Alternative Histories; Coffin Cuties; Steve Hackett; Off The Record XIII; Jana Kramer (CPs Thurs. 10/10/13)

1) In Matthew Buchholz’s version of history, Medieval Europe was plagued by zombies, pre-war Japan was attacked by a giant bug monster with laser eyes, and turn-of-the-century Pittsburghers frequently encountered the sea monsters that dwelt beneath the three rivers. The local illustrator’s Alternative Histories postcards (a popular item at Lawrenceville’s Wild Card) resemble the visual art of the eras they depict (woodcut-like images for the medieval scene, a Kanō school-style drawing for the bug attack, an old-timey map for the Steel City sea monster, etc.), but with the addition of a fantastical being or two. It’s like an art history book but much more awesome. Buchholz has compiled these postcards into a book and tonight at Brillobox is holding a release party that will also include a “monster a go-go” dance party, featuring zany music set to b-movie clips screened on giant TVs. 9 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield.

2) Baltimore’s Mike Hearse has come up with the ultimate product to leave in your bedroom if you want to scare the hell out of your parents. His pin-up magazine Coffin Cuties offers a variety of vampire girls, she-wolves, and sexy zombies. A perusal of the magazine’s Web site uncovered a pair of scowling, black lingerie-clad vixens with horns and a fishnet-wearing beauty slurping from a blood bag. Trundle Manor, a Swissvale “art house” that stocks antique weapons, taxidermied animals, and archaic medical devices, thinks Hearse’s macabre take on cheesecake photography is gallery-worthy and is hosting an opening reception for his month-long exhibit tonight. There’s a prize for the best “costumed cutie,” if you happen to have both sexy heels and zombie makeup. 7 p.m. 7724 Juniata St.

3) Though guitarist Steve Hackett has played in a variety of bands, worked as a session musician for countless artists, and has 23 solo albums to his name, he will always be best known for his work with the ’70s-era, Peter Gabriel-led Genesis. Hackett has put a new spin on those progressive rock classics with the double disc Genesis Revisited II (a sequel to 1996’s Genesis Revisited). With his insane mastery of the guitar, Hackett can play any one song an infinite number of ways, which is what he will be doing when he visits the Carnegie Library Music Hall tonight. 7:30 p.m. 510 E. 10th Ave., Munhall.

4) From our unique dialect and awful drivers to those toilets in our basements, there is plenty in Pittsburgh to crack jokes about. (Though not the football team — we take that very seriously.) Today, the local actors and newscasters who know the city will satirize it for the 13th annual Off the Record benefit at the Byham Theatre. Proceeds from the show, which is titled “All the Burgh’s a Stage!” go to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank to tackle an issue that is no laughing matter, though feel free to yuck it up tonight. 8 p.m. 101 6th St., Cultural District.

5) Girl-next-door-ish brunette beauty Jana Kramer, known for her role on The CW drama “One Tree Hill,” is also a country singer. Her self-entitled debut dropped last year. Come to Stage AE tonight for a sample of her talents that go beyond the ability to play a high school student well into her late 20s. 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore.

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Nick Keppler

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