Flipping Whigs 

Top Georgia, Oklahoma bands invade area clubs.

WHIGS: Giving the fat lip at Sticky's.
  • WHIGS: Giving the fat lip at Sticky's.

The Whigs, hailing from Athens, Ga., have been called the “best unsigned band in America” by Rolling Stone. With their Elvis Costello-esque pop rock, they’re distinctly on the road to bigger and better things. “Give Em’ All a Big Fat Lip” is the bands first album in two years after touring with the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Barenaked Ladies and Drive-By Truckers.

They will return to Sticky Fingerz this Thursday. The show starts at 9:30, and tickets are $5.

Also bringing a distinctly funky Georgia vibe to Sticky’s this week are The Codetalkers, out of Atlanta. The Codetalkers have been backing Col. Bruce Hampton in recent years, but Hampton’s not touring due to health issues, so founder Bobby Lee Rodgers has taken the trio out on its own.

Rodgers studied music from age 8 and was a teacher at the prestigious Berklee School of Music in Boston before giving it all up to form the Codetalkers with Hampton. Rodgers admits that he was “terrified” to give up a steady job at one of the best music schools in the country but his songwriting was unstoppable, and when given the chance to play with the likes of the Colonel, he says he couldn’t resist.

The Codetalkers have played with some of the greats, including the legendary Hubert Sumlin. They’ll be bringing a jam-band style to the stage (along with the “air” trombone) to Sticky’s stage on Saturday. The show starts at 9 p.m. and admission is $8.

The Starlight Mints from Oklahoma play Juanita’s on Saturday, Oct. 7. This band has been playing since the ’90s and its style has been compared to the likes of the Flaming Lips and the artist Mark Ryden.

The Mints’ upbeat, poppy view is hard to dislike. It’s been called downright “surreal,” and with their lush arrangements, right-on timing and witty lyrics, it’s hard to deny that these “pop mutants” are making big waves wherever they go. Their new album “Drowaton” was released in April and offers the best of what the band has to offer. Who knew something so good could come from Oklahoma?

The show starts at 9 p.m. and is $10.

Blues singer Scott Ellison will be appearing this Friday at Cajun’s Wharf with a bad case of the blues. Another Oklahoman, Ellison proves the “Sooner State” is a lot more prolific than it might seem to us Arkies. Ellison was signed by Burnside Records in 2001 after touring with legends like Roy Orbison and Buddy Guy.

Ellison’s most recent album, “Bad Case of the Blues,” is said to have Steely Dan, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Muddy Waters influences. With a voice that’s a cross between Dylan, Waits and Clapton and a look like a Rolling Stone, Ellison’s bluesy, country sound will prove hard to sit still to. He has played with some music greats, including Clapton’s organist, Dick Simms, and (for all you vampire fans) he’s appeared in an episode of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” Check him out at 9 p.m. ($5 cover).

Louisiana transplant Amy Garland returns to the White Water Tavern on Friday. She’s made a name around Little Rock with her folk sound and she certainly plays well with others, including Nick Devlin, a great local musician in his own. Her new album, “Angora,” relies on her life experiences with friends and family to speak to the “heart” of the situation. Catch her this Friday at 10 p.m. ($5).

Other big acts to catch this week include a great two-fer on Thursday (Oct. 5): Bob Schneider in a solo show with Charlie Mars opening. Schneider, the former Scabs and Ugly Americans frontman, brings Austin rock infused with a California cool (hence the album title “The Californian”). The show starts at 9 p.m., and tickets are $15 … At White Water on Thursday local rockers The Reds have a modern rock feel. While all their songs sound a bit similar, they also all sound really good, so you won’t mind. They’ll be playing with San Antokyo (10 p.m. $3) … At the Afterthought catch Tonya Leeks, local girl and former singer for Beyonce, on Friday, Oct. 6 ($5), while local pianist Harry Snyder will be playing on Monday, also for $5 … Also this Friday, it’s another edition of 2nd Place Cafe with Ken Hart and Buddy Case (7:15 p.m., $6) … A Wednesday “special show” at White Water Tavern features LA rockers The Geisha Girls, while straight-out-of-the-’90s girl grunge rock Veruca Salt appears at Juanita’s with Agent Sparks and The Strays (8 p.m., $12 advance, $15 door) … At Revolution on Saturday see electronic duo The Crystal Method (9 p.m., $25). Akin to the Chemical Brothers and Fatboy Slim, the Method’s music has been featured in several TV shows, including “Alias.” Next Tuesday at the Rev Room, see Mute Math with Shiny Toy Guns and Jonezetta (9 p.m., $10).




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