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Argenta Film Series screens 'Warrior Champions' 

WEDNESDAY 8/15

IRON TONGUE, PALLBEARER, WINDHAND

10 p.m. White Water Tavern. $5.

In case you missed it, the Times last week published a feature about Iron Tongue and their forthcoming record, produced by metal maestro Billy Anderson for release on Neurot Recordings. The album won't be out until February, but it'll be worth the wait. But until then, you can enjoy the Iron Tongue live show, which is killer. Pallbearer's incredible "Sorrow and Extinction" is one of 2012's best albums of any genre and is sure to top many critics' year-end lists come December. It's getting a vinyl release Aug. 28 on 20 Buck Spin. In a couple weeks, they'll hit the road as the headliner for an 11-day tour sponsored by Scion A/V, with Seattle's Samothrace and Atlanta's Royal Thunder. This show is Pallbearer's first with drummer Mark Lierly, who's played in a number of bands, including Soophie Nun Squad, Sugar and the Raw and R.I.O.T.S. Windhand is a killer five-piece out of Richmond, Va. They conjure up smoked-out doomy atmosphere and bitchin' riffs aplenty on their self-titled album, released back in March.

THURSDAY 8/16

ARGENTA FILM SERIES: 'WARRIOR CHAMPIONS'

7 p.m. Argenta Community Theater. Free.

The Little Rock Film Festival's Argenta Film Series recently got a boost with a grant from the William F. Laman Public Library System, which means attendance will be free at the series. "The grant is $1,000 per showing so essentially that covers the cost of admission and the cost of the theater," said Jeff Baskin, director of the library. The grant covers the entirety of the current season, he said, adding that the library wanted its "patrons to go there and not pay anything, because we think it's an important series and we're pleased to be a part of it." This season kicks off with "Warrior Champions: From Baghdad to Beijing," directed by LRFF founders Brent and Craig Renaud. The film follows several wounded American soldiers as they refocus their lives from the ravages of wartime to the rigors of training for the 2008 Paralympic Games (the 2012 games begin Aug. 29 in London). The film won Best Documentary at the 2010 Naples International Film Festival and Best Political Feature at the 2010 Staten Island New York Film Festival. Its television debut was June 10 on the Documentary Channel. Attending the screening will be wounded Iraq war veteran Anthony Smith, Mark Leonard from Arkansas Freedom Fund, producer Vincent Insalaco and director Craig Renaud.

THURSDAY 8/16

KEEP THE GARDEN GROWING

9 p.m. White Water Tavern. $5.

Anyone who has stepped outside in recent weeks can tell you that 2012 has been a brutal year for farmers in Arkansas and across much of the South and Midwest, as the region suffers through one of the hottest prolonged periods and one of the worst droughts in decades. That goes double for anybody who's attempted to raise a garden. Dunbar Community Garden Project Coordinator Damian Thompson said irrigation has been a constant concern, and that much of the fruit this year has come in weeks early and smaller than usual. This show is a fundraiser to help ensure that the "two-acre outdoor classroom" has the resources it needs to continue educating the community about where food comes from. This show includes performances from Peckerwolf, Tsar Bomba and Winston Family Orchestra, as well as a raffle for a basket filled with honey, a dozen eggs, a Dunbar Garden shirt and a package of threshed sunflower seeds. The White Water's kitchen will be serving up food made with some of Dunbar's produce, including pear ice cream from Loblolly Creamery (to be served, I'm told, atop a bread pudding from WWT chef Jonathan Wilkins) and eggplant fries.

FRIDAY 8/17 and SATURDAY 8/18

OTIS

9 p.m. Cajun's Wharf. $5.

Chicago septet Otis traffics in the type of retro R&B and funk sounds pioneered by such revivalists as Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings and Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears. Otis's sound, though, isn't quite as consistently gritty as those outfits. You'll hear jazzy flourishes and subtle, lounge-y sounding keys alongside the Stax-informed soul workouts. The band is fronted by Jessica Ott, a native of Little Rock whose singing is clear and strong when it needs to be, sultry and smoky when called for. The band is tight and should sound road-tested and ready. They're playing a string of dates across Arkansas and Missouri over the next 10 days, including shows at Kingfish and Tanglewood Branch Beer Co. in Fayetteville on Aug. 16 and 20, respectively, at Webby D's in Fort Smith on Aug. 19 and at Squid and Whale in Eureka Springs on Aug. 22.

