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The call of the wildcore

Boston and its environs are awash in funk-metal tonight. But if you want something new, something local, and something multicultural along with your plunging bass lines and screaming guitars, you should check out ESO, formerly known as Esoteriqa (just like KFC was formerly known as Kentucky Fried Chicken). These fellas are (clockwise from top left): Guitarist German Schauss, bassist Katz Goto, vocalist Star, guitarist Tak Tanaka, and drummer David Cowan. ESO, which has an album due out in January, describes its music as "wildcore" and itself as "the orgy love child of . . . Hendrix, Rage Against the Machine, Ozzy, Living Colour, KISS, and Bad Brains." The group plays with Silencio and Secondary Mind at the Sky Bar in Somerville. The music starts at 9; tickets are $5. It's 21-plus.

518 Somerville Ave., Somerville, 617-623-5223.

Not dead yet

Go! has to respect any band whose mantra is a two-word chant indicating that said band, er, stinks. And Go! has to respect a band on a concert jaunt called "Tour de Fromage," a title that fondly reminds us of Monty Python's "Cheese Shop" sketch. Go! also has to respect any band promoting a 12-year-old album by playing the darned thing start to finish during the second half of the show, not that it hasn't been done before. (Cheap Trick played its first three albums on consecutive nights five years ago at the Paradise.) So hats off to Primus -- the madcap, antipop bunch led by bassist-singer Les Claypool -- which checks into the Orpheum Theatre tonight and tomorrow night. (The latter show is sold out.) Primus, which was on the verge of breaking up not long ago, is promising a multimedia production with two full sets. The first set will vary and will no doubt feature tunes from the group's latest CD EP/DVD, "Animals Should Not Try to Act Like People." The second set will be a performance of "Sailing the Seas of Cheese," its breakthrough album, which means you'll hear "Tommy the Cat," "Those Damned Blue-Collar Tweekers," and "Los Bastardos." The show starts at 8 p.m.

1 Hamilton Place, 617-679-0810.

Anger management

WBCN-FM DJ Nik Carter once corralled Go! at a Vans Warped Tour stop in Western Massachusetts, stuck a mike in our face, and asked for our take on the punk rock-plus festival. Having an aversion to sugarcoating the truth, we opined that it was a pretty cool affair but that the band onstage at the moment, the Deftones, struck us as yet another rather dull, paint-by-numbers rap-metal outfit. Yikes. Once again, we had committed radio sacrilege, because all the bands played by a particular radio station are supposed to be, like Tony the Tiger, g-r-r-reat! Times change, rap-metal is on the descent, and maybe even the Deftones themselves thought that they'd hit a wall; their eponymous latest disc shows more variety and melody. Or as Britain's NME puts it, the Deftones manage to sound violent and deranged but "employ cunning devices like `taste,' `melody' and `emotion' to pepper their songs." Don't worry, kids, they haven't become a happy bunch, and if you're a ticked-off youth, we're pretty sure you can still relate. The Deftones, a Sacramento-based quintet fronted by singer Chino Moreno, are at the Palladium in Worcester with Poison the Well and Denali. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $25.50.

261 Main St., Worcester, 800-477-6849.

Worlds apart

Younger Go! readers may hear the name "George Wallace" and think of the African-American standup comedian. That's OK, and kind of cool. But Go! is of an age that, when we hear that name, it takes us back to a certain late, mean-spirited white politician and presidential candidate from the state of Alabama (and, yes, the guy saluted by Lynyrd Skynyrd in "Sweet Home Alabama"). True, George Wallace the guvnor seemed to acquire some humility and human decency toward the end of his life, but back in 1963 he was making America a very ugly place by adamantly resisting the Kennedy administration's attempts to integrate the University of Alabama. To mark the 40th anniversary of this showdown, the Kennedy Library and Museum is screening Robert Drew's documentary "Crisis: Behind a Presidential Commitment," which will be followed by a discussion with Drew; Vivian Malone Jones, one of the first registered African-American students at UA; and Nicholas Katzenbach, a former Justice Department official from the Kennedy administration. The forum, which is free, will be moderated by NPR senior correspondent Juan Williams. It runs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Columbia Point, 877-616-4599.

Events can always be canceled, rescheduled, or sold out; call to confirm. Go! can be reached at or by calling 617-929-8257.

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