Beggar's Banquet

Cheesy Mick Jagger impersonation contest parallels current state of the Stones

If the night recalled the Stones' glory era of the '60s, it was most inadvertently. As a friend said to me at one point, "This is rougher than Vietnam." Maybe that's what made it such a baby-boomer love fest.

Three-Hour Cruise: The Grievous Angels are known for their funky Halloween-costume themes. During the years, they've dressed as the Village People, as a group of Unabombers and even as a '70s edition of the Philadelphia 76ers. But even by the honky-tonk twangsters' standards, this Halloween was inspired. For their October 31 show at Nita's Hideaway in Tempe, all five band members donned the outfits of characters from Gilligan's Island. Lead singer Russell Sepulveda played Gilligan, while steel-guitar master Jon Rauhouse dressed as the Skipper ("'cause he's the fattest," according to Sepulveda). Perhaps the most impressive sacrifice in the name of art was made by drummer Jess Navarro, who shaved his legs so he could be an authentic Mary Ann.

Imperial Pop: The power-pop heroes of Autumn Teen Sound have decided to change their name, with the thought of increasing their viability to notoriously skittish labels. The band debuted its new name, Sugar High, and some new material at Hollywood Alley in Mesa on November 7. The members are currently shopping a sharp four-song tape.

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Who's in town: Punk and trash-rock fans have an embarrassment of riches to look forward to with Nita's Hideaway's "Desert Trash Blast" on November 14 and 15. Of special local interest is Jeff Dahl, an Arizonan with an incredibly extensive rock resume. Punk fans will best remember him as the lead singer of the L.A. hard-core band Angry Samoans, although many know him from a more recent spate of solo releases on Triple X Records. All in all, nine bands will take the stage during the weekend, including the hard-rocking, perfectly named Lazy Cowgirls.

Also, indie-rock fans shouldn't miss Modest Mouse on Friday, November 14, at Boston's in Tempe, with Carissa's Weird, and the Les Payne Product.

--Gilbert Garcia

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