Music » Critics' Picks

Hawthorne Heights

6 p.m. Saturday, December 19. Fubar, 3108 Locust Street.

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The premature death of a musician does one of two things: Either it gives their band a boost, however morbid (see pop-punk act Bayside, whose popularity soared after its drummer died in a van accident), or it completely halts all momentum a band once had. Dayton, Ohio's Hawthorne Heights was a victim of the latter scenario when guitarist Casey Calvert died unexpectedly in his sleep two years ago while the band was only one date into a large headlining tour. Calvert's death — coupled with myriad lawsuits between the band, its record label and its management — effectively killed Hawthorne Heights' career. Musical trends have since shifted away from the band's earnest, tuneful brand of screamo-laced pop-punk, but the band — now a quartet, having chosen not to replace Calvert — is on the rebound, with a new label (Wind-up Records) and a new album, Skeletons, due this coming May. While the band's current live draw may pale in comparison to its venue-packing days a scant few years ago, you gotta give 'em props for soldiering on for the sake of its art. It is not easy.

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