(a portion of this piece was published by Planet JH Weekly)
Members from two of my favorite locals bands—Sneaky Pete & the Secret Weapons and Elk Attack (disbanded)—have made a creepy one-off project for the occasion, dubbed Sneak Attack. From the Attack, Dusty Nichols will rips lead guitar alongside frontman vocalist/guitarist (and lead Ghostbuster) Bo Elledge. From the Secret Weapons, Sam Lowenthal thumps the bass while Galen Karnatz will be gluing it all together with synth, organ, and creepy harpsichords. Guest Corey Adelman will bang the drums along with Kate Sullivan helping out on vocals. A big set of Halloween classics are in the setlist (“Monster Mash,” “Thriller,” and “Werewolves of London”) while you compete for the costume contest and try to catch Budweiser swag being thrown from stage. Sneak Attack, 10 p.m. Friday at Town Square Tavern. $5. 733-3886.
One guy, one mask, and it’s not Buckethead. It’s creepier. Slow Magic’s brand of electronic music is manufactured from a single drum and digital triggers, said to be deconstructionist house and futuristic, or according to his booking agency, “it’s joyous, escapist, multi-disciplinary art that mixes transcendent performance with the nostalgic intimacy of two teenagers staying up too late on the phone.” I recommend you focus on the details of your own mask rather than figure out what your imaginary friend Slow Magic is all about. Just know that it’ll be heavy, glitzy and fist-pumping dance friendly. OPENER: Jackson’s own electro-acoustic duo, Head to Head, dove into the local scene just a few months ago with two drum kits, a laptop and a sampler. Avid percussionists, multi-instrumentalists and production gadgeteers, Otto Wieters and Dan Sanford will open the show with their own blend of hip-hop, EDM, funk and ambient. Slow Magic with Head to Head, 9 p.m. at Pink Garter Theatre. $20. PinkGarterTheatre.com, 733-3886.
What has become a yearly tradition at the Silver Dollar, local reggae ensemble Chanman Roots Band will provide a reggae Halloween soundtrack for a costumed batch of revelers. Chanman Roots Band, 7:30 to 11 p.m. Friday (Halloween Party) and Saturday at the Silver Dollar Bar. Costume contest 9-10 p.m. Free. 732-3939.
Young singer-songwriter and talented electric guitarist Wyatt Lowe has single-handedly brought rockabilly music to the local scene. Check out his new band, The Mayhem Kings, who stand to deliver a compelling show in a usually stale venue. Wyatt Lowe and The Mayhem Kings, 9 p.m. at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. Costume contest at 11 p.m. Free. 733-2207.
For a jazzy Hallows’ Eve experience, visit Pam Phillips (piano/vocals) and her trio which includes legendary bassist Bill Plummer as well as Ed Domer on drums. Jazzy Halloween, 7 to 10 p.m. Friday at The Granary. Free. 733-8833.
The Mexican custom of El Dia de los Muertos, “Day of the Dead,” contradicts the U.S. custom of Halloween in which death is “scary.” Instead, the holiday celebrates the memories of the deceased. Get your sugar skulls prepped for Saturday. Dia de los Muertos with DJs Vert-One and Richie Beats, 10 p.m. Saturday at The Rose. Free. 733-1500.
The west side of the Tetons will light up with festive tunes via the Miller Sisters-fronted Mandatory Air, a party band with a Halloween show or two under their belts and a costume closet to prove it. Mandatory Air, 10 p.m. Friday at the Knotty Pine in Victor. $10. 208-787-2866.