TVD’s 9:30 Club December Concert Preview

Seriously readers, how is it already December? Well, it’s time to celebrate two things, aside from the standard holidays this month.

The first thing to celebrate is the new partnership between our good friends at the 9:30 Club and U Street Music Hall, a venue created by DJs for DJs. This unholy alliance seems so wrong but feels so right! The venues will be cross-booking acts, with UHall booking acts in 9:30 Club’s Backbar, and 9:30 Club presenting shows at UHall.

The second thing to celebrate is, of course, another slew of awesome bands coming to the city, and tickets to be given away for each of these shows.

VNV Nation, Tues 12/6

Victory Not Vengeance is idea behind the British electronic duo known as VNV Nation. Ronan Harris and Mark Jackson have released eight studio albums since their debut in 1995. Their most recent release, Automatic, premiered #1 on iTunes Canada, and in the top 10 for the band’s new homeland, Germany. Ronan’s relatable lyrics and Jackson’s sound-scape beats form dynamic energy that really capture a listener and take them on a journey through synthetic dance melodies. Kick off December with the right attitude, like that of the band—“one should strive to achieve, not sit in bitter regret”—at the VNV Nation show on Tuesday. Fans should maybe hold tight today… Hint.

Beady Eye, Thurs 12/8

Not sure who Beady Eye is? Hint: Once upon a time there was a band with two brothers who fought constantly and their name was Oasis; yeah, they broke up and the guys who didn’t hate each other formed a new band, and that band is Beady Eye. Led by Liam Gallagher, the band released their debut album in February of this year, titled Different Gear, Still Speeding. (A rather fitting name if you ask me…) Even with the pressure of a close eye from critics who eagerly waited to see just what the younger Gallagher brother would produce, Beady Eye successfully manages to separate themselves from the past with their stripped-down style. Obviously any Oasis fan will not want to miss their favorite band… sans one… but just don’t expect to hear your favorite songs (blame Noel).

Jane Birkin, Fri 12/9

Jane Birkin is a talented actress-turned-singer from London. Her career began in the early ’60s on the silver screen, and transitioned into music when she sang the theme song for the French film Slogan. Since then, Birkin has gone on to record fourteen studio albums in French and English, along with a handful of live albums. While you may need to bring a French interpreter to understand her words, perhaps it is best to just appreciate the delightful voice of Birkin and her ensemble sans translation.

Penguin Prison @ the U Street Music Hall, Sat 12/17

Chris Glover is better known as Penguin Prison, an electro pop project from New York. He first appeared on the scene with a band called The Smartest People. After a mediocre attention, Glover set out on his own, experimenting with a variety of remixes. In 2009, he made his debut as Penguin Prison with a song called “Animal, Animal.” Earlier this year, he released 11 tracks on the self-titled album. Glover has taken his electro sound and collaborated with/remixed a handful of popular artists including Passion Pit, Ellie Goulding, The Temper Trap, and Kylie Minogue. If you’re not sure if you would like Penguin Prison, let’s just say he has a song called “Don’t Fuck With My Money,” and I think it speaks for itself.

Drive-By Truckers w/ Lucero, Thurs 12/29

Drive-By Truckers is a well-regarded alternative country rock ensemble from Athens, Georgia. The band gained recognition in the music world with their 2001 release, Southern Rock Opera, a two-disc tale of a fictitious band called Betamax Guillotine (loosely based off of Lynyrd Skynyrd). Drive-By Truckers has gone on to produce nine studio albums, most recently releasing Go-Go Boots. “Go-Go Boots sounds like a slight retreat from that rock noise, indulging in [Mike] Cooley’s country jones as well as the band’s more acoustic tendencies… it’s a more dynamic record” writes Pitchfork. You can get your alt-country fix at the 9:30 at the end of the month as part of the band’s North American tour featuring support from southern indie rock group, Lucero.

In addition to these great shows at the 9:30 Club and U Street Music Hall, the kind folks at 9:30 will be hosting their 10th annual charity raffle! That’s right, in the spirit of giving, if you donate new or clean previously-loved clothes, a canned food item, or a monetary donation of $5 at the 9:30 Club, you will receive a raffle ticket to win a music lover’s dream come true: 2 tickets to every 9:30 show in 2012. You do not have to attend a show to donate, and a maximum of 10 tickets will be distributed each night from December 1 through December 30 at the club. The winner, who need not be present, will be drawn at the New Year’s Eve Drive-By Truckers show. This month-long raffle will benefit DC Central Kitchen, Sasha Bruce House, Capital Area Food Bank, House of Ruth, So Others Might Eat, and Bread for the City.

Alright TVD readers, tis the season for great shows and a great cause. We will have tickets to each of these events up for grabs, as usual. (Maybe even… later today?) If you do win, don’t forget to bring an item for donation for the charity raffle—that prize is pretty darn sweet!

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