Close Talker GigCity EdmontonWith a lot of your favourite Canadian indie bands down in Texas for the SXSW festival, this is a good weekend to check out some of the newer venues in Edmonton, which are in full swing with new talent this weekend.

The Needle Vinyl Tavern, for example, hosts Saskatoon’s Close Talker (pictured) on Saturday night – just a couple of days after they return from their own SXSW showcase.

Mercury Room always has great bands performing on their stage, and this Thursday night is no exception, with Winnipeg’s Crooked Brothers in town. One of the city’s very newest venues, The Alley, west of the Whyte Avenue cavalcade, hosts alt-funk group Strange Charm on Friday night. DV8, who’ve moved their shows over to Mama’s Pizza, hosts a metal bill on Friday night. And while The Almanac is quiet this weekend, they’ve also got some great gigs coming up, including Mike Plume and Concealer in the coming weeks.

And if you’re into something just a little bit different, check out the Buckingham on Monday, with their new weekly Rocking 4 Dollars event. Nine bands play three songs each, two of which are originals, and one a cover. The tricky part is that the cover song is chosen by the venue. At the end of the night every band gets to spin a wheel and try to win a prize. Their first go at it earlier this week was a huge success.

Thursday 17

Crooked Brothers – This Winnipeg act are an agile mix of folk, blues, and a little bit of country. A little bit sad. A little bit joyful. A whole lot of fun. With Post Script. Mercury Room, 7 pm, $10. BUY

Spencer Murray and Pipeslinger – This Edmonton Celtic project meshes both traditional and original tracks from Irish, Scottish, and Canadian roots. Needle Vinyl Tavern, 8 pm, $5 cover.

Not Enough Fest Fundraiser – The festival proper, featuring women, queer and trans artists, takes place later in May. In the meantime, they’re hosting a fundraiser featuring hilarious comic Jon Mick, proto-punk quartet Cham, and N3K, a trio that combines jazz, house, and hip hop. Accent European Lounge, 9 pm, $10.

Friday 18

Strange Charm – This local alt-rock-funk group has an abundant suite of influences, with the members having met in fall 2015 during studies at Grant MacEwan’s esteemed music program. The King’s Gambit and Hello Me are also on the bill. The Alley, 7:30 pm, $10. BUY

Storm Horizon – This progressive-power metal quartet headlines a night of various metal acts as part of DV8’s move to Mama’s Pizza over in Terrace Heights. Also on the bill are Solborn, Enduring the Fall, and Tymo. 8 pm, $15 at the door.

Saturday 19

Chelsea Grin – This Salt Lake City deathcore band formed in 2007; since then the group has seen a cast of members come and go, leaving only frontman and vocalist Alex Koehler from that original lineup. The sextet has a trio of studio albums, including their latest from 2014, Ashes To Ashes. Oceans Ate Alaska, When Minds Develop, and Fear Of City also perform. Starlite Room, 7 pm, $22. BUY

Close Talker – This indie quartet out of Saskatoon released their second full-length album Flux in November 2014. No strangers to these parts, one would expect them to have some new material at the show. No promises of course, but one would think that, wouldn’t one? With North Of Here and We Were Friends. Needle Vinyl Tavern, 8 pm, $12. BUY

No Problem – One level down from the Chelsea Grin show at Brixx, this local hardcore quartet will be dropping some serious guitar riffage themselves, along with Slates, Stepmothers, and Street League. 9 pm, $10 at the door.