Critics' Picks: May 29 - June 3 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Picks: May 29 - June 3

Local shows by Jen Chapin, The Head and the Heart, Eyehategod and Saintseneca


Jen Chapin and Pittsburgh's own The Damaged Pies will share the stage tonight for a cause. Chapin's 2013 album Reckoning showcases her Broadway-worthy vocals on all 11 tracks; she and The Damaged Pies are both members of the Artists Against Hunger and Poverty program, which enlists artists to raise funds and awareness of these issues. The show tonight at Club Café, which the New York singer (and daughter of singer Harry Chapin) headlines, is a benefit for WhyHunger, an organization set to end hunger and poverty by connecting people to nutritious, affordable food. Zach Brendza 7 p.m. 56 S. 12th St., South Side. $10. 412-431-4950 or


Sometimes a place brings a band together. In the case of Seattle's The Head and the Heart, it was a pub. The six musicians were playing open mics at Conor Byrne pub, in Ballard, a neighborhood in northwestern Seattle. Those pub performances led to their formation as a band and the early material that would become its 2011 self-titled debut album, released on hometown label Sub Pop Records. Nowadays, the indie-folk group is playing bigger gigs: Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza and the like — a bit of a change from the Ballard bar where it began. The band plays Stage AE tonight with Lucius. ZB 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $25-$28. 412-229-5483 or


No one does psychic-pain-fueled rage quite like Eyehategod. And the New Orleans-based sludge pioneers have always had plenty to be pissed about: Over the last 25 years, the members have dealt with drug problems, incarceration, Hurricane Katrina and — most painfully — the death of their drummer last August. Though the band's new record, its first release in 14 years, is relatively polished (frontman Mike Williams' vocals are uncharacteristically decipherable), fans need not worry. Venom still pulses through EHG's veins, filthy as ever. Catch the band Monday, with Ringworm, Enabler and others, at the Rex Theater. Margaret Welsh 7 p.m. 1602 E. Carson St., South Side. $18-20. 412-381-6811 or


Columbus' Saintseneca is like a chameleon; on any verse, it could be a different shade of itself. The folk-flavored rock band is led by singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Zac Little. Growing up in Appalachia, he brought a background in folk and mountain music to the band. But playing in the DIY Columbus scene with punk and hardcore bands helped crank up the tempo of Saintseneca's music, the pace of which is occasionally frantic. Its latest release, Dark Arc, has received a lot of attention, with the song "Visions" best showcasing its folk and frantic sides. The band plays Brillobox tonight with Memory Map and Locks and Dams. ZB 9 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $10. 412-621-4900 or

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