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What to Know Before You Go

MUSIC

Tokyo Police Club
9 p.m. Wed., Aug. 1
Republic, 828 S. Peters St., 528-8282; www.republicnola.com

No longer can Saddle Creek — Conor Oberst's little label that could — be called small. Renowned for years as a launching pad for homegrown artists (see its bread-and-butter Bright Eyes records), the independent Nebraska imprint has begun setting its sights outside of Omaha's city limits. Its diversifying catalog now includes representatives from both the West Coast (Californians Rilo Kiley and Two Gallants) and the East (North Carolina's Eric Bachmann and Washington, D.C.'s Georgie James). Tokyo Police Club is Saddle Creek's most recent signee, and its first international one at that. But don't let the name fool you; the label isn't turning Japanese (at least not yet). The angular, dance-party pop that TPC practices on the new seven-inch single "Your English is Good" is a dead giveaway for its Canadian origins. Without so much as an LP, the band has built an impressive touring resumé over the last year, including gigs at Toronto's Edgefest, California's Coachella and the upcoming Lollapalooza in Chicago. Ra Ra Riot, a Syracuse six-piece, opens the indie-rock showcase. Tickets $10. — Noah Bonaparte Pais


STAGE
High Society
8 p.m. Thu.-Sat., Aug. 2-4; 2 p.m. Sun., Aug. 5
Tulane University, Lupin Theatre, 865-5269; www.summerlyric.tulane.edu

High Society shows that the petty problems and ridiculous habits of the upper classes are even funnier when put to music. Hilarious ballads like "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" and "Say It With Gin" string together the musical story of Tracy Lord, a troubled, recently divorced heiress planning a wedding, which is being painstakingly recorded by a blackmailing gossip columnist. Always looking for the best in life, Tracy begins to rethink her marriage plans when she realizes she still cares for her ex-husband, a popular jazz musician who's much more exciting than her dull-but-rich fiancŽ. What follows is a bizarre-but-amusing love triangle set amid the extravagance of everyday life on the Lords' estate. The musical is based on Philip Barry's play A Philadelphia Story, which was adapted into the 1956 Turner Entertainment Co. film, High Society , starring Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong. The music and lyrics are by Cole Porter. Tickets $25-$32. — Emily Hohenwarter

FILM
Punk's Not Dead
7:30 p.m. Fri.-Thu., Aug. 3-9
Zeitgeist Multidisciplinary Arts Center, Tulane University School of Architecture, Richardson Memorial Building, 827-5858; www.zeitgeistinc.net

All the good Ramones are dead, "Lust for Life" is the soundtrack to a commercial for Alaskan cruises, and CBGB's is shuttered for keeps. The ultimate youth movement, punk rock, is now in its 30s — yet like a phoenix in a spiked collar, it seems to rise anew every few years, albeit with new faces, new fashions and new sounds representing it on the cultural screen. Susan Dynner's documentary — and from its title we get her answer — asks whether or not, three decades after the first gob splattered on Johnny Rotten's leather vest, punk rock remains a relevant subculture. From the lineup of bands she looks at, which include Blink-182, Good Charlotte and Sum 41 alongside X, the Buzzcocks and the Circle Jerks, it appears she's not digging too far underground in her inquiry. Still, with fresh acts popping up yearly to crowd willingly under the punk umbrella, and even more to the point, selling records, her investigation into all that is and has been young, loud and snotty deserves a look. Does a black Chuck Taylor high-top on any foot smell as sweet? And is it still punk if you bought your Sham 69 T-shirt at Hot Topic? Tune in and find out. Tickets $7 general admission, $6 students/seniors, $5 Zeitgeist members, free for Tulane students/faculty. — Alison Fensterstock

MUSIC

Screamfest '07 featuring T.I. and Ciara
7 p.m. Fri., Aug. 3
New Orleans Arena, 1501 Girod St., 587-3663

With a title more suited to an event involving horror movies or roller coaster rides, this monster summer tour package must refer to what the fans will be doing for this assembled troupe of up-and-coming hip-hop and R&B superstars. If Essence Fest was for the grown folks, then Screamfest is by all means directed at the young, hot and hip. Sponsored by BET, the past six tours have distinguished themselves by putting young stars on the verge on the top of the bill. Alumni include current million-sellers and Bentley drivers like Ne-Yo, Pretty Ricky and Bow Wow. The show's press includes the guarantee that Screamfest will feature "the newest cell phones, the latest ringtones, the hottest cars and the biggest stars." Atlanta-based rapper T.I., still enjoying that new-Grammy smell for his 2006 collaboration with Justin Timberlake, headlines; his latest record, T.I. VS. T.I.P. , came out July 3. Sharing top billing is R&B vixen Ciara (pictured), who also hails from the ATL. At the tender age of 22, she's already snagged herself a gramophone statuette and garnered guest spots on her albums from stars like Missy Elliott, Ludacris and Lil Jon. Screamfest includes T-Pain, Yung Joc and silky-voiced R&B crooner Lloyd. Tickets $27.50. — Fensterstock

click to enlarge MELISSA NICHOLSON
click to enlarge ae_feat-15832.jpeg
click to enlarge MELISSA NICHOLSON
click to enlarge ae_feat-15832.jpeg
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