Every Monday, we’ll be offering you early picks for some of the week’s best concerts. Do you think we omitted something worthwhile? Let us know in the comments! Also, we’ve launched a new Local Concert Calendar, which you should be sure to check out for an expanded set of daily listings. Bands/promoters/managers, feel free to submit your own shows to the Calendar too.

The Babies – “Run Me Over”
White Fence – “Lilian (Won’t You Play Drums?)”
Melted Toys – “Lost Connection”
The Art Museums – “Sculpture Gardens”
Sean Smith – “Palak Paneer”

White Fence and The Babies’ joint tour comes to SF

Darker My Love’s Tim Presley explores more warped, lo-fi terrain as White Fence, with a new album on Woodsist out next week. Sunday, January 9th at the Hemlock Tavern (8:30pm, $7), he’ll be playing alongside The Babies, Grass Widow and Bad Back. Presley’s not the only one on the bill who does double duty in another band — The Babies is led by Kevin Morby (Woods) and Cassie Ramone (Vivian Girls).

Melted Toys and Nodzzz bookend all-local lineup at The Eagle

SF’s Melted Toys are a moody synth-pop band whose debut EP is out this year on Underwater Peoples. The band opens an excellent show this Thursday at The Eagle. Nodzzz, who I believe have a new album coming out in 2011, headlines, alongside The Mantles and The Art Museums.

The Velvet Teen return with No Star

Sonoma County’s The Velvet Teen celebrate the physical release of No Star, their first release in about four years, with a show at Bottom of the Hill on January 7th (10pm, $10, All Ages). If you dig the band’s previous work and/or tight, emotive indie rock, you’ll enjoy this latest record too. Silian Rail and Low-five start the show.

A happy hour show with two local guitar wizards

Two local solo guitarists team up at the Make-Out Room this Friday night for an early evening show (7:30pm, $7). Sean Smith (ex-Citay) joins Jameson Swanagon (of Grand Lake), who recently released his solo album, Desolation Happiness.