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Within Range: Dec. 6-17

Within Range: Dec. 6-17

Upcoming events at the Launchpad and the Sunshine Theater


John Lennon may have once said the Beatles were more popular than Jesus, but when it comes to being “Kooler Than Jesus,” that title goes to My Life with The Thrill Kill Kult, also known as Thrill Kill Kult or simply TKK, this industrial-dance group with roots in Chicago has been getting asses on dance floors in sexy, sacrilegious celebration for more than 25 years.

wifisymbolThe band’s music – created by Groovie Mann and Buzz McCoy – is chock full of kitsch, trash and goth glamour and has landed them on bills with everyone from Lords of Acid to KMFDM. With a cinematic and often controversial sound, it makes sense that Thrill Kill Kult’s music was also crucial to the storyline of the 2013 dark comedy “Sexy Evil Genius” starring Seth Green and Michelle Trachtenberg. Roll in like “Sex on Wheelz” to TKK’s show at Launchpad, on Sunday, Dec. 6. Doors are at 7 p.m.; show opens with DJ K. Oss starting at 8 p.m. Tickets for this 21+ show are $13 and available at HoldMyTicket.com.

There it is, peering out from the crevices of every cynical grown-up heart: the kid inside secretly delighted by all the twinkly lights and cheerful music that permeates our world each December.

That childlike glee can best be summed up with !!! – the band, not the giddy exclamation. Pronounced Chk Chk Chk, !!! makes dance-punk music for people who dig on The Flaming Lips and “Yo Gabba Gabba!” in equal measure. Founded by Nic Offer in Sacramento in 1996, !!!’s giddy creativity has led to six albums, five EPs, covers of The Magnetic Fields and Nate Dogg and opening gigs for Red Hot Chili Peppers. The group’s latest record “As If” includes butt-wiggling tracks like “Bam City,” “Ooo” and “Freedom ’15.” !!! performs as themselves as opening band Stereolad (their Stereolab tribute group), and ABQ’s self-proclaimed “party-prog trio” YOU mediates. Dance it up at Launchpad on Tuesday, Dec. 8. Doors for this 13-plus show open at 7 p.m.; show’s at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 at launchpadrocks.com.

Launchpad, 618 Central SW

Let the Sunshine In with These Holiday Shows

As the temperatures drop and Christmas draws near, Sunshine Theater invites you to bask in their bright holiday cheer with not one but three fantastic Christmas concerts back-to-back. First up are killer psychobilly legends with A Reverend Horton Heat Christmas featuring The BellRays and The Lords of Altamont, on Tuesday Dec. 15. The Rev and company are no strangers to the 505, a town that loves its greaser boys, Betty pin-up girls, and classic car culture. The band’s latest album, 2014’s “Rev,” races right up that alley with tracks like “Victory Lap,” “Smell of Gasoline” and “Scenery Going By.”

Reverend Horton Heat’s also no stranger to rockin’ out on Christmas carols; the band released the delightful “We Three Kings” in 2005. Fans of Alabama Shakes and Detroit Cobras will definitely want to show up early enough to catch Lisa Kekaula’s explosive vocals as frontwoman for the BellRays, while psych-rock junkies should definitely check out The Lords of Altamont. Doors are at 7 p.m.; show at 8 p.m. Tickets to this 13-and-up show are $20 at sunshinetheaterlive.com.

Next up, Sunshine Theater and 104.1 FM present “How The Edge Stole Christmas!” with X Ambassadors and Night Riots, on Thursday Dec. 17. Brooklyn alt-rockers who deftly combine elements of acoustic and electronic music, X Ambassadors were formed by brother Sam and Casey Harris along with mutual pal Noah Feldshuh. The group got loads of attention for “The Jungle,” a collaboration with Jamie N Commons, which in turn landed them lots of listeners for 2015’s debut album, “VHS.” Meanwhile, Cali synth-dance rockers Night Riots started out grassroots and label-less as a high school band with an incessant touring schedule; their tireless efforts won them a loyal fan base along the way. The band released their third studio EP “Howl” earlier this year. Rock radio listeners ages 13 and up are welcome. Doors are at 7 p.m.; show is at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 via holdmyticket.com.

Last but not least, Sunshine Theater presents The Howlin’ Holiday Jam, a benefit concert with all proceeds going to New Day Youth & Family Services. Enjoy a night of rock, blues, soul and funk on Friday Dec. 18. The program lineup includes music from Junior Mack, Kevin Cummings, Kofi Burbridge and many more. Doors are at 7 p.m.; the music gets rockin’ at 8 p.m. Although general admission tickets start at $15 (visit holdmyticket.com for info), you can still become an official event sponsor. Check out http://bit.ly/HowlinSponsors to learn more.

Sunshine Theater (120 Central SW) 505-764-0249

M. Brianna Stallings writes so you don’t have to.

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Dennis Domrzalski is managing editor of ABQ Free Press. Reach him at dennis@freeabq.com.

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