There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
So what if the reality of being an indie musician is driving across the country making zero money and staying with losers who insist on showing you Pink Floyd’s Live at Pompeii before they let you sleep on their cat-shit-encrusted living-room floor? To eager, shaggy-haired high-school boys across the country, it must appear that Ben Bridwell, the singer-songwriter of Band of Horses, is living a dream: good-looking, talented, and signed to legendary indie Sub Pop. But like indie rock itself, that’s not the distinction it used to be, and Bridwell achieved it only after drumming for Seattle underground heroes Carissa’s Wierd (and listening to Neil Young and R.E.M. to an unhealthy degree) for years. BOH’s excellent debut, Everything All the Time, showcases Bridwell’s evocative, heartfelt lyrics, but he’s quite the singer as well, his reverb-drenched tenor suiting the music’s melancholy while avoiding the potholes of emo. Perhaps a guidance counselor’s best bet is to encourage his charges to show up early to catch Chad VanGaalen’s set. VanGaalen just released his second album, Skelliconnection, which was performed almost completely solo with instruments that VanGaalen crafted himself. Let’s see someone without a college degree do that. Band of Horses performs with Chad VanGaalen and Simon Dawes at 8:30 p.m. at the Black Cat, 1811 14th St. NW. $15. (202) 667-7960. (Peter Hepburn)