Space may write the very best spring-cleaning music since ABBA (or the underappreciated Pale). Wait, before you turn the page, remember that this is no small achievement. How many bands have the power to make you grin and hum while you are scraping dried diarrhea from the inside of your cat box? Well, Space's debut has that power. Spiders fights grout, fungus, and plaque. Spiders can recycle and take out the garbage. Spiders will make you feel five years younger and 10 pounds lighter. Like Mary Tyler Moore, it will turn that frown upside down. Perhaps it is the ticklish blend of bubble pop, ska, sci-fi rumba, and Euro-disco; or perhaps it is the charming way that the Liverpool foursome make English seem like their second language (listen to the Swedish-sounding "Female of the Species," the near-Germanic "Mister Psycho," and the strangely Parisian "Neighborhood"). Whatever the reason, nine of the 14 songs on Spiders will have you gurning like mad. Space is headlining with the Cardigans at Live 105's 10-year anniversary party at the Concourse Exhibition Center on Saturday, March 8. Tickets can only be attained by winning them from Live 105, but it might be worthwhile; call 478-LIVE. ... Of course, if you don't have the gumption to withstand thousands of pre-pubes singing, "Love me/ Love me/ Say that you love me," you can always head over to "Stinky's Peepshow" for some tasteful, slightly more mature entertainment: Redneck Girlfriend and the Beer Bong semifinals. While Redneck Girlfriend wield their guitars like ill-concealed Freudian extensions and sing rock 'n' roll anthems about broads, cars, and booze, patrons of "Stinky's" will be invited to wrap their lips around a funnel loaded with four pints of Mickeys lager (aka "Green Death"). The fastest time with the least spillage will get you into next week's finals, which will be an all-you-can-chug affair. The swilling begins at 10 p.m. at the Covered Wagon on Thursday, March 6. Tickets are $5; call 974-5906. ... Funky Tekno Tribe makes it into THOT for the second week in a row. Friday night, they welcome Spring Heel Jack, Britain's reigning princes of drum & bass (a complex hybrid of breakbeat and techno that runs at 150 to 180 bpm). Beat junkies believe that once you discover drum & bass, techno is just too damn slow. If beats are, indeed, like drugs, 68 Million Shades -- SHJ's U.S. debut -- is a pharmacy. At first listen, 68 has an early morning cadence: Shy drumbeats playing hide-and-seek within layers of dreamy, atmospheric samples; a clean silence broken only by the sound of a pounding heart. It's essentially a wind-down trip, except that the beats lurk and linger. Just as you feel like slipping into slumber, the beats fill your mind, then they fill your body. Soon, it is all you can do to keep yourself from dancing like the half-man, half-kangaroo for which the band is named. The show is on Friday, March 7, at 9 p.m. at Bimbo's 365 Club. Tickets are $10; call 474-0365. DJs Dark Horse and Noel spin. ... The master of cowboy jazz, Jim Campilongo, celebrates the release of his second CD. Esteemed musical colleagues like Ralph Carney, Stephen Yerkey, and Johnny Dilks will be joining the fray on Friday, March 7, at 9:30 p.m. at the Paradise Lounge. Ticket price is $7; call 861-5121. ... Considered to be the pinnacle of Vancouver, British Columbia, lounge, the Colorifics have grown accustomed to playing sold-out halls every time they present their snazzy little selves for public consumption. Not a huge accomplishment in a town where theirs is ostensibly the only lounge act around -- but still. After three years and much gushing by the Canadian press, the quartet -- featuring a Tibetan-born Buddhist on trap kit and former Rattled Roosters guitarist Bernard Boulanger -- seems ready to tackle the Lounge Capital by the Bay. Musically, the band's new CD, Living City, smacks of Black Velvet Flag's Come Recline, except that the Colorifics, in keeping with their heritage, do not believe in irony. Their songs are smart and exceptionally sincere originals that escape nausea through the catchy twinkle of vocalist Lindsey Davis. The Colorifics will have stiff but welcome competition on Sunday, March 9, when they open for the Friends of Dean Martinez -- the kings of the spaghetti-western martini -- at the Bottom of the Hill. The barbecue starts at 4 p.m.; ticket price is $3, including grub; call 621-4455. The Colorifics also play at the Paradise Lounge on Saturday, March 8, at 9:30 p.m.; at the Hi-Ball Lounge on Sunday, March 9, at 9:30 p.m.; and at Bruno's on Tuesday, March 11, at 9:30 p.m. The Friends of Dean Martinez perform with Frenchy at the Great American Music Hall on Wednesday, March 5, at 9 p.m. Ticket price is $8.50; call 885-0750. ... The Canadian invasion continues with the alter ego of NoMeansNo. The Hanson Brothers began as a Ramones cover band (the similarity is uncanny) that sent many LSD-saturated Canucks into orgies of idol worship during the late '80s. This was ego-fulfilling for the boys, but it wasn't until the release of the hockey movie Slap Shot that the Hanson Brothers realized their true calling. Donning uniforms and face masks, the quartet began singing about the two things that really matter: punk rock and hockey. Join the Hanson Brothers in their crusade to add all-time penalty minutes leader Dave "Tiger" Williams into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Saturday, March 8, at Berkeley Square at 9 p.m. Ticket price is $7; call (510) 841-6555. Or on Sunday, March 9, at the Kilowatt at 7 p.m. Ticket price is $6; call 861-2595. The Loudmouths and the Lowdowns open.
-- Silke Tudor