As a friend of Adam’s once said regarding the heavy rains that Athens seemingly endure daily, "April showers bring May showers." It’s enough to get one down in the dumps. However, the weather has been beautiful and all the kids have returned to town with a rejuvenated zest in their misdemeanor. And we at the AMS could not be happier. We hope you all enjoyed some time off – but now we return to Athens with a bevy of hot shows that will be sure to make you forget about the nights spent on the beach with frozen drinks and erotic Lambada dancers. Ok enough already. To the music!

This week’s top billing has got to go to the unannounced Tom Petty show at the Convo tonight we’ll see you there for sure! Get your tickets at the Convo box office… first come… first serve.

Tonight, Night Court natives The Don Norman’s will be performing their first show as Night Court’s permanent Thursday band. That’s right, get your blues fill every Thursday at the Court. The Don Norman’s, local blues music veterans, have played many shows over the last few years and continue to provide a solid set of blues standards and favorites. This band has really come around - playing more solidly than ever. After some minor lineup changes, The Don Norman’s are set and play as they are, a reputable and hardworking local music act.

Down at the Swindlefish Saloon, Peach Melba will continue the night’s local music theme. Blending different genres into one unique sound, Melba is heavily into the improvisational aspect of music. Although these guys are set to play all around within the next couple of months we have them locally for tonight. Peach Melba has definitely absorbed a large following over the months and the anticipation is high for their album which is scheduled to be released in May of this year. No word on if their will be an opener for this show– get their early in any event.

Friday is Good Friday, so go have a good time at O’hooleys as the Cactus Pears take their travelling show of ethereal punk and sublime vocal harmonies on the road (well, at least down to Union Street.) This band should not be missed – one of the most solid local acts in town. You can definitely hear the older and edgy REM influence (when they were good) that the Pears have inherited. Mix in that mandolin and cello and the craft takes on a sound of its own. Opening the show will be another original local band known as Martizatic! Martizatic! will play their first of many shows this quarter Friday night before the band calls it quits in June to pursue careers as Calvin Klein underwear models. Martizatic! recently recorded an 8 song demo that will be available at their shows.

The Casa Cantina (..and a few stochastic quirks from the nether-realm) sponsor Friday’s Orchestraville show with special guests-slash-touring buddies The Townies. Both bands shield their eccentric vocal lines with decoratively patterned and discordant guitar and bass styling. These two bands are so complimentary they must have come from the same wacky womb back in the early nineties. If you’ve got a good ear, this is a good show.

Friday at the Union bar and Grille, infallible archetypes ADR indulge your eardrums and stir what is loosely referred to as your psyche to passion peaking proportions. Former Athenians turned Columbusians Bill Wagner and Will Foster’s The Guinea Worms inaugurate this all guitar night.

Cincinnati Funk’n’groovesters Heavy Weather return to Mama Einstein’s Friday. If you’ve never seen this act before, you’re missing out. This six-piece act has a wonderful habit of blending together an entourage of sounds from different genres of music. No matter how they mix it, they always seem to remain on the "groove" end of the musical spectrum. Heavy Weather has been refining their act by playing 15 to 20 gigs per month over the last couple of years. A pace not unlike the frequency with which AMS patron Chip "the Gentile" McIntosh has "Special Guests."

One of Athens favorite Cincinnati imports Homunculus stops into Mama Einstein’s (formerly the Dugout) to share their wonderfully constructed original music. The boys of Homunculus have been likened to the brain-child of The Beatles, The Meters and Frank Zappa. This means they would have to blend good rock music, with vocal harmonies, with some funky escapades, with resilient personalities and all around craziness. Well, that’s exactly what these boys do –moving with the greatest of ease from a quirkily arranged rocker that makes you want to dance to a beautifully crafted ballad that will make you feel pensive and solemn. Not much else to say except that Homunculus is fun, solid and extremely talented. Opening up for the out-of-towners will be localizers Martizatic! who move with agility from their original rock music laced with Latin and jazz grooves, to the occasional Public Enemy cover.

Saturday, the Union hosts the Swillhouse Boys as they play their first headliner EVER! Relative newbies The Giddyup Jesus play second with The Wholigans opening. The Wholigans are mostly a Who tribute band though they whip out a few other appropriate covers to keep you on yer toes.

Also Saturday, the Casa Cantina showcases the talents of the very dynamic duo, Laurie Rose Griffith and Peter Mealy. Special guests on the bill include Bruce Dalzell, Kent Ippolito, Billie Rhinehart and "Spider" Bruce. We picked up a copy of Bruce Dalzell’s new CD, "The sound of one fan clapping" and suggest you do the same… unless of course you’re Doctor has prescribed a strict diet of heavy amphetamines.

Noble Experiment takes over the stage at the Swindlefish this Saturday night. The last time these guys played there was Dad’s weekend and boy was it a packed house. The Experiment blend classic rock covers with classic rockish originals. The first of many shows for these guys in the upcoming months.

Power trio The Brain Police will be patrolling Mama Einstein’s this Monday evening. Unfortunately, we don’t know too much about this act except that Bobby Lane, host of the Mama Einstein’s open stage, is a member. Concocting improvisational lyrics on top of music that is incredibly unexplainable, The Brain Police are pleasantly interesting and dissonant at the same time. And the best part is you never know what you are gonna hear. Yet, it is always refreshing. Specifically watch for sampled drumbeats along with a live kit, underneath two bass guitars.

Start your humpday eve off with a double dose vim and vinegar this Tuesday at The Union. Seize the moment and see Geraldine before they leave for a spring tour. Geraldine recently got the musical equivalent of a nose job. Now that the bandages are off, it’s clear that they’ve now got a nice new nose… or drummer… whatever. Don’t let poor writing keep you from seeing the new lineup though. They open for Estrus records’ The Quadrajets, a leisurely challenged 3-guitar band with a hectic touring schedule and a serious case of the Southern-fried rock’n’roll garage blues.

Also Tuesday night Mama Einstein’s will feature local act Uncle Feely Hands. These guys came on to the scene this past winter and have already managed to secure themselves a weekly spot at Mama’s. UFH is known primarily for their acoustic renditions of some of your favorite covers.

Oh yeh, it’s April fools day, and we were kidding about the big Tom Petty show could’ve been fun? Maybe he’ll show up at one of the many looming spring street fests… with Puff Daddy… well see you at the shows. Buy us beer!