Pop and Robbers

This band delivers hooks with its guitars, not its fists.

Tops Great American Rib Cook-Off Tower City Amphitheater, 351 Canal Road Thursday, May 26, through Monday, May 30; Hours are from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday and Friday, noon to 11 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and noon to 8 p.m. Monday. $5, free for kids under 12; call 440-247-4386
Robbers on High Street are dressed in their safari best - for their new tour, which brings them to town on - Friday.
Robbers on High Street are dressed in their safari best for their new tour, which brings them to town on Friday.
FRI 5/27

Even though Robbers on High Street name the sibling-squabbling Kinks as one of their musical influences and did time on the road with the Sleepy Jackson -- a band whose members have engaged in fisticuffs with one another offstage and on -- Robbers drummer Tomer Danan insists, "We get along pretty well." He then adds, "I'm surprised we've gone as long as we have on tour without any serious blow-ups." The New York quartet's debut album, Tree City, is a mix of piano-propelled indie pop and Brit-flavored guitar rockers that skirts the line between retro and modern. "We're pretty big fans of classic rock," admits Danan, rattling off a list of names that includes Led Zeppelin and David Bowie. "We like hooks and catchy tunes and a pop sensibility, but we also like to have a good energy that rocks out a bit." Robbers on High Street are at the Beachland Tavern (15711 Waterloo Road) at 9 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $8, available by calling 216-383-1124. -- Michael Gallucci

Drum Machines

SUN 5/29

Don't let the Planet of the Drums fool you. It has nothing to do with snares and high hats, and everything to do with eight hours of turntablists from around the country. With Philadelphia's Dieselboy (pictured), Florida's AK 1200, and New York's Dara as headliners, the drum & bass marathon also brings together 10 aspiring DJs from Ohio, Illinois, and Pennsylvania. (They include Dayton's JJ Boogie, Pittsburgh's DVS & Depth 1, and Chicago's Beet & Bad Lieutenant.) "A lot of DJs like the thrill of controlling the dance floor and being able to make people move," says promoter Alex Forte, an ex-DJ himself. "It's a lot of power for one person with a big sound system, of course. But that's how you get the party started." Planet of the Drums is from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday at Metropolis, 2325 Elm Street. Admission is $20; call 216-241-4007. -- Cris Glaser

Not Your Grandfather's Polka

THU 5/26

"You don't have to like polka to like what I do," says LynnMarie, the first woman ever to receive a Grammy nomination in the polka category. In fact, plenty of purists don't like what she does -- namely, playing polka you can pogo to with her band, the Boxhounds. She's on the bill -- along with Steve Meisner, Kathy Zamejc Vogt, and Grand Ole Opry Live host Nan Kelly -- at Thursday's Survivor's Celebration, a breast-cancer benefit. "Playing for people is great," says LynnMarie. "But there's got to be a bigger purpose." Show time is 8 p.m. at the Beachland Ballroom, 15711 Waterloo Road. Admission is $12; call 216-383-1124. -- D.X. Ferris

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