ryan’s forecast

by Ryan Snyder

upcoming shows you should check out


There comes a time in everyone’s life when they realize that the favorite band of their youth, one they might’ve lost touch with for a period, has become not much more than a nostalgia act. For late Gen- Xers, 311 is likely that band. It wasn’t hard to fall in love with Music and Grassroots in the early ‘90s. The Omaha band’s first two LPs were a welcome, sunny alternative to the menacing grunge coming out of Seattle at the time, and it was uncommonly satisfying when their eponymous release went pop and still sounded good. After that, however, a severe drop-off in quality begins. The 2000s for them were a wasteland of sub-mediocre releases pandering to a post-rap-rock crowd that never recaptured the punk vitality of their formative releases. Fortunately, when the band comes to the Greensboro Coliseum’s Special Events Center on Tuesday, Nov. 29, their setlist will likely sport a healthy dose of that nostalgia. “Do You Right,” “My Stoney Baby,” “Homebrew” et al have all been a part of recent set lists. Phunk Junkeez frontman DJ Soulman will open and the music starts at 8 p.m.


It’s not only store displays and movie theatre marquees that seem to change while people are gorging on Thanksgiving turkey and football; there’s also a full slate of holiday music performances waiting on the other side. There’s the tacky (Trans-Siberian Orchestra) and the sentimental (Riders In the Sky), but then there’s the flat-out breathtaking.

One of those arrives in Durham this Tuesday, Nov. 29, as Aaron Neville brings his knee-buckling vibrato to the Carolina Theatre. It’s been said that he could sing the phonebook and make it sound great, and the third Neville Brother’s Christmas catalog includes touches of the traditional, the transformative (Dr. John’s “Such A Night”), the regional (“Louisiana Christmas Day”) and the original, all backed by powerhouse NOLA players. Neville’s performance is set to begin at 8 p.m. and tickets range from $42 to $52.


There was a time when you could see the band that would become indie-rockers Future Islands co-headlining a show at a burrito joint that also featured ex-outside Dan Deacon crawling around on the floor and compelling others to do the same. Art Lord & the Self Portraits were a staple of the North Carolina music scene while slumming gigs at the Soccer Mom house and Flying Salsa, while living in the nearly flooded out neighborhood along the Tar River. Now the core trio is one of the most written-about bands in indie rock and also creators of one of the finest albums of the year. Future Islands’ On the Water doesn’t possess the ultra rough bedroom quality of Ideas for Housecrafts and there’s no fake German accents, but it is the maturation point of a ridiculously talented and creative group of songwriters and performers. And they’re insanely good live. Future Islands will perform at the Cat’s Cradle on Sunday with Ed Schrader’s Music Beat and Lonnie Walker. Tickets are $12 in advance and $14 at the door, but don’t count on them making it that far.