SATURDAY 8/18

SHONEN KNIFE

9 p.m. Stickyz. $10 adv., $12 day of.

Back in the early '80s, a trio of young Japanese women living in Osaka found inspiration in the sugary melodies, buzz-saw guitars and 4/4 rhythms of The Ramones and formed a band called Shonen Knife. Their playing at that point had a charming, almost Shaggs-y wobbliness, but the tunes were hella catchy. Anybody who digs the shambling sounds of early Television Personalities or The Raincoats would be advised to seek out Shonen Knife's "Burning Farm." By 1989, the band became the object of cultish adoration among the rock cognoscenti of the era, earning a double-LP tribute titled "Every Band has a Shonen Knife Who Loves Them," which featured Sonic Youth, Redd Kross, The Three O'Clock and L7, among many others. Like a good many folks my age, the first exposure I had to the band was on the brilliant interstitial video commentaries of Messrs. Beavis and Butthead. By that point, Shonen Knife had already traveled the world and toured with Nirvana. "I was an emotional sap the whole time," Kurt Cobain told MTV of watching Shonen Knife. "I cried every night." The band just celebrated its 30th anniversary and while guitarist and singer Naoko Yamano is the only founding member left, the Shonen Knife experience — relentless pop-punk songs about cute animals and candy — remains the same as ever, which is reassuring in this cynical modern-day world of Autotune and Twitter and stuff like that. Opening the 18-and-older show are the garage rockers par excellence The Bloodless Cooties and Ezra Lbs., whose self-titled album on Thick Syrup has gotten a lot of spins here at Times HQ.

SATURDAY 8/18

UPROAR FESTIVAL

1 p.m. Arkansas State Fairgrounds. $45.

Here's a list of the bands performing at this year's Edgefest Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival: Shinedown, Godsmack, Staind, Papa Roach, Adelita's Way, P.O.D., Fozzy, In This Moment, Deuce, Redlight King, Mindset Revolution, Candlelight Red, Playing with Karma. According to the festival's website, you can "enjoy a cool, tasty, free Rockstar Energy Drink then shift your focus across the festival to the Ernie Ball and Jagermeister stages!" So everybody will probably have at least one Rockstar energy drink in them. The way they scheduled it seems like a good idea. Basically, all the headliners are playing consecutively so you won't have to choose between Godsmack and Staind or Papa Roach and Shinedown. It sucks when you're at a music festival and you have to make tough choices because two of your favorite bands are playing at the same time. Also: the rap rock band Deuce — scheduled to play the Ernie Ball Stage at 3:50 p.m. — has a song called "Till I Drop" and one called "Let's Get it Crackin.' "

MONDAY 8/20

SOMEONE STILL LOVES YOU BORIS YELTSIN

9 p.m. Stickyz. $8 adv., $10 day of.

Springfield, Mo.'s, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin arrived back in the early '00s and by mid-decade had become a familiar name on the blog circuit. In 2006, SSLYBY landed the song "Oregon Girl" on the MTV soap "The OC" and inked a deal with Polyvinyl Records that same year. The band's independently released full-length "Broom," was re-released to generally positive reviews. The 2008 follow-up, "Pershing," met with similar reception, as did 2010's "Let it Sway." That record's sound — it was produced by Beau Sorenson and Death Cab For Cutie's Chris Walla — isn't glossy, really. At times, though, it feels a bit restrained, like the band really wants to rock out more but keeps it between the white lines instead of purposefully heading into the ditch every once in a while. "My Terrible Personality" and "All Hail Dracula!" raise a bit of a ruckus. The latter has some satisfyingly nervy dueling guitars, for instance. But for the most part, the record is all handclaps and harmonies and jangly guitars. It's fine guitar pop that hits many of the same pleasure centers as Canadian cult power-poppers Sloan, The Shins or Weezer when they decide to care about writing a song. The show is 18-and-older.

Correction: An earlier version of this article listed the wrong years in which the film "Warrior Champions" won Best Political Feature at the Naples International Film Festival and Best Political Feature at the Staten Island Film Festival. It has been corrected.
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