Prog Rock & Punk: Mikey G's Entertainment Picks of the Week

This week’s top music picks around town, from the guy who’s paid to listen: Monday: Modern prog-rockers Porcupine Tree have had a busy year. Their latest album, Fear of a Blank Planet, was released in April. A new EP, Nil Recurring, came out last month. Like all prog, we have no idea what leader Steven Wilson’s going on about, but it sure sounds grand smothered in all those big, tricky riffs. They’re at House of Blues tonight. Tuesday: On their new CD, Down III: Over the Under, metalheads Down crank out a bunch of loud tunes about how much religion and the government sucks. Former Pantera singer Phil Anselmo even finds room to talk about his newfound sobriety. Down plays House of Blues. Wednesday: One of our all-time favorite bands, the Drive-By Truckers, return to the Beachland. They haven’t released a new album since last year’s A Blessing and a Curse, but they are testing fresh material onstage. They’re also adjusting to life without guitarist Jason Isbell, who left earlier this year. Thursday: Freak-rockers Ween have jumped genres so many times, it’s tough to tell how often they’re really satirizing the music they play (they weren’t serious about that album of cowboy songs, were they? Or the CD of sea chanteys?). Their latest record, La Cucaracha, is more of the same zany fun. They’re at House of Blues. Friday: Because they come from Canada, the Weakerthans’ take on punk rock doesn’t sound like the punk rock we make here in the States. Their fourth album, Reunion Tour, actually steers close to roots-rock-inspired indie pop: pedal steel, banjo, and glockenspiel are all over it. They’re at the Grog Shop. --Michael Gallucci
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