.Things to do in Santa Cruz

Week of April 3



ANDY FRASCO & THE UN “Got an armful of wristbands to cover the stars,” Andy Frasco sings on his recent single. “What we used to be is not who we are.” Signed to Fun Machine Records, Frasco and his band are masters of super emotive, hard-charging, introspective rock ‘n’ roll. His 2023 record, L’Optimist, takes his lifelong battle with depression head-on, audaciously asserting optimism in the face of darkness. For those who want to feel all the feels—set to pounding drums and ample power chords, no less—and come out stronger for it, Andy Frasco & the UN provide musical catharsis. ADDIE MAHMASSANI

8pm, Felton Music Hall, 6275 Hwy 9, Felton. $24/adv, $26/door. 704-7113.


secure document shredding


CAGE WORLD A collective space like SubRosa rocks because of how close to the ground they can get with the artists they book. Sometimes the musician or group is well-known, like when Kimya Dawson played to an audience so packed it spilled onto Pacific Avenue. More often, they feature the best new and unknown underground band, soon to be every attendee’s favorite. This will undoubtedly be the case with indie rockers Cage World. Cage World combines the melancholy of shoegaze, the thoughtfulness of post-hardcore and the prowess of ’90s college art rock for songs with an old soul and a new sound. This might be the last chance to see Cage World at an intimate venue. MAT WEIR

6pm, SubRosa, 703 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $10. 426-5254.


MEATBODIES Garage punk meets neo-psychedelia in Meatbodies, helmed by Chad Ubovich. After touring with LA rockers like Mikal Cronin and Ty Segall Ubovich formed Meatbodies in 2014. The album Alice found Ubovich exploring political questions with a loose concept he described at the time as “almost like a made-up scripture.” The band continues to evolve its sound with the triumphant Flora Ocean Tiger Bloom, which was born of a series of disasters in Ubovich’s personal life. Pitchfork writes, “If anyone’s earned the right to check out from reality and indulge in the transcendental properties of psychedelic rock, it’s this dude.” AM

8pm, The Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $18. 429-6994.




Self-ordained Reverend Billy C. Wirtz has pounded the 88s like a whackier version of the great Jerry Lee Lewis for over 44 years. Wirtz is an imaginative purveyor of twisted tales and off-the-wall parodies and has grown his fandom into an international cult of “Snazzyheads.” A steady stream of original albums with titles like Salvation Through Polyester and Unchained Maladies showcases the aggressive absurdity of working as a pro wrestling manager (his past profession). His album Backslider’s Tractor Pull won the American Association of Independent Music’s award for Comedy Album of the Year. Opening the show will be keyboard wizard Bob Malone, a longtime sideman for John Fogerty, Ringo Starr and Avril Lavigne, among others. DAN EMERSON

7:30pm, Kuumbwa Jazz Center,
320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $30. 427-2227.



Connor Wood, best known to the internet as @Fibulaa, has much to say, and people want to hear it. With over 35 million likes and 800 thousand followers, Wood has earned the attention of TikTokkers and IG Reels subscribers alike. His humor appeals to everything Gen Z, with jokes spanning from Adderall shortages to the crazy parking laws of LA and Andrew Scott’s undeniable sex appeal. Wood is tapped into the cultural zeitgeist, and he’s ready to find the humor in it. His tour lands in Santa Cruz after a slew of sold-out appearances across the country. JESSICA IRISH

8pm, Rio Theatre, 1205 Soquel Ave.,
Santa Cruz. $28. 423-1854.




Third Coast Percussion is kicking off the annual April in Santa Cruz Creative Music & Arts Festival at UCSC. The Grammy award-winning quartet will perform the music of composer JLin (Jerrilyn Patton), who has been touted as a revolutionary contemporary composer, and a new work by ultra-modern composer Jay Afrisando. The festival’s theme this year is “A Time for Change,” and the multiday event focuses on various creative styles, including workshops developed for the ensemble’s UCSC residency by composers Rodrigo Barriga and Michael Fleming. DE

7:30pm, UCSC Recital Hall, 402 McHenry Rd., Santa Cruz. Free




For 30 years, Golden Gate Gardening has been the go-to book for urban gardeners in the Bay Area. Don’t believe us? Food journalist and author Michael Pollan once described it as “…indispensable—if you buy one gardening book, this is the one.” The newly revised and expanded edition touches on proper planting techniques, climates and soil, watering and pruning tips, how to naturally fight pests and more. Author Pam Peirce makes a special appearance at the Bookshop Santa Cruz to discuss tactics for creating an optimal small-space garden, with tips and tricks for gardeners old and young, new or experienced. MW

7pm, Bookshop Santa Cruz, 1520 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. Free. 423-0900.




Prepare to groove to the unfiltered music of Fantastic Negrito. Known for displaying a rawness in his music, he meditates on the personal, from surviving a car crash to his interracial grandparents’ love story, and each song intersects themes of survival, space, love, racism, capitalism, history and freedom. Fantastic Negrito plays a form of Black roots, combining older forms of folk and funk with modern technology and sound to create something new. Not one to follow the guides of any one genre, Fantastic Negrito reminds us that we are all born free. ISABELLA MARIE SANGALINE

8pm, Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $26/adv, $30/door. 479-1854.


The BETHS — Photo: Frances Carter

THE BETHS Last year, the Beths opened for the Death Cab for Cutie/Postal Service reunion tour, earning lots of love from the crowd and the man behind the bands himself: Ben Gibbard. It’s not difficult to understand why Gibbard was drawn to the Beths; their sound captures the same energy that Cutie’s Transatlanticism album so brilliantly contained: emotive lyrics, a gritty yet poppy guitar sound and a chorus worth jumping up and down to. With a talented female vocalist lead and plenty of catchy yet moody hooks, the Beths are not to be missed. J

8pm, The Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave.,
Santa Cruz. $27/adv, $32/door. 713-5492.



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