“Round 1 ... Ready ... Party!” Charlotte’s first bar arcade has made it through that milestone first year, so it’s time to throw down. Their first birthday celebration will feature an outdoor arcade; a pop-up market, grub from food trucks like Mel’s BLT Kitchen; and live music from some of Charlotte’s best bands, including Junior Astronomers, The Eyebrows and Modern Primitives. Who would have thought gaming could be so cool? That’s right, Abari did. Funds raised go to the North Mecklenburg Animal Rescue. $5 suggested donation.
After singer Elijah von Cramon was struck by a car and severely injured in 2013, it looked like Paint Fumes would be sidelined, perhaps permanently. Like a garage-rock Phoenix, they rebounded with their snarling vocals, grimy guitars and reverbed thrash aesthetic derived from the classic punk rock compilation Nuggets intact and undimmed. Their sophomore release, If It Ain’t Paint Fumes It Ain’t Worth a Huff is available on “Puke Swirl” multi-color Starburst vinyl. $5-7
Dollar Signs' Life is Ruff EP Release Party. $8-10
If we were going back to the ’80s in our fantasies, we might choose a stronger lineup: Run-DMC, Salt-N-Pepa, L.L. Cool J, Stetsasonic, Eric B. & Rakim, Queen Latifah. . . Ah, but this isn’t a fantasy concert and we’re not booking it. Besides, you won’t go wrong with the real lineup at this hip-hop nostalgia show: Whodini, Big Daddy Kane, Slick Rick, Force MDs, Al B. Sure! and a few others. Just remember: It was better than this back in the day. $39-103
In the tradition of village idiots and Ken Kesey’s Merry Pranksters, street performer and viral video star Matthew Silver confounds public expectations by acting like a lunatic. He’s the weird bearded guy who runs around in his underwear banging a drum and yelling, “Love is the answer,” and “Stop buying stuff.” By tweaking taboos, Silver parodies excessive seriousness. His mission is to breach people’s armor and open a portal for imagination. Maybe he’s not that crazy after all. $8
A handful of fleet-fingered acoustic guitar slingers excel at classical, jazz, North African or Celtic styles. French-Algerian guitarist Pierre Bensusan plays them all in a fluid and playful blend of traditional and improvisational music that defies categories. Bensusan augments his nimble picking and sensual strumming with genre-jumping bilingual vocals that fuse whistling with resonant low notes. It’s international music for a hopeful future – a soundtrack for a world without borders. $22-25
From The Bomb Squad to The Warlocks to The LOX to D-Block and back to The LOX again, this trio has had things on lock from the jump no matter what they were calling themselves. They were perhaps at their hottest as The LOX, however, when the entire DMX-led Ruff Ryders team was at its prime, so their return to Charlotte under that moniker is only right. Come see the greatest group to ever come out of Yonkers on their Filthy America... It’s Beautiful Tour. $25