Sons of O’Leaver’s, Cowboy Indian Bear, Floating Opera tonight; Mynabirds, So-So Sailors, Make Believe showcase Saturday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , — @ 2:07 pm November 16, 2012

by Tim McMahan,

Well it sounds like The Boss laid another big, fat, stinkin’ turd on the Century Link Arena stage last night…

Relax. I’m just kidding. I woke at around 3 a.m. last night after falling asleep on the couch and read a handful of reviews of last night’s Springsteen show, and it sounds like he uncorked a classic, with a set list that included a crapload of songs off Nebraska. Check out reviews by OWH and LJS. What, no “Jungleland?”No “Rosalita”? No “Blinded by the Light”?

This show obviously was special, but after three strikes at Century Link/Qwest, I’m over arena shows. What shows would I still lay out cash to attend at the CLink if they came through? It’s a short list: Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Neil Young, The Cure, U2, Rolling Stones, Depeche Mode, Steely Dan, Simon & Garfunkel, Peter Gabriel, Prince, Beck, The Cars…

It starts getting hazy after that. Who else? Talking Heads? The Police? R.E.M.? David Bowie? They don’t tour anymore. Looking over the list, it’s amazing how almost all the bands are legacy acts. Today’s modern arena bands — bands on the Billboard charts — are almost all teeny-bopper acts (Beiber, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Pink), middle-of-the-road snoozers (Adele, Maroon 5, Bruno Mars) or country bumpkins (Jason Aldean, Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood). It’s kind of sad, but that’s the way it’s been since the ’90s, starting with the rise of the boy bands. Other than Radiohead (whose peak was a decade ago), have any artistically credible arena bands emerged?

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Let’s get to the weekend.

Tonight at fabulous O’Leaver’s it’s the long-awaited return of Sons of O’Leaver’s! The Boss could only dream of playing the hits that these guys play. Headlining is Des Moines band North of Grand, who’s latest album, A Farewell to Rockets (Brolester Records), is pretty damn good, too. In the first slot, Chromafrost. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, over at The Barley Street Tavern, Lawrence band Cowboy Indian Bear returns with Cedar Falls band Har-Di-Har, and our very own John Klemmensen doing a solo set, while Blue Bird headlines. That’s four bands for $5. Show starts at 9. Check out this alternate version of CIB’s “The Hunter and the Hunted” (click below, then click again):

Cowboy Indian Bear, “The Hunter and the Hunted”

Just four bands? The Side Door Lounge beats that count with five tonight, headlined by Lincoln ensemble Floating Opera. I can’t says I’ve heard of the rest. See the lineup here.

Mynabirds, "Body of Work" 7-inch, (Saddle Creek, 2012)

Mynabirds, “Body of Work” 7-inch, (Saddle Creek, 2012)

Tomorrow night’s big show (Saturday) is The Mynabirds at The Slowdown. Laura and the band are playing their last local show of the year in support of the release of their new Saddle Creek 7-inch “Body of Work” b/w “In the Mouths of Wolves.” I’m told the artwork folds up origami-style into a horse. Judging by the video, below, it’s super easy. Opening is the always amazing So-So Sailors and D.C. band Deleted Scenes. $8, 9 p.m.

Also tomorrow night (Saturday) is the Make Believe Records Showcase at The Waiting Room. The lineup: Lightning Bug, Snake Island, Bear Stories, Conchance, Black Jonny Quest, Dirty Diamonds, Dojorok, Sam Martin & Kethro — all for a free. That’s right, no cover. Show starts at 9 p.m.

Finally, Sunday night Frontier Ruckus plays at The Waiting Room with Brad Hoshaw. $8, 9 p.m.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at — an online music magazine that includes feature interviews, reviews and news. The focus is on the national indie music scene with a special emphasis on the best original bands in the Omaha area. Copyright © 2012 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.