Wednesday, Sept. 16
• Alright, Wednesday isn’t even close to the weekend, but this one is too good to pass up. And who doesn’t love a house show? Fresh off the heels of two performances at Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh, Brooklyn-based trio SoftSpot brings its pounding and ethereal sonic dreamscapes to Montford for a performance with experimental locals Wyla and Holy Holy Vine. 8 p.m. Donations appreciated.
Thursday, Sept. 15
• “Over 50,000 dogs and cats were left behind in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina as FEMA required that all animals be left behind in the mandatory evacuation,” begins a synopsis of Dark Water Rising. “This forced separation created America’s first-ever major animal rescue. A dedicated and compassionate group of volunteer rescuers and animal welfare groups from around the world risked their lives to sledgehammer down doors and brave toxic floodwaters in a truly heroic effort to save nearly 10,000 animals. Dark Water Rising is a film about hope and survival in the face of one of the worst natural disasters in American history.” The film screens at Firestorm Cafe (48 Commerce Street, 255-8115). 8 p.m. Free.
• From a recent Xpress article: “Do it to Julia have been churning out Appalachian-tinged indie folk since its four members met while attending college in Boone half a decade ago. The band’s percussive sound is most recognizable from the melodic interplay between the sharp vocal harmonies of songwriters Halli Anderson and Ryan O’Keefe and Anderson’s soaring violin. Having just completed its sophomore album, the band recently changed its name to River Whyless … ” The band departs on a six-week, nationwide tour Friday, so don’t miss the official kickoff show at The Grey Eagle (185 Clingman Ave., 232-5800) with Holy Ghost Tent Revival and Little Tybee. 8:30 p.m. $8.
• Summer ends next week, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to surf. “The Krektones blend the surf swagger of the Ventures with the scorching guitar of Link Wray and just a wee bit of Tav Falco psychobilly to make a beat that’s pretty much impossible to stand still to,” reads the band’s bio. “The Krektones feature Jason Krekel at lead, Dave Gay on bass and Lance Wille on drums. These instrumentalists bring a broad range of musical experience, swinging wide from stints with The Parting Gifts, Freakwater and The Reigning Sound, as well as some seminal Asheville bands, including the Firecracker Jazz Band, Mad Tea Party, The Unholy Trio and White Heat. Don’t let the sequined tuxedo jackets fool you — these boys will rip it up.” The band plays The Bywater (796 Riverside Drive, 232-6967). 7 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 16
• Celebrate the changing seasons with an easy-to-moderate 1.4-mile hike to the top of Craggy Pinnacle “where you can enjoy a 360-degree view of early fall color.” Hike departs from the Craggy Dome Overlook, MP 364, just north of the Craggy Gardens Visitor Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Bring water and be prepared for inclement weather. Info: 298-5330.
• Every Friday, the Classic World Cinema Foreign Film Series hosts free screenings at Courtyard Gallery (109 Roberts St. in Asheville’s River Arts District). This week, take in Luis Buñuel’s The Exterminating Angel, a psychological horror story examining the chaos that ensues when the guests of a lavish dinner party, for an unexplained and mysterious reason, are unable to leave the room. 8 p.m. See Ken Hanke’s review here.
• “Our latest world premiere is an ‘adult’ comedy, literally,” explains The Magnetic Field‘s website. “Shangri-La, by Lucia Del Vecchio (author of The Family Tree) is a simultaneously hilarious and moving look at the lives of senior citizens living in a retirement trailer park in Florida. Shangri-La’s six characters, ranging in age from their late 60s to their early 80s, deal with nosy neighbors, gossip, possibly inappropriate poolside attire, Internet dating, golden years’ love and sex and an Under-the-Sea-themed mixer and dance that might bring everyone together, if they can all make it to the big night.” The play officially opens Friday, but the theater hosts “low cost” preview performances Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and Friday at 4 p.m.
• From an Xpress review, “Influences seem varied and far-reaching — a hint of Paul and Linda McCartney, a touch of Elvis Costello, maybe even a nod to Dimitri Tiomkin. As wildly diverse as these elements are, Grammer School effectively chorales them into pithy, concise songs (thanks in part to the tasteful, spot-on percussion of drummer Bill Cooley). So, whether as rock show at the Orange Peel or as backdrop to shopping and socializing at cozy Good Stuff Grocery, Grammer School provides an apt soundtrack.” See for yourself at Tolliver’s Crossing (733 Haywood Road, 505-2129). 10 p.m. Free.
Saturday, Sept. 17
• According to an event page on the Warren Wilson College website, “Plow Day is an event for draft horse farmers to gather and demonstrate the use of traditional horse drawn agriculture equipment. Live music, draft horse demonstration logging competitions, arts and crafts, cider making and blacksmith demonstration make or a perfect family outting.” Held on the college’s Swannanoa campus, 701 Warren Wilson Road. 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
• “Catawba RiverFest is an annual celebration sponsored by the CVHA and a variety of local governmental and non-govermental organizations,” explains a release for the event. “The focus of the festival is to provide everyone with an opportunity to enjoy the benefits of the Catawba River as well as providing an opportunity for local organizations to highlight issues impacting the river. The festival features music from local artists, food, booths from local organizations and a water derby.” Held at the Paddy’s Creek Area of Lake James State Park in Nebo. Info: 465-2755.
• From a recent Xpress blog, “If this is the first you’ve heard of Knives and Daggers, you’re not alone. The quintet formed in Asheville half a decade ago, but a number of sonic adjustments and personnel changes kept it on the sidelines of the local music scene until now … What Hurts the Most is 30 minutes of sweeping, nostalgia-inducing swells, both bright and melancholy at once. It’s classic shoegaze from start to finish, but for the most part, Knives and Daggers shys away from the heavy use of effects that characterized the ‘80s shoegaze scene, instead opting for dense layers of guitars and strings to build its epic tides of sound.” The band performs tracks from its new album at The LAB (39 North Lexington Avenue, 252-0212). Gray Young and Jason Herring and the Mystery Plan open. 10 p.m. $5.