Bambu's solo album I Scream Bars for the Children highlights the vapidity of mainstream hip-hop with its sheer intellect, eschewing bitches for a pointed discussion of international affairs. But the Los Angeles–based Filipino-American rapper also knows that his delivery and beats better be bumping if anyone will pay attention to his messages. His live performance offers album cuts interspersed with reimagined hip-hop radio hits, like his brilliant "International Guerrillas Anthem," which beautifully captures the cadence of UGK's "International Players Anthem" while discussing the ravages of war. Bambu brings hip-hop for the mind and body on Thursday, Nov. 15, at Milk at 10 p.m. Admission is $10; call 387-6455 or visit www.milksf.com for more info. — Tamara Palmer
2K Sports is miles ahead when it comes to music for videogames, commissioning original works from well-known independent hip-hop producers instead of relying on 8-bit crap. The company's latest release, B-Ball Zombie War, was compiled by Stones Throw label head Peanut Butter Wolf. It combats sports game soundtrack stereotypes by leaving the machismo to the side and focusing on tunes that are actually listenable, ranging from electro (Arabian Prince's "Professor X Saga") to boom-bap (Percee P and J-Rocc's "Legendary Lyricist Pt. 2"). The last two join Peanut Butter Wolf and Stones Throw's marquee artist Madlib to celebrate the arrival of this funky Zombie on Friday, Nov. 16, at the Independent at 9 p.m. Admission is $22; call 771-1421 or visit www.theindependentsf.com for more info. — T.P.