* Digital Leather's Shawn Foree and Worried Mothers' David Hansen have combined forces to create Diode. The first taste of the band is "Peck on the Lips", an industrial noise-rock collage with processed vocals, programmed drums and just a dash of synthesizer. Check out the song on YouTube. Meanwhile, the band is tentatively planning to release a full-length on Crash Symbols, though no concrete release date is set.
* Halloween is closer than you think and OmahaNightOutGuide.com is putting on a benefit Friday, October 18 at the Slowdown, 729 North 14th St., to help get you in the mood. The Creatures of the Night Costume Ball is a benefit for the Open Door Mission, featuring a headline performance by Kansas City KISS tribute act, Almost KISS. The act even appeared on Gene Simmons' reality show. In addition to Almost KISS, Surreal the MC and Bride of the Monster will perform at this show. Bride of the Monster will play right into the pre-Halloween vibe, as they cover acts like Alice Cooper, Rob Zombie, Wednesday 13 and the Misfits.
* If a recent weekend in Minneapolis is any indication, Omaha is not far behind that metropolis when it comes to high quality touring shows. Or maybe Minneapolis' concert calendar was consumed whole by the all-encompassing opening weekend of the Minnesota State Fair. Either way, the show calendar was highlighted by a packed-house show by hometown Domino Records-signee Night Moves. I did however catch crude, dirty R&B legend Andre Williams at Lee's Liquor Lounge, a grimy, dicey bar in the shadow of downtown Minneapolis' baseball stadium. The lounge came decked out in Elvis Presley regalia and vintage beer signs. Williams meanwhile started with his dirtiest and therefore best material like 50s smolderer "Jailbait" and latter day favorite "Car With a Star". But the set settled down into a bluesier groove afterwards. Oh, and the crowd danced and moved from first note to the last, instead of folding over into complacency. That's a lesson that Omaha's rock crowds could use.