Critics' Picks: May 8 - 14 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Picks: May 8 - 14

Local shows by Crystal Castles, Macronympha and The Sky Captains of Industry, plus Juliet Simms plays a benefit for Children's Hospital



Toronto's Crystal Castles has mastered the ability to straddle the line between making music that's experimental and irresistible. The strange marriage of poppy and weird comes directly from blending the unique sounds that the two members, producer Ethan Kath and vocalist Alice Glass, bring to the table. While Kath's sensibilities manage to keep each track anchored, Glass' vocals, which range from robotically melodic singing to distorted screams, push the envelope and leave listeners feeling awestruck. On the most recent album, iii, the duo limited themselves to one take per song for a much rawer sound. John Lavanga 7:30 p.m. Mr. Small's Theatre, 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale. $32.50. All ages. 412-821-4447 or

[NOISE] + FRI., MAY 10

It's a rare local appearance tonight for harsh-noise legends Macronympha, despite its local origins. The group is held down mainly by Joe Roemer (also of Casual Approach), with help nowadays from noise artist Hogra, who also plays tonight at Garfield Artworks. Macronympha, known worldwide, has for more than 20 years played the side of harsh noise that holds up the violent, grotesque and depraved as a standard; don't bring Grandma to this one. Dreamweapon and Trogpite also open. Andy Mulkerin 8 p.m. Garfield Artworks, 4931 Penn Ave., Garfield. $5. All ages. 412-361-2262 or


After finishing as a runner-up on the NBC show The Voice, Juliet Simms has begun her foray into the music world with the help of manager CeeLo Green. After putting out her first single, "Wild Child," off her upcoming solo album, she's begun to book dates on the Vans Warped Tour. Before she heads out, she's headlining the second annual CureRock event at Stage AE. The event, which benefits the Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology program at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, will be hosted by Josh & Gab, and will feature a number of local bands, including The Red Western, Joy Ike and Neighbours (which, full disclosure, includes CP music editor Andy Mulkerin). JL 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $25-30. All ages.


You likely haven't heard of The Sky Captains of Industry yet, but you might remember The Meridians, Lindsay Dragan's previous band when she was a student at Pitt. Now she's in New York City full time and playing drums with Sky Captains, a four-piece that does a laid-back version of folktronica, with pretty vocal harmonies, acoustic guitars and synths. Tonight, the band makes its first trip to Dragan's homeland, playing at Howlers with Nathan Zoob and Claire With the Turban. AM 8 p.m. 4509 Liberty Ave., Bloomfield. $5. 412-682-0320 or

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