Mastodon and Eagles of Death Metal Play Stage AE; Regional Premiere of ‘Perks of Being a Wallflower’ at Prime Stage (Fri., 5/12/17)

1) In 1909, a contractor working along the banks of the Allegheny River found a mastodon’s tusk. Tonight, another Mastodon roams the banks of the Allegheny. Wandering north from Atlanta, Georgia (most other mastodons went south), this one is a progressive sludge metal band. Instead of ending up trapped in a tar pit, Mastodon can be found writhing at the edge of a mosh pit. The band’s 2004 release, Leviathan, was based on the novel Moby-Dick and named album of the year by several music publications. Its latest release is this year’s Emperor of Sand. Joining Mastodon on tour are the Eagles of Death Metal. They never took themselves too seriously: the hipster mustaches, the outrageous album titles, the fact that they don’t play death metal. Then the Bataclan terrorist attack happened in Paris, and the Eagles of Death Metal saw themselves in headlines in a way that no band ever wants to see. The members survived, and undeterred, they played Paris again; first with U2 and later at L’Olympia. Russian Circles also open. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Stage AE, 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore. (RH/CM)

2) As you read Stephen Chbosky’s epistolary novel, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, you get the sense that something is off with its protagonist, Charlie. Intuiting this doesn’t make the final reveal any less crushing in this must-read for all suburban high school students. Charlie navigates sex, drugs, and a winter-themed mixtape. The book employs plenty of lighter moments too, like when Charlie learns how to drive or when he and his friends attend The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Chbosky is from Pittsburgh, and his book shines with landmarks, including “infinite” rides through the Fort Pitt Tunnel. A film version, starring Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, and Ezra Miller, was released in 2012. The movie was filmed in Pittsburgh, and the scenes involving The Rocky Horror Picture Show were shot at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont. Prime Stage is staging the regional premier of the stage version at the New Hazlett Theater. 6 Allegheny Square East, North Side. 8 p.m. Tonight is an audio described performance. Runs through May 14. (CM)

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Rick Handler

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