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A plethora of shows will be hitting the stage this week across our port city, thanks to the influx of summer concert series now in effect alongside many venues hosting talented acts. Not to mention we have quite a roster of local musicians peppering the scene, too. While we could suggest just just one show to see this week, we will refrain. Too much is happening this Memorial Day weekend to be overlooked.

Here’s a gander at the top shows we think you should be going to in order to get your music fix. From surf rock to ‘90s rock to neo folk to nerd rock, you’ll find a lot to listen to and enjoy.


Thursday, May 22nd

Stray Local

Duck & Dive, 114 Dock St. • Free

An Americana trio featuring layered vocal harmonies and toe-tapping rhythms, Stray Local has been making waves in their infancy, playing Southern old-time, blues, and R&B. Hannah Lomas, Jamie Rowen, and Nick Simon have been featured on WHQR’s “Soup to Nuts Live!” and placed second in the non-traditional band category at Hoppin John Fiddler’s Convention. Locally, they won the first Hourglass Studio’s Free EP competition; following, they released their first EP in January 2014.

From encore writer Chris Pendergast: “A raw sound is captured on their EP, which lends itself to countless emotions, from being entranced by a slow waltz to stomping furiously through a crowd singalong.”


Friday, May 23rd

D&D Sluggers

Orton’s, 133 N Front St., 8 p.m. • Cover charge

Known for their brand of nerd rock, D&D Sluggers take dance pop and incorporate chiptunes from the Nintendo. Yep, it’s an attack on the ears thanks to the use of the Game Boy DMG and Nintendo DS, which work in harmony with guitar, synths and vocals. The outcome is quite catchy, and even led the fellas to play festivals like Hopscotch, Nerd-a-palooza, The Escapist Expo, MAGFest 11, and SXSW. As if members Soultron and DS don’t have a dedicated following already, they also published a guide teaching others how to make chiptunes. Don’t miss them this weekend at Orton’s; they’ll feed your brain all kinds of bleeps and boops from their 2011 debut, “This Album is a Party.”


Indie folk icon Paleface, with his girlfriend and drummer Mo Samalot, will play Bourgie Nights on Saturday. Photo by Staton Carter


Bourgie Nights, 127 Princess St., 9 p.m. • $7-$15 (all ages show)

Thanks to literal hands-on training from folk god Daniel Johnston, prolific indie-folk icon Paleface has transformed his 20-plus year solo gig into a duo. In 2010, he welcomed the addition of drummer/girlfriend Mo Samalot. Now the two bring vocal harmonies to light with their latest release, “One Big Party” (Ramseur Records), which includes collaborations with labelmates and NC darlings, The Avett Brothers.

Discovered by Danny Fields (The Stooges, Ramones, MC5) at an open-mic in 1989, Paleface has released well over a dozen albums. Grammy-award-winning artist Beck once roomed with the musician in NYC, and claims Paleface a major influence over his own songwriting. Also a a visual artist, Paleface sells his own art at shows, as well as festivals worldwide.

The concert at Bourgie Nights will be an intimate listening-room experience with a neo-folk hero.


Saturday, May 24th

Sister Hazel

Ziggy’s By the Sea, 208 Market St., 9 p.m. Tickets: $20-$25

Hailing from Gainsville, Florida, alternative rockers Sister Hazel will come to Ziggy’s this weekend. Consisting of Ken Block (lead vocals), Jett Beres (bass, harmony vocals), Andrew Copeland (rhythm guitar, vocals), Ryan Newell (lead and slide guitar, harmony vocals), and Mark Tronjanowski (drums), the band formed in 1993. They released their first, self-titled album in ‘94, and following the course of three decades, they’ve released seven more records.

Most recently Sister Hazel rendered “Heartland Highway”(Croakin’ Poets and Rock Ridge) in 2010 and “Release” in 2013. “Release” garnered the 37th spot on the Billboard Album Charts—their highest performing record.

Notoriety came quickly for the band; their tracks have been utilized in films such as “Major League: Back to the Minors,” “The Wedding Planner,” “Clay Pigeons,” and “10 Things I Hate About You.” As well, they recorded as part of the Fleetwood Mac tribute album “Gold Dust Woman.”

The Carvers

Satellite Lounge, 120 Greenfield St., 10 p.m. Free

Consisting of Ben Moore, Brian Drake, Jason Delamar, Seth Moody, and Steviemack Harrington, Wilmington’s very own surf-stomp-rock group will be releasing their first CD this weekend at Satellite.  They play with fierce ferocity as they modernize ‘50s and ‘60s garage-rock stylings that has audiences dancing their socks off far and wide. Think a Cramps-Dick Dale hybrid .


Wednesday, May 28th

Toad the Wet Sprocket

Ziggy’s By the Sea, 208 Market St., 9 p.m. Tickets: $20-$25

Generating its namesake from Eric Idle’s fictional band in “Monty Python,” Toad the Wet Sprocket came from California in 1986. Lead singer Glen Phillips, guitarist Todd Nichols, bassist Dean Dinning, and drummer Randy Guss released five studio albums from ‘89 to ’98, and sold over four million copies. The band procured radio notoriety through songs like “Walk on the Ocean” and “All I Want.” The 1992 movie-version of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” even used “Little Heaven.”

Soft guitar and percussion accompanies low-key vocals that occasionally shift to falsetto in quintessential ‘90s-rock vibes. Though the band broke up in 1998, they reunited in 2006. They released a new single in 2013, “New Constellation,” and an album of the same name under their own label, “Abe’s Records.”

Annually the make their way across the nation, to perform small venue shows. They’ll hit Ziggy’s on Wednesday night for Wilmington fans.

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Encore Magazine regularly covers topics pertaining to news, arts, entertainment, food, and city life in Wilmington. It also maintains schedules and listings of local events like concerts, festivals, live performance art and think-tank events. Encore Magazine is an entity of H&P Media, which also powers Wilmington’s local ticketing platform, Print and online editions are updated every Wednesday.

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