Los Angeles native Emilie Autumn was a classically trained violinist at age four, but she abandoned classical music for a Victorian cabaret-inspired goth hybrid that mixed classical, rock, and electronic. In 2006, Autumn released Opheliac, exploring manic depression and self-mutilation against the backdrop of a mental institution. It was informed by her own institutional experiences, which she related in her 2010 memoir The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls. "Anybody who's ever thought about killing themselves, anybody who's cut themselves, licked the blood, and liked the taste, I'm your girl," she says. Ever theatrical, Autumn is accompanied onstage by her corseted backing band, the Bloody Crumpets, and often a range of performers from burlesque to men on stilts. The pancake makeup and costumes are designed to offset the harrowing subject matter. "This is the darkest stuff you can manifest," she says. "To balance that out, I need to look like a fucking cupcake."— Chris Parker
8 p.m. Friday, February 24. Peabody's. Tickets: $18, $15 in advance; call 216-776-9999 or visit peabodys.com.
Children of Bodom
Finnish death-metal band Children of Bodom named themselves after a mass murder that took place in their homeland in 1960 involving bludgeoned teenagers. Appropriately, the band's music hits just as hard. Last year's Relentless Reckless Forever, their seventh album since 1997, is a venomous but melodic listen. The group is so popular in its native country that the record was certified gold the day it came out. Children of Bodom take themselves seriously enough to churn out complex, interesting songs, but they're also looser and more playful than many of their peers, cracking smiles between the heavy riffs. They've been known to break out spirited covers of Britney Spears' "Oops! ... I Did it Again" and Eddie Murphy's "Party All the Time" in concert. Even some of their original material, like "Shovel Knockout" and "Everytime I Die," showcases their taste for black-humor brutality. — Ben Gifford
With Eluveitie, Revocation, and Threat Signal. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, February 25. Peabody's. Tickets: $25, $20 in advance; call 216-776-9999 or visit peabodys.com.
Young the Giant
At times, Young the Giant frontman Sameer Gadhia looks like he's trying to swim through the air, grasping at a phantom something in front of him before he finally grabs one of his microphones. The band's concerts are kinda like a party hosted by Foster the People, but then the Killers walk in and dim the lights. All the poppy hooks are intact, but they're painted black around the edges, taking on an edgy aggression that fuels each song with an extra kick in the balls. Songs like "Cough Syrup" come complete with rousing choruses that sound like they were manufactured for maximum impact (the California quintet's critics refer to them as "corporate indie"). Still, it's difficult to press pause during "My Body," their pulsating pop hit that snagged a featured spot on American Idol last year. You won't have a chance to stop the centrifugal force that Young the Giant bring to their live shows either. So just put your arms up and make sure to come up for air. — Danielle Sills
With Walk the Moon. 8 p.m. Sunday, February 26. Beachland Ballroom. Tickets: $15; call 216-383-1124 or visit beachlandballroom.com.