Carrying the tattered, oil-soiled flag of Motor City R&B-soul-garage, the Cobras are rock 'n' rollers of the highest order — just check their bar tab. Beyond that, Rachel Nagy's I've-ridden-shotgun-through-life vocals can send chills up the spine and butterflies to the groin — a true sign of a band worth raising at least a glass of good Midwestern beer to. The Detroit Cobras come home for a pre-Thanksgiving show at 9 p.m. at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-833-9700 for info. With Dirty Sweet.
The Silent Years, Zoos of Berlin and Freer
SNAP, CRACKLE, POP
A trio of finger-pistol-worthy Detroit indie pop bands kick up the instant nostalgia at the Lager House, in a way that only good white-kid din can. Think '60s AM pop radio and Roy Wood, and some cross-eyed cultural referencing through Prozac-safe riffs and chord changes. There might even be some good suits and an Eno look-alike or two. Know this: It's the club show of the month. At 9 p.m. at the Lager House, 1254 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-961-4668.
DON'T FORGET THE ®
Need we tell you the parade's coming to town? Candy-colored floats, marching bands, balloons and throngs of onlookers — everything we've come to expect in the 81 years that America's Thanksgiving Parade® has shimmied down Woodward — will fill downtown Detroit streets — but, hey, you already knew that. Pack an extra sweater (and maybe a cattle prod) as you crowd alongside the masses. The parade starts at Woodward and Mack avenues and finishes at Woodward and Congress; visit theparade.org for more info.
Amalgamation of Rhythms
"Crossing Borders While Connecting Souls" is the tagline of the night's performance, which will be headlined by Brooklynite Joaquin "Joe" Claussell. Indeed, the sound's a tad New Age-y — the sort that would come with a side of peyote, more so than the alcohol that will be free-flowing at the late-night event. The party will last from 10 a.m. to 5 a.m. (sweet!) at the Woodbridge Gallery, 1761 W. Forest, Detroit. Joining Claussell is Organic Dance Culture DJ Michael Geiger, who will again perform on Nov. 24 with Mike Grant and Keith Kent at the newly reopened Oslo, 1456 Woodward Ave., Detroit.
The name "Paul Oakenfold" is synonymous with "House Music Demigod." The British DJ and producer was the reigning force that sprang house music on English club culture. He remains one of the world's most popular DJs, branching out to different genres — be it remixing a Smashing Pumpkins song or repackaging a Britney Spears product. Joining Oakenfold is Detroit radio personality Judy Adams, a trained composer and musicologist. In the club's I-Lounge, she will spin an "ambient" set. At Clutch Cargo's, 65 E. Huron St., Pontiac; 248-333-2362 for info.
Detroit Symphony Orchestra
We've got Detroit's Top 100 songs elsewhere in this issue. Over at the DSO this weekend, they're celebrating the Big Three of the Western classic tradition: Bach, Brahms and Beethoven. From Johann Sebastian Bach, there's "Ricercare," though with a modern twist via Anton Webern's 1930s arrangement of the baroque original. From Beethoven, there's Symphony No. 1, and from Brahms, Symphony No. 2. Conducting is Douglas Boyd, among other things the artistic partner of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra in Minnesota. Max M. Fisher Music Center, 3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-576-5111.
This Is How It Goes
THE MAN GETS SCREWED
The folks over at Zeitgeist perform the Neil LaBute play, This Is How It Goes, which focuses on an interracial triangle set in small-town America. A white Man (yep, he's just known as "Man") returns to his Midwestern hometown to find his high school love, Belinda, married to Cody, a successful African-American businessman. When Belinda, disenchanted with her marriage, is attracted to Man, race, power dynamics, love and fear rear their heads. LaBute calls the play, which premiered in 2005 in London and on Broadway, a study of "how racism still affects all of us on a simple, daily level." Shows will also be held on Nov. 30, and Dec. 1 and 2. At Zeitgeist Performance Space, 2661 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-965-9192 for info.
Locks of Love
So short hair's, like, really popular. The pixie cut is totally in. That, and the cue-ball look. Forfeit layered vanity when you visit the salon next time; if you have long hair, be a good human being and donate it to Locks of Love, a philanthropy that collects hair to make wigs for financially disadvantaged children who are undergoing chemotherapy for cancer. Hair donations must be unbleached and at least 10 inches long. In an event to benefit Locks of Love, Modä Salon will donate all haircutting proceeds to the charity. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Modä Salon, 27618 Middlebelt Rd., Farmington Hills; 248-442-4922 for info.
Hailing from Detroit's east side, it's an understatement to say that Phat Kat is one of Detroit's most respected rappers. In fact, dude's been a key contributor to Detroit's rich and mercurial hip-hop scene. Indeed, he cut his teeth back in the '90s with Slum Village, and performed with such genre-definers as A Tribe Called Quest. Phat Kat (aka Ronnie Watts) released a worthy new album, Carte Blanche, earlier this year. He'll be joined by Street Justice, Melanie Rutherford, Marv Won, Stryfe, Dante, St. Diggity and Tree City at the Blind Pig, 208 S. First St., Ann Arbor; 734-996-8555 for info.
Dean Western: Sunken City Sound System
Here we go loop ...
"There are a lot of venues that have poetry and a lot of venues that have music, but I don't know too many that focus on merging the two," says adventurous performance poet Ann Holdreith of her new Musings series (third Sunday every month). Featured this month is bassist and loop-master Dean Western (of Larval and other avant-garde outfits) with vocal contributions from Sylvia Inwood and Holdreith. That's in addition to the open mic for musicians, poets and their collaborations (impromptu or otherwise). Months ahead: ragas by Joe and Carol Lucido (Dec. 30), Sufi poetry from Hosain Mosavat (Jan. 20) and a reunion of the out-there Zulu Brake Torque Society (Feb. 17). Pure Concepts Center for Creative Expression, 23023 Orchard Lake Rd., Bldg. C, Farmington, (just north of Grand River Avenue on the west side); call 248 583-7765 for information.
Ozzy, the sequel?
While Ozzy laments with lines like, "Wine is fine, but whiskey's quicker — suicide is slow with liquor," lead singer Magnus Pelander of Witchcraft expresses similar sentiments in simpler terms, singing, "Can't find the lyrics to explain how I feel; these troubling feelings, they are so unreal." Deep. While the lyricism of the Swedish doom metal band doesn't quite make par, they've been compared musically to Black Sabbath for their '70s guitar-heavy sound. Witchcraft's self-titled first album was recorded in a basement with vintage gear, creating a vibe that's more 1974 than 2004. Nice! The show's at 8 p.m. at the Crofoot, 1 S. Saginaw, Pontiac; 248-858-9333 for info.