By Reed Fischer
By Anna Gulbrandsen
By Jeff Gage
By Stacy Schwartz
By Natalie Gallagher
By Erik Thompson
By Jeff Gage
By Loren Green
THE UNSOLVED RAPE and murder of Mia Zapata of Seattle rock band The Gits was almost three years ago. But its aftermath has spurred on a nationwide movement of sorts. Two notable results have been Evil Stig--the thunderous Gits side project fronted by kindred spirit Joan Jett--and a recent benefit album for the self-defense organization Home Alive, featuring 45 West Coast artists. On the home front, Sony Music college rep/U of M senior Heather Donovan has organized a Home Alive-inspired benefit at the Whole Music Club on Friday, featuring The Kelley Deal 6000, The Wonsers, February, June Sunday, Tot 50 and Sheep Kickers. In conjunction with the U of M's Women's Week, all proceeds from the show will benefit the campus's Program Against Sexual Violence. (By the way, the 6000's self-released CD, Go to the Sugar Altar, is now available.) All ages. Music at 8 p.m. Whole Music Club (underground at Coffman Union), 300 Washington Ave. S.E., Mpls., 624-8638. (Groebner)
THE MUSICS OF Leonard and Barbara Cohen (no relation) will fill First Avenue and 7th Street Entry this Friday. Mean Larry and Friends--a crew which includes some of the folks who brought you the local J.C. Superstar remake--now return to "Chelsea Hotel," their tribute to Canada's heaviest (and oldest?) bohemian beat poet. Major pop stars have tried at least twice to honor Leonard Cohen's music, with 1991's I'm Your Fan (Atlantic) and last year's Tower of Song (A&M) (not to mention Jennifer Warnes's collection of Cohen songs, Famous Blue Raincoat), and like the work of kindred Minnesota poet Bob Dylan, it lends itself well to interpretation. Cohen covers such as "Who By Fire" have been a part of Larry's gigs for years; on Friday, JC Superstar vocalist Jay Davis makes a cameo, and the "The Ladies of Mean Larry" (Diane Martinson, Sara Olson, Lori Jacobson) are featured on "Sisters of Mercy." This will be a revised replay of the February 3rd performance, which drew a fair number of folks on a night marked by wind chills near 50 below. Showtime 7:30 p.m. $4/$6 at the door. First Avenue mainroom, 701 First Ave. N., Mpls; 740-3093.
You've heard of the fifth Beatle; now meet the fifth Lizard. Percussionist Marc Anderson of Eight Head--once thought to have left Barb Cohen's group Little Lizard for good--has returned to the fold at least part time, adding electronic percussion and sound samples. Barb herself has purchased a '52 Telecaster reissue, and cellist Jacqueline Ultan was toying with some new sonic effects at the band's St. Patty's Day show at First Ave. The more electrified Little Lizard quintet makes its reentry at 7th Street Entry Friday. Chicago country-folk combo Gringo plays the middle set. Locals Best Fight Story open. Music about 9:30; 338-8388.
Finally, it's last chance for Chicago's polyrhythmic punkers Trenchmouth, at least in their current lineup. Drum genius Fred Armisen is leav-
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ing the group, though the remaining members, including frontman Damon Locks, will carry on with a new drummer. The band has another LP due out soon on Skene after a brief stint on East/West, and they'll deliver their Minneapolis farewell with two shows Thursday. The early all-ager features Arm and Calvin Krime. The later drunk punk show features Lifter Puller and Madison's White. Thursday, 7th Street Entry, 701 First Ave. N., Mpls.; 338-8388. (Meyer)
WITH THE DEAD Reckoning showcase and the Guy Clark/Townes Van Zandt tour swinging through town (see A-List), it's a great week for alternative country. Those so inclined should also note the The Mavericks/Junior Brown double bill at the Orpheum on Friday ($20-$27; 8 p.m.; 339-7007), which should let out just in time for hardcore fans to get over to Bunker's for the Dead Reckoning party. Also, the much-loved Blue Mountain bring their boy-girl brand of Neil Young-influenced country-rock to the Uptown on Saturday for one of the club's final shows. Music starts around 10 p.m.; call 823-4719 to confirm. Oh yeah--I almost forgot young honky-tonk traditionalist Wayne "The Train" Hancock, who'll be at the 400 Bar Thursday night. That's another one from roots music booker Nate Dungan, who deserves big props for keepin' it real.
Meanwhile, Bill Miller's name is all that's ordinary about the Americana singer/songwriter from Wisconin's Stockbridge-Munsee reservation. His latest, Raven in the Snow (Reprise), is an uncategorizable mix of smart Triple-A pop and meditative tribal rhythms, with strong echoes of Dylan's best '70s stuff. Slim Dunlap opens the show Sunday at the Fine Line Music Cafe ($8/$10 at the door; 9:30 p.m.; 338-8100). (Hermes/Meyer) CP
Junior Brown returns Friday.