* MAHA Music Festival liked their 2011 move to Aksarben Village so much that they have already confirmed that the 2012 edition of the indie music-focused festival will return to the midtown development, once again centered at Stinson Park, South 67th Street and West Center Road. This year's event is scheduled for Saturday, August 11th, though no acts have been set yet. Last year's edition moved to Aksarben Village after flood concerns forced it from the Lewis & Clark Landing.
* The holidays have a way of bringing far-flung ex-Omaha musicians back in the fold jsut long enough for a show or two. When Matthew Arbeiter left for Brooklyn, The Jazzwholes slowly disappeared from the Omaha scene. But Thanksgiving will bring Arbeiter back to town just long enough for a pre-Turkey Day gig on Wednesday, November 23rd at their old stomping grounds at 1012 South 10th St. What was the Goofy Foot Lodge is now House of Loom, but for a night the venue will revert to its early-to-mid 2000s form with a $3 cover
* Cold War Kids sparkled Monday night at the Slowdown, 729 North 14th St., as they played selections mainly from their first and third albums. By tossing songs from the polished-sounding Mine Is Yours, the four-piece band easily closed the gap between those songs and their more ragged predecessors. The band rocks a rhythmic, bluesy indie rock sound that powers itself on singer Nathan Willett's strangled yelp that still can soar when needed. Opener Young Man didn't break free from their muddled indie rock sound, which was rooted in layered guitar parts. However, the songs didn't bear enough varying dynamics to stand out. It bled together into one big, long song.
* Record Store Day will once again roll out a selection of special titles for the day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday, November 25th has become a big companion to the now-sprawling main event, which falls on April 15, 2012. The big difference between Record Store Day and the Black Friday sale is that some of the Black Friday releases will actually be available throughout the holiday season, meanwhile Record Store Day itself is geared toward releases that come out on that day only.