, helps young, broke musicians make their mark. The lineup’s strong, highlighted by Taggart, a local fixture harking back to underground rock’s golden age during the half-decade leading up to Nevermind. The guitars are sweet and crunchy like Super Sugar Crisp, purveying tasty hooks coated in distortion and jagged edges with gruff, half-yelped vocals reminiscent of Eric Bachmann (Archers of Loaf). Versatile trio Mean Streets’ medium is punk rock in the vein of acts like the Adicts and Toy Dolls. It’s catchy, boisterous stuff you might describe as pop-punk before Blink-182 came along. The Successful Failures specialize in blending melancholy jangle pop and alt-rock fury. The bill’s filled out by the Groovement’s frontman Leland Plumridge, bloozy classic rockers the Future Unwritten, and high-energy pop-punkers Tonight We Strike.
Thurs., Dec. 22, 8pm. $10. With Taggart, Mean Streets, the Successful Failures, the Future Unwritten, Leland Plumridge, Tonight We Strike, Scarier Area + Lust2Love. North Star Bar, 27th and Poplar sts. 215.787.0488. northstarbar.com
PW's Music Issue 2014