A change in venue for Heliotrope 8 doesn't mean a change in the altered-state mania. The annual three-day marathon, which started Thursday, demonstrates the madcap wizardry as well as the rich musicality in the Twin Cities' rich psychedelic/experimental/free-form scene. Friday's lineup includes violin-laced rockers Mother of Fire, haze meisters Daughters of the Sun, Tender Meat, a Metzger/Linz/Bates mash-up, Milo Fine and visiting guests Joe McPhee and Chris Corsano, who have a new sax/drums collaboration on Roaratorio. Saturday includes Heliotrope vets Skoal Kodiak, Votel (ex-H.U.N.X.), Thunderbolt Pagoda and more freaky stuff. A free compilation CD comes with admission. (6 p.m. Thu.-Sat., Loring Theater. All ages. $12 daily, $24 three-day pass.) Chris Riemenschneider


Can emo age gracefully? Arizona's Jimmy Eat World, emo mainstays since the 1990s, is trying to mature on 2010's "Invented," but it sounds like they've outgrown the genre they helped pioneer. Let's hope they look back to 2001's "Bleed American." Civil Twilight opens. (7 p.m. Fri., First Avenue, $25.) Jon Bream

The Twin Cities' favorite stoner-rock throwback act, Little Man turns up the fuzz, haze and sheer electricity on its new EP, "Orbital Amusement." Frontman/namesake Chris Perricelli channels everyone from Foghat and Big Star to Smashing Pumpkins and Queens of the Stone Age on the five-song collection, recorded in Libertyville, Ill., with Ed Tinley of the Ike Reilly Assassination. Release-party festivities will include special "Cosmonettes" dancers and opening sets by two other mighty local favorites, Red Pens and the Rockford Mules. (9 p.m. Fri., Turf Club. $8.) Riemenschneider

Yet another Canadian band that never lived up to its hype stateside, Halifax power-popsters Sloan were signed to Geffen Records in the early '90s and compared to the likes of Blur and Teenage Fanclub. They've maintained a cult following and an infectious sound for the new Yep Roc release, "The Double Cross." (9 p.m. Fri., 400 Bar. 18 & older.) Riemenschneider

Jason Isbell has been steadily trucking since leaving the Drive-By Truckers, assembling his own soulful twang-rock band (the 400 Unit) and now finally issuing another record as stellar as his 2008 solo debut. Titled "Here We Rest," the new disc offers more heartening portraits of a Southern culture on the skids and some mighty potent guitar work. It's gotten to where Isbell can play fewer DBT tunes if he wants, we won't mind. Maria Taylor opens. (9 p.m. Sat., Turf Club. $14.) Riemenschneider

Back from a long hiatus and relocated for convenience, 93X Fest was a staple of Memorial Day weekend in the early '00s. Instead of campsites and mud in Somerset, Wis., you get the bleachers and green grass of the Saints' ballpark in this welcome reincarnation, plus a grand-slamming lineup of some of the station's favorite headbangers. "Awake" hitmakers Godsmack are back from their own late-'00s hiatus to headline. Also performing are Hollywood Undead, Zakk Wylde's Black Label Society, Puddle of Mudd, Queensrÿche, All That Remains, Escape the Fate and New Medicine. (1 p.m. Sat., Midway Stadium, St. Paul. $40.) Riemenschneider

The Doobie Brothers merged rock, pop, boogie and folk into classic 1970s good-time music. When Michael McDonald signed on, the band added the slick jazzy soulfulness of "What a Fool Believes." He's no longer on board but longtimers Michael Hossack, Tom Johnston, Patrick Simmons and John McFee are still around to deliver "Listen to the Music," "China Grove" and "Long Train Runnin'." (8 p.m. Sat., Treasure Island Casino, $38-$48.) Bream

