DevilPass: Captain Squeegee and the Soap Suds, Euro-folk music and breakdancing

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This week we embrace the fringe. Local ska-turned-psychedelic stars collaborate with a massive jazz group, while an experimental theater troupe makes its triumphant return to the public. A veteran outsider artist hits downtown’s most exciting stage, and a Norwegian lo-fi artist hopes to make a splash in his local debut. And the keepers of hip-hop’s most sacred craft keep the movement going with an anniversary event of epic proportions.

Captain Squeegee with ASU Concert Jazz Band

  • Thursday, Nov. 8
  • 7 p.m. Doors, 8 p.m. Show
  • Crescent Ballroom: 308 N. Second Ave.
  • Getting there: Walk — Second Avenue and Van Buren Street
  • Price: $8 in advance at crescentphx.com or $10 at the door

Recommended if You Like: big band, Rx Bandits, space

Ten years ago, a band called Captain Squeegee and the Soap Suds emerged in the local ska scene. Armed with seven members, some horns and one of the silliest band names around, the group quickly made their rounds, opening for ska group that passed through Phoenix. Now, after member changes, a shortening of their moniker, and some music degrees under their respective belts, Captain Squeegee is an entirely different animal. Squeegee’s sound is a musical-theorist/band-geek’s dream, with songs jumping with ease between time signatures. As part of their expanded vision, the psychedelic-obsessed group has begun collaborating with various professional and student ensembles in the area, including a huge show with Mesa Community College’s Big Band at Tempe’s MADCAP Theaters last year. For their latest endeavor, Captain Squeegee is joining forces with the ASU Concert Jazz Band for a one-off gig in downtown’s Crescent Ballroom.

<Solaris>

  • Friday-Sunday, Nov. 9-11
  • 9 p.m. Show
  • Phoenix Center for the Arts: 1202 N. Third St.
  • Getting there: Walk — Third and Moreland streets
  • Price: Pay-what-you-can at the door

Recommended if You Like: multimedia, science-fiction, A Streetcar Named Desire

Over the summer, the still-growing experimental Orange Theater Group posted a photo to its Facebook page, announcing its new home inside the basement of Phoenix Center for the Arts. Now, after months of work on the space, rehearsals and auditions, the group is ready for its return to the public. With its first show, Orange is filling a void in the local theater scene. The show they’ll be presenting is called <Solaris>, a multimedia production mixing together traditional acting, dance, vocalizations and films to create a truly unique production. Taking its name and some plot elements from Andrej Tarkovsky’s science-fiction play, the show takes an even stranger turn by claiming to also cull from A Streetcar Named Desire. Though this may sound like a bit much, the theater company uses a technique to ensure anyone and everyone can see their shows, asking only what the attendee can afford in exchange for the performance.

Daniel Johnston

  • Sunday, Nov. 11
  • 7 p.m. Doors, 8 p.m. Show
  • Crescent Ballroom: 308 N. Second Ave.
  • Getting there: Walk — Second Avenue and Van Buren Street
  • Price: $21 in advance at statesidepresents.com or Stinkweeds; $23 at the door

Recommended if You Like: Willis Earl Beal, outsider folk, rock docs

In the late 1970s, Daniel Johnston began recording songs in his parents’ basement on a battered boombox and piano. For over ten years, Johnston continued to release stream-of-consciousness love songs recorded straight to cassette, slowly gaining the attention of the underground music press thanks to his time spent in Austin, Texas. The urgency of his music combined with Johnston’s earnest demeanor kept people in tune, but the attention also led to trouble for the schizophrenic singer, landing him in and out of various institutions over the course of the late 1980s and 1990s. A true icon of the outsider music scene Johnston even earned the praise of the late Kurt Cobain, who wore one of Johnston’s T-shirts consistently at the height of Nirvana’s fame. Now, after an eight-year absence from the state, the singer-songwriter is back, touring in support of his latest project, the comic book and accompanying soundtrack Space Ducks.

A Ton of Bricks Falling a Thousand Yards

  • Monday, Nov. 12
  • 7:30 p.m. Doors, 8 p.m. Show
  • The Trunk Space: 1506 NW Grand Ave.
  • Getting there: Bike — 15th and Grand avenues
  • Price: $8 at the door

Recommended if You Like: lo-fi, Emperor X, film strips

“The wonderful A Ton Of Bricks Falling A Thousand Yards is a Norwegian artist who makes music and films.” This is the only description on the website of this Euro-folkie, traveling to the Trunk Space this week. Though seemingly simple but quirky, the music of the artist is far more interesting and complex. In his solo performances, A Ton of Bricks follows absolutely zero trends. His sparing, electric-guitar songs float by seamlessly, accompanied by crackling loops and soft vocals. And projected on the walls at every show is an array of DIY films, also made by the singer-songwriter. Underground art at its finest, all produced by a singular Norwegian man, engrossed in his craft.

Furious Styles Crew 19th Anniversary—Urban Sol

  • Friday, Nov. 9
  • 6-10 p.m.
  • Civic Space Park: 424 N. Central Ave.
  • Getting there: Walk — Central Avenue and Taylor Street
  • Price: FREE

Recommended if You Like: b-boys, Style Wars, New York City

Whether the mainstream realizes it or not, breakdancing culture holds tremendous weight in the history of hip-hop. While never attracting quite the attention of DJs or rappers, breakdancing has remained at worst a cult phenomenon all over the world. In Phoenix, the nexus of all breakdancing activity comes from the Furious Styles Crew. Formed in 1993 by the legendary B-Boy House CMW, Furious Styles has long ensured hip-hop doesn’t abandon its roots of camaraderie, competition and innovation. Each year, the crew hosts a weekend-long party of epic proportions, celebrating its legacy in the community and throwing down the gauntlet for all other dance crews in the area. Though its base is in North Phoenix at CYPHERS Center for the Urban Arts, Furious Styles isn’t forgetting about the downtown scene, pulling together a massive FREE showcase this Friday at Civic Space Park. Featured at the event will be 2vs2 Open Styles B-boy battles to qualify for the top 8 performance on Saturday, 1vs1 breaking battles for a $200 cash prize and a live art expo featuring numerous members of the extended Furious Styles family.

Events compiled by Connor Descheemaker