Frontier Ruckus Causes One at Club Café; MellowHigh at Mr. Smalls (CPs Wed., 12/4/2013)

1) Get the heartland feel with bluegrass-meets-indie rock band Frontier Ruckus at Club Café. The Michigan natives experiment with traditional bluegrass riffs, contemporary rhythms, and, seemingly, an Oxford English Rhyming Dictionary (if one exists) for a distinct twist of ingredients as refreshing as Cherry Coke. The manipulation of the 3/4 waltz time in “Dealerships” adds a haunting love-story feel to the nostalgic lyrics. Frontier Ruckus seem to embrace their suburban upbringing and fond memories of their 1990s childhoods, which is a contrast to the rural love typical of bluegrass and urban romance seen in indie rock. Suburbanites, unite! Or just enjoy some good music. We may even get a teaser of their upcoming album, Eternity of Dimming, set to be released in January. Radio Days and Chris Hannigan warm up the crowd for this performance. 8 p.m. 56-58 S. 12th St., South Side.

2) Artistic genius comes in many forms, and one of those forms is MellowHigh, who’s performing at Mr. Smalls tonight. A side project of MellowHype, MellowHigh presents a unique musical combination of mellow, hype, and high. We get the mellow from Left Brain’s composing skills, hype from Hodgy Beats’ lyrics, and the high from Domo Genesis’ creative rhyming juices. Their self-titled album debuted at 89 on the Billboard 200, elevating them to mainstream success. While the themes of their music encompass commonly used topics in rap (money, women, and maybe some semi-legal smoking, depending on the state), the beats are unprecedented and the lyrics impressive. These boys embody the future of rap, and that future looks pretty amazing. Special guests include Tairey, Norman Dean, Palermo Stone, and Crystal Seth. 8 p.m. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale.

3) Feel the holiday spirit at Overly’s Country Christmas at the Westmoreland County Fairgrounds. Enjoy an old-fashioned Christmas and the simpler things in life, including Christmas caroling, model trains, and horse-drawn carriage rides. Kids can have a picture with Santa and find some unique treats in the General Store. The Christmas Village includes an impressive light display, a wishing well, and a nativity scene with live farm animals. Enjoy homemade fudge from the Sweete Shop, and warm up with some hot apple cider. Overly’s also strives to help our less fortunate neighbors Share the Magic, where donations may earn you a discount into Christmas Village. Runs through Jan. 1. 5:30 – 9 p.m. 116 Blue Ribbon Ln., Greensburg.

4) All aboard! Experience some holiday magic like you’ve never seen at Rangos Omnimax Theater at the Carnegie Science Center with The Polar Express. The film follows the adventure of a young boy and his journey to the North Pole on a surreal steam engine. Filled with twists, turns, and surprises, this new holiday classic is sprinkled with just enough Christmas magic to bring out our inner child. Runs through Jan. 1. See the website for showtimes. 1 Allegheny Ave., North Shore.

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Jessica Dayhoff

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