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“Dr. Dirty” John Valby

Northern Lights, Saturday

If you’re under 18, please ignore this portion of Noteworthy. Saturday night will mark roughly the millionth time John Valby’s come to town, and by all accounts, his mind is deeper in the gutter now than ever. That should come as no surprise to anyone who’s ever caught the good doctor in action—his best-loved songs include such gems as “Puff the Magic Tampon,” “Roll Your Leg Over,” and “Who Gives a Fuck.” Arriving on the eve of the Super Bowl, odds are he’ll turn out a riff or two about Janet’s boob—not necessarily current events, but funny nonetheless. It’s all in the name of good fun, and Valby’s performances are notoriously gut-busting affairs, so if you’re in the mood for a good, expletive-filled singalong, you know where to go. Remember, though, Valby is not a real doctor, he just plays one onstage. (Feb. 5, 7:30 PM, $16, 1208 Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)


voodoo glow skulls

Ska Is Dead Tour

Saratoga Winners, Saturday

The “Ska is Dead” tour that hits our area this weekend is actually the second such tour, which leads us to wonder why these guys are shitting us. Come on, the joke’s over—obviously, bands like Streetlight Manifesto, Voodoo Glow Skulls, and MU330 are well aware that there’s still an audience for their style of third-generation two-tone ska-punk, so why pretend to be putting it to rest? We asked the bloated, stinking corpse of Janis Joplin her opinion on the topic, and after polishing off a fifth of SoCo, she laid this, um, pearl of wisdom on us: “The answer’s simple, honey—death sells! Remember that ‘Mercedes Benz’ tune? Couldn’t afford me one of them until about ’78.” She took a long drag off an unfiltered Camel and continued, “Of course I couldn’t drive it, since I done myself in back in ’71, but what the hell.” So there you have it. Kicking Sicily and Public Access will round out the bill. (Feb. 5, 7 PM, $14, Route 9, Latham, 783-1010)

Tribute to Johnny Cunningham

The Egg, Sunday

The very structure of the tribute show often has a bit of a disappointment built in, insofar as the honoree is the act you’d really want to see. On Sunday, though, the folks gathered to pay tribute to Johnny Cunningham are more than honorable in their own rights. So, it’s win-win. Assembled to perform Cunningham’s originals (as well as some of his favorite covers and traditional tunes) will be the likes of his brother, accordionist Phil Cunningham, fiddler Kevin Burke, multi-instrumentalist Seamus Egan (of Solas), and Cunningham’s frequent collaborators, vocalist Susan McKeown and guitarist Aidan Brennan. (Feb. 6, 4 PM, Empire State Plaza, Albany, $22, 473-1848)

Stacey Earle and Mark Stuart

Caffe Lena, Sunday

It can be hard for a girl to get out from under the shadow of her big brother; it must have been a seemingly insurmountable task for Stacey Earle, considering that big brother is Steve Earle. Come on—he’s one of the last true Nashville rebels, a hard-rocking, middle-finger-waving, been-there-done-that type. So what’s a girl to do? In Stacey’s case, she simply did what came naturally—write heartfelt songs about life and love, steeped in the folk- and country-music traditions of the American South. Along with guitarist-husband Mark Stuart, she’s established a steady and successful performance career that has longtime fans asking, “Steve who?” Toronto-based duo the Undesirables will open Sunday’s show. (Feb. 6, 7 PM, $15, 47 Phila St., Saratoga Springs, 582-0022)

Super Bowl Punk Rock Party

Valentine’s, Sunday

Say you’re a devotee of the punk, and, as unlikely a combo as this may be, NFL football. “Where,” you may be wondering, “is the Super Bowl party for me?” Well, Valentine’s has solved your championship-sized problem. Spend your Sunday evening watching the game on three glorious screens, while at the same time enjoying the big punk sounds of Kitty Little, Lemuria, Frame, Latterman and the Conviction. Kitty Little are old friends who, with their new drummer, sound more punk than they ever have before. According to some Web site, Lemuria “was an ancient civilization which existed prior to and during the time of Atlantis.” We’re guessing the band thought this was cool. And Latterman? We found a critic who praised their “loose, bang-it-out approach.” Sounds about right. If that’s not enough of a lure, there will be pizza and wings, too. (Feb. 6, 7 PM, $6, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)


Flywheel, Wednesday

The Flywheel Arts Collective routinely books challenging, under-the-radar, left-of-the-dial acts, and from the looks of things, Wednesday’s show, featuring Ipecac recording artists, should be a fine example of why this venue is a valuable resource. Dälek (pronounced dialect—we don’t buy it either) are described as an experimental noise-hop act. The Flywheel’s Web site expounds: “Imagine Public Enemy, KRS-1 and Gang Starr having a conversation with Glenn Branca and My Bloody Valentine and you have an idea of what to expect.” We thought the same thing—there’s no way these guys could be that good, could they? Well, after listening to “Ever Somber” from Dälek’s latest album Absence six or seven times, we have to say that description was right on. This one’s worth the trip. Also on Wednesday’s bill: Bromp Trem, Belltone Suicide, and Ampere. (Feb. 9, 8 PM, $5, 2 Holyoke St., Easthampton, Mass., 413-527-9800)

Also Noted
The McKrells

Alert the pun police: Kick your weekend off at King’s Tavern tomorrow (Friday), with a hot set from DJ Ryan Kick (that one was way too easy); Patrick Newton is also on the bill (9 PM, $5, 581-7090). . . . St. Patty’s is only six weeks away, so now’s as good a time as any to start warming up for the big day: The McKrells will play the North Pointe Cultural Arts Center on Saturday (8 PM, $10-20, 758-9234). . . . Our favorite classic-rock and -metal band, Second Hand Smoke, will hit the Lark Tavern on Saturday; we hear that, if you ask nicely, they’ll play some Maiden (10 PM, $3, 463-9779). . . . Speaking of secondhand smoke, Bonnaroo-bound jam band Addison Groove Project will do their thing at Revolution Hall on Saturday, with help from the Brakes and School Bus Yellow (8 PM, $13, 273-2337). . . . This one starts early because it’s a schoolnight: Eighteen Visions, Emery, Remembering Never, Misery Signals and Graystar will pack as much rock as possible into Monday evening at Saratoga Winners (6:30 PM, $12, 783-1010). . . . Looking east, former surf champ and budding folk-rocker Donavon Frankenreiter plays the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, Mass., on Monday (8:30 PM, $15, 413-584-0610). . . . On Tuesday at the Iron Horse, it’s the return of Dutch power-poppers Bettie Serveert; Big Bright Sun and Moller support (8:30 PM, $12, 413-584-0610). . . . On Wednesday, the punk-pop of the Flying Bobbz will take over the typically-more-jazz-oriented stage at the Van Dyck; try and keep the slam-dancing to a minimum (8 PM, $5, 381-1111).

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