MP3 Weekender: Earthworms, Ratatat, Brothers & Sisters
Where: Under the marquee of the Pageant
When: Saturday, August 30, at 2:45 p.m.
Playing with: As part of the East Loop Block Party; full line-up here.
Sounds Like: Earthworms has long been a leading light among the city’s hip-hop scene, and the collective’s recent work represents a pinnacle of sorts. This year’s Bottle Full of Bourbon builds off the funk-heavy, catch-all vibe of the group’s debut; Mathias, Kama and Black Patrick trade verses, while DJ Mahf cooks up a stew of smooth old-school soul and hard-edged beats. The Earthworms’ live performances infuse a new energy into these tracks, as funky keyboards, skronking horns and a crack rhythm section back these rappers. -- Christian Schaeffer
MP3: Earthworms, "Bottle Full of Bourbon"
Where: The Gargoyle, on the campus of Washington University
When: 8 p.m. Saturday, August 30
Sounds like: "Maybe it's just the shrieking panther samples, but listening to Ratatat can make a person feel like he's creeping through a jungle and a dance party's about to pounce. The group's exotic mash-up of rump-shaking beats, autoharp, video-game blurts and dual-lead-guitar shredding is instantly recognizable and proprietarily awesome." (link) -- Richard Gintowt
MP3: Ratatat, "Mirando"
BROTHERS AND SISTERS (MySpace)
Where: Off Broadway (3509 Lemp Avenue)
When: Monday, September 1
Playing with: World Famous Tractor Pull
Sounds like: An alt-country act brought up on deceptively sunny SoCal '70s pop (Fleetwood Mac) and the '80s Paisley Underground movement (The Dream Syndicate), as much as it liked the Old 97's. -- Annie Zaleski
MP3: Brothers & Sisters, "You're Gone"