After solidly living up to British press hype for their 2006 debut, Sheffield's scrappy mod rockers the Arctic Monkeys have been on a steady tear, especially as a rowdy, all-go live act. Their sweetly named fourth album, "Suck It and See," lands Tuesday with yet more buzz behind it. Openers the Vaccines are where the Monkeys were in '06, buoyed by the smirkingly catchy single "Post Break-Up Sex." Shoegazer-ish à la Jesus & Mary Chain and anthemic like U2 (for whom they open next month), they proved their charm at South by Southwest but might have to liven things up in this opening slot. (7 p.m. Sat., First Avenue. Sold out.) Riemenschneider

KQRS has turned to Illinois to fill Rock Stock. Chicago's Styx still does bombastic rock even though frontman Dennis DeYoung left a dozen years ago and guitarist/singer Tommy Shaw is doing bluegrass on the side. No one does power pop better than Rockford's Cheap Trick, which has guitarist Rick Nielsen's son Daxx sitting in on drums for nontouring member Bun E. Carlos. Minneapolis' own Lamont Cranston Band, which has been around longer than either of those two headliners, lends some gritty blues to the bill, and Joey Molland's latest incarnation of Badfinger brings classic Brit-pop. (2 p.m. Sun., Midway Stadium, $40-$200.) Bream

California singer/songwriter Brett Dennen has a boyish face and a beguilingly sunny sound. But he marries sad words with those cheery sounds. On his fourth album, 2011's "Loverboy," he offers the jaunty "Dancing at a Funeral," the reggae-meets-soul "Can't Stop Thinking" and the perkily soulful "Must Be Losing My Mind." He's introspective but never inaccessible. (7:30 p.m. Sun., Pantages Theatre, $24.) Bream

Fresh from an all-star tribute to hippie icon Wavy Gravy in New York, Jackson Browne brings his solo show to the Twin Cities. This is a makeup date for the Rock Hall of Famer's 11th-hour cancellation on May 4 due to throat problems. Tickets from that show will be honored. (7 p.m. Sun., State Theatre, $54-$64.) Bream

The last of three incarnations of G.G. Allin's old band the Murder Junkies arrives on Memorial Day, memorializing their notorious former bandleader. They recently toured with Hank III and just put out a new album, "Road Killers." In case you're not clued into the debauchery here, Virgin Whores is one of the opening bands. (9 p.m. Mon., Triple Rock. $10.) Riemenschneider

One of the few Memorial Day music events that's actually about honoring the military, the Veterans Aid Concert is put on by Iraq War vet and reputable local songwriter Matthew Griswold to benefit the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans and spotlight the issues veterans face in transition and recovery. The show will feature a Memorial Day ceremony with color guard, guest speakers and more music from Sasha Mercedes, Jistoray's Carl Torgerson and Steve Parry. (6 p.m. Mon., Fine Line. 18 & older. $10. Free for military.) Riemenschneider

With "Glee Live," there's no Coach Sylvester or Mr. Schu (he has his own tour). But Lea Michele, Darren Criss and all the kids from those best-selling "Glee" cast albums will be there -- both in costume and in character -- for all the Gleeks who won't stop believin'. (7:30 p.m. Wed., Target Center, $51.50-$91.50.) Bream

Farewell Continental doesn't stand much of a chance upstaging Minneapolis rock star Justin Pierre's other band, Motion City Soundtrack, especially as a live act. The new quartet plays more of an introverted, shoegazerly style of fuzz-rock compared with MCS' explosive, polished sounds. Hardly just a lo-fi side project, though, the group's Ed Ackerson-produced debut, "¡Hey, Hey Pioneers!" features finely crafted guitar crescendoes and sophisticated boy/girl counter-melodies co-helmed by Pierre's new singing partner Kari Gray. The band also features former Small Towns Burn a Little Slower members Thomas Rehbein and Josh McKay. They're back home between tour treks to both coasts. (9 p.m. Thu., Triple Rock. 18 & older. $13.) Riemenschneider


Probably the hottest young Cajun band since Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys and equally adept at rocking a dance hall, the Pine Leaf Boys literally have Louisiana music in their blood. Singer/accordionist Wilson Savoy is the son of bayouland heritage specialists Marc and Ann Savoy, and fiddler Courtney Granger is a descendant of Dewey Balfa. They jammed with Steve Earle on HBO's "Treme" and pretty well rule the Fais Do-Do stage at Jazz Fest every year. Let's make their show here an annual thing. (8 p.m. Fri., Cedar Cultural Center. All ages. $15-$18.) Riemenschneider

