Those Far Out Arrows, Jack McLaughlin tonight; Bull Nettles (album release show) Saturday; live shows are back!

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 9:44 am May 28, 2021
Those Far Out Arrows at Slowdown Jr., Aug. 8, 2017. The band plays tonight at The Sydney.

Oh my gawd, live shows are back!

They’ve actually been back for awhile — most venues reopened weeks ago — but this weekend is the first time there are shows I actually want to write about.

As we all know, the city dropped its mask mandate earlier this week; and while people no longer are required to wear masks in businesses, each establishment will have its own masking policy. I spoke to one local venue owner who said he’s taking the mask signs down at all his clubs, if only because most restaurants and other establishments are. That said, each club will be different, and I’ll have one with me when I go out this weekend.

And I have no doubt people still will wear masks in the clubs. I went to HyVee the other day to pick up a six-pack and about half the shoppers wore masks. It’ll be a hard habit to break for some.

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Tonight at The Sydney it’s the long-talked-about return of Those Far Out Arrows. The band released an album last year called Fill Yer Cup that includes the weird, funky single “Snake in My Basement” that’s become something of an underground hit among a number of my friends.

Also on tonight’s bill at The Sydney is the soulful hip-hop of Marcey Yates. This gig has been sold out for a couple weeks, but I’m told by a little birdie that a few tickets will be available early at the door. $10, 10 p.m.

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Also tonight, singer/songwriter/rockstar Jack McLaughlin is headlining at The Slowdown (on the big stage!) with Bokr Tov and Magū. McLaughlin has a new track out called “Interpret It All,” that features Mitch Gettman on guitar, Nate Van Fleet on drums and Dan Artz on bass. Says McLaughlin, “I bought and renovated a house by O’Leavers during the shut down and built a recording studio in the basement….that’s where we are at in the video.” Like I said, this is a main room show (thanks to COVID). $10, 8 p.m.

Also tonight, Township & Range plays at The Down Under with Eddie Spencer. It’s a free show that begins at 9 p.m. Here’s where you can point and laugh at me: I didn’t know that Travis Sing was the frontman in T&R.

In fact, Sing (whose performance name is Travis Linn) is also the frontman in Bull Nettles, a new “cow punk” trio in the vein of Frontier Trust with Doug Kabourek on drums and “Steve” on bass (I don’t know who Steve is, but he’s good). Travis Sing is great on lead vocals and guitar, and their new EP, The Last Days of Empire, blew me away. This is the rural punk-ish album with a political edge you’ve been waiting for.

I really wanted this record to come out in the late summer/early fall last year to coincide with the election, but obviously that didn’t happen for numerous reasons,” Sing said. “I lean left, but I think there’s plenty on the left to criticize, too. This record is likely to piss off people on both sides.”

Yeah, there’s a Frontier Trust flair to the EP, but this one also will appeal to fans of Filter Kings and Social Distortion. The band is celebrating the EP’s release tonight at Dr. Jack’s Drinkery, 3012 No. 102nd St. (102nd and Maple (the old Brass Knocker)). Also on the bill are The Mudpuddles and Danny Burns. $5, 8 p.m.

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That’s all I got. If you go out this weekend, be safe, and don’t be afraid to wear a mask if you want to. Staying alive is pretty cool.

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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 © 2021 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.