Batista gets raw.
7:30 p.m., Alltel Arena. $21.75-$61.75.
superstars bring the drama and pile-driving action back to Alltel Arena with a star-studded card pitting the sons of two legends in a tag-team bout: Cody Rhodes (son of “The American Dream,” Dusty), and Ted DiBiase (son of “The Million Dollar Man,” Ted) against Cryme Tyme, for the WWE World Tag Team Championship title. Other matches include Primo Colon vs. William Regal, D'Lo Brown vs. Snitsky, and another tag-team bout with two titles on line featuring Kofi Kingston/Mickie James vs. Santino Marella/Beth Phoenix for the Intercontinental and WWE Women's Tag Team titles. Also on the card is Rey Mysterio vs. Kane, Batista vs. JBL and the main event, CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho, for the World Heavyweight Championship belt. Die-hard and younger fans alike should have plenty to cheer about, considering the big names and the likelihood of watching gold-studded belts exchange hands. Paul Peterson LUCERO FAMILY PICNIC
2 p.m., Riverside Park, Batesville. $15-$40.
For the second year, one of Central Arkansas's favorite adopted acts hosts a handful of its favorite bands on the banks of the White River in Batesville. This year's line-up is stout. Former Drive-By Trucker Jason Isbell
launched a solo career two years ago with the meditative Southern rocker, “Sirens of the Ditch.” Steve's son Justin Townes Earle
aims to follow in his footsteps, and those of the likes of the Re-placements and Kurt Cobain, with ramshackle, literate songs of unease. From Fayetteville, Cory Branan is the decorated singer/songwriter and frequent duet partner of Lucero
's Ben Nichols. Local favorite the Good Fear
, which features former Lucero guitarist Todd Gill, deserves broader exposure, but all the dudes in the band are married and settled and will probably never tour steadily beyond Little Rock and Fayetteville. Our gain. Dan Montgomery
is one of Memphis' more respected folk rockers. For those clamoring to get close to Lucero or their pals, a $40 VIP pass scores access to the artists, food and booze. An after-party at Josie's follows the all-day concert.
ALSO: Check out the schedule here
. Early in the afternoon is the redneck games: moonpie eating contest, tobacco spitting contest, cow chip toss, etc.
9 p.m., Juanita's. $10-$12.
Formed in 2001, Egypt Central
takes its name from one of the toughest roads through the band's hometown of Memphis. Signed to Lava records, the metal act recorded its self-titled, debut disc in 2006, and watched it collect dust for nearly two years after massive downsizing efforts left the band without a label, but with a solid record in dire need of release and distribution. One song, “Over and Under,” captured the attention of WWE and was featured on the soundtrack of Stone Cold Steve Austin's movie, “The Condemned.” This exposure was enough to land an invitation to Ozzfest and a re-up to Fat Lady Music in 2007. Foster care, rehabs, homelessness, label woes and the ever-fertile collage of lost love, frustration and broken dreams comprise Egypt Central's lyrical ingredients, which are set to catchy, hard-driving, thunderous metal grooves that borderline on arena rock and funk. With local hard-drivers Midnight to Twelve
and Drop Dead Syndicate
opening, Egypt Central stands ready to swing the wrecking ball for an all-ages Juanita's show. Paul Peterson. ASHTRAY BABYHEAD
9 p.m., White Water Tavern. $5.
There was talk, early on, about enticing defunct and long existing bands like Mulehead and Ho-Hum to perform at next week's 18th anni-versary get-down at Vino's. Local alt-pop heroes Ashtray Babyhead, who owned Little Rock stages