Last seen in town hitting on girls a third his age during the Deep Blues Fest, 90-year-old Mississippi blues vet T-Model Ford is coming back courtesy of Deep Blues organizer Chris Johnson, who now runs an authentic Southern-barbecue joint in the former home of the Bayport Cookery. The setting should enhance the gritty, rural flavor of the real-life James Lewis Carter Ford, who went from working on a chain gang a few decades ago to recording for Fat Possum Records in the '90s and playing last year's All Tomorrow's Parties festival at the behest of Jim Jarmusch. He's here with Seattle-based backers GravelRoad for two days and will be part of Bayport's Memorial Day parade Monday afternoon. (8 p.m. Sun. & 1 p.m. Mon., Bayport BBQ, 328 5th Av. N., Bayport. Free.) Riemenschneider

Though they have a banjo player and recycle classic Appalachian material, the popular quintet Crooked Still often sounds silky-smooth enough to fit into adult-alternative radio. Their crossover appeal starts with Aiofe O'Donovan, who may remind you of Alison Krauss -- her vocals are just as pure, and warmer. Krauss is enough of a fan that she recently recorded O'Donovan's song "Lay My Burden Down." The other unique element is the prominent presence of a cello, and the lack of a guitar. This ain't your father's RV-drivin' bluegrass. (7:30 p.m. Wed., Cedar Cultural Center, $18-$20.) Tom Surowicz


New York tenor sax mainstay Eric Alexander makes his annual Memorial Day weekend visit with a new CD to showcase. "Don't Follow the Crowd" is full of choice surprises, including a Michael Jackson cover ("She's Out of My Life"), and a hard-swinging take on "Cavatina," from the soundtrack of "The Deer Hunter." The CD's title song is an obscure yet beautiful early 1960s ballad by Bill Lee, the bassist dad of filmmaker Spike Lee. Alexander's great big sound is captured well by the legendary engineer Rudy Van Gelder, and that sound is even more impressive in person. (8:30 & 10:30 p.m. Fri.-Sat., 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. Sun., Artists' Quarter. $18.) Surowicz

The International Trumpet Guild's 2011 Conference, happening right here in the Land of Lakes, concludes with two late-night blowing parties. Dave Matthews Band trumpeter Rashawn Ross, a native of the Virgin Islands, is the straw boss of Friday's jam session while Joey Pero, an upstate New York native who toured a bit with Maynard Ferguson's Big Bopp Nouveau band, hosts the Saturday finale. (11 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Dakota Jazz Club. $5.) Surowicz

The Yellowjackets are celebrating their 30th anniversary in a number of ways. They have a new label deal with Mack Avenue Records, a fresh CD called "Timeline" (with a guest appearance by charter member/guitarist Robben Ford) and a commemorative tour including a two-night stand in Minneapolis. Trumping all that is the return of drummer Will Kennedy, who was a Yellowjacket for a decade starting in the late 1980s, before leaving to do TV, film and R&B work. He joins founders Russell Ferrante (keyboards) and Jimmy Haslip (bass), plus big band sax great Bob Mintzer, who signed on two decades ago. (7 & 9 p.m. Mon.-Tue., Dakota Jazz Club, $25-$35.) Surowicz


The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra is wrapping up its season with a trio of terrific programs that bear the stamp of artistic partner Thomas Zehetmair, all combining Haydn with 20th-century fare. The first of the series features the incomparable Swiss oboist Heinz Holliger in music by Elliott Carter and, together with harpist-spouse Ursula Holliger, of their countryman Frank Martin. Zehetmair dons his violinist's hat for a performance, with three SPCO principals, of Haydn's "Emperor" Quartet, and wields the baton in the marvelous Symphony No. 99. (8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Ordway Center. $5-$40.) Larry Fuchsberg