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What to Know Before You Go


Café Tacuba
8 p.m. Tue., Dec. 11
House of Blues, 225 Decatur St., 310-4999;

Formed in Mexico City in the late '80s, the rock en Espanol quartet Café Tacuba fuses classic American rock 'n' roll with traditional Mexican norteño and ranchero styles for a thoroughly original, upbeat sound. Elements of the Clash's revolutionary rock are audible, as are the lusher tones of early Goth acts like the Smiths and the Cure, as they deftly warm up the chilly romance and rude-boy angst of British punk rock with south-of-the-border heat. The group's bag of tricks goes even deeper; it occasionally plays with Mexican folk violinist Alejandro Flores and includes elements of electronica and hip-hop in the mix. Porter, a Mexican experimental indie-rock outfit with heavy Radiohead influences, opens. Tickets $23.50. — Fensterstock



How Santa Got His Groove Back
8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Dec. 14-15, 3 p.m. Sun., Dec. 16; through Dec. 23
Anthony Bean Community Theater, 1333 S. Carrollton Ave., 862-7529;

With so many things wrong in the world, sometimes it's hard for even Santa to get into the holiday spirit. That's the problem at the root of How Santa Got His Groove Back, the Anthony Bean Theater company's first Christmas play. Santa is so bummed out by the state of the world that he refuses to deliver any toys to kids. To break Santa out of his funk, his elves bring a group of children to meet him, with the hope that they can change his mind. With family-oriented hip-hop music and dancing, the boys and girls deliver a reality check about the true meaning of Christmas. Written and directed by Anthony Bean and choreographed by Arieuna McGee, this premiere production features more than 35 young actors, singers and dancers, as well as veteran Santa Claus Ernest Pedigrew. Tickets $18 adults, $14 children. — Netherly



Arson Anthem with Rigor Mortis
10 p.m. Sat., Dec. 15
One Eyed Jacks, 615 Toulouse St., 569-8361;

Helmets should come with the cost of the ticket for this four-band assault of powerhouse metal, because there's going to be a lot of headbanging. The headliner, Arson Anthem (pictured), is a supergroup that emerged from the wreckage of Hurricane Katrina. Mike Williams of Eyehategod and Outlaw Order fame took up residence in ex-Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo's spare apartment after the storm and the two gorged themselves on early hardcore records. Then they hooked up with country music's black sheep Hank III (with whom Anselmo played in the recently defunct act Superjoint Ritual), and the speedy, hammering retro metal of Arson Anthem was the result. They're joined by Texas thrash pioneers Rigor Mortis, which features ex-members of Ministry, Gwar and the Revolting Cocks, plus the raw Memphis speed-metal act Evil Army and the churning prog-metal of If He Dies, He Dies. Just in time for the holidays. Tickets $16 in advance, $20 at the door. — Fensterstock

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