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The mid Atlantic ain’t exactly synonymous with kick-ass music festivals, but Baltimore‘s renegade art/music collective Wham City (most famous member: Dan Deacon) might be changing that. This Friday kicks off the fourth annual Whartscape, a three-day, weekend-long sonic smorgasbord of B-more’s best and brightest bands, and their friends from the rest of the States and beyond. Wye Oak, Lo Moda, Bad Brilliance, and 13 other bands play from noon to 5 p.m outside the Baltimore Museum of Art. For free.

More info and video from last year’s Whartscape after the jump.

Not familiar with Wham City? Get acquainted. B-more’s a quirky metropolis with a soundtrack to match. Just as trained ears can pick out a distinctive D.C. post-punk grind, Baltimore’s deafening feature is noisy pop. And Wham City’s noisy pop, Baltimoreans will agree, is de riguer. It’s a bit off in the best way possible, and so is Baltimore.

Mega-Ppsses and Friday evening’s show in the BMA auditorium are sold out, but tickets for individual shows are still available for $18. Considering each set’s lineup of 20+ bands, that’s a lot of bang for your buck.