It seems that whenever it gets hot in Santa Cruz the weirder and more interesting aspects of the city thaw out and put on an extra special display. Whether it’s the talented buskers on Pacific Ave, the humans and animals shredding it up in the ocean or our local characters, people wanna come see what’s going on. This week the musicians are looking to capitalize on that crowd, so step inside a venue a cool off for a bit with a chart-topping French pop star, some psychedelic surf rock bands, and human-sized animals with a heartfelt musical message. See you out there.


Wednesday, April 20

People Under The Stairs at The Catalyst

Since their formation in 1997, P.U.T.S has released 7 studio albums, and constantly toured the country building one of the most critically acclaimed hip-hop sets of the last two decades. Operating in the same vein as groups like Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul, the group works with jazzy tunes sampled from rare soul and funk albums, coupled with a unique lyrical style. Expect an awesome and intimate performance, with plenty of “date related” celebration from fans and artists alike. They will be joined by Eliquate.

Show at 9pm. Tickets $21 in advance/$25 at the door.

Friday, April 22

Watergate Sandals at The Crepe Place

While their social media lists “@nickelback” as their main influence and their genre as “SCOOTER ROCK” (the all-caps really gets their point across), this showcases their sense of humor more than their sound. These up-and-coming locals are a little bit country and a lot surf rock, topped off with some of that synthy garage band roll. They will be joined by Crush and Our Dad Loves Bikes.

Show at 9pm. Tickets $8 at the door.

Friday, April 22

Surfrider Foundation Benefit featuring The Mermen at Moe’s Alley

Easily one of the most eclectic groups to emerge from the surf music revival of the early 90’s is Bay Area band The Mermen. Founded in 1989 in a record shop in San Francisco, The Mermen rose to local fame on the backs of their catchy surf-themed radio anthems and by encouraging anyone and everyone to tape their shows to spread the music around. The Mermen will be doing their spaced out psychedelic surf rock set in order to benefit the local Santa Cruz chapter of The Surfrider Foundation.

Show at 9pm. Tickets $12 in advance/$15 at the door.

Friday, April 22

The Frogman Experience at The Blue Lagoon

This unique local act is making waves wherever they and their costumes show up, and the love is well-deserved. If you want a more in-depth look, check out our interview with The Frog himself. Says the band, “The Frogman Experience is a group of conscientious friends who make music to inspire positive thoughts and personal transformation. Our original songs guide listeners through stories of adventure, light vs. dark and personal growth; the tales are told by mythical creatures to emphasize the importance of our connection to nature. Live shows feature skits and songs of multiple genres and moods; everything from mellow ambiance to dance party funkiness to raging dissonance. While no one genre can categorize the full experience, the band has been called “theatrical funk”: a name as good as any.” They will be joined by Light The Band.

Show at 9pm. Tickets $5 at the door.

Saturday, April 23

M83 at The Catalyst

After crossing over from France, Anthony Gonzalez parked himself in LA and decided to try and make it in one of the most competitive music scenes in the world. In 2011 he released “Hurry up, We’re Dreaming”, which subsequently dominated the worldwide dance and pop charts. The top single “Midnight City” took on a life of its own, eventually going platinum and solidifying a spot in the American mainstream. After a few years of relative silence, Gonzalez’s newest album “Junk” is already climbing the charts and proving he’s not done with us yet.

Show starts at 9pm. Tickets are sold out via The Catalyst but are available on StubHub and other outlets for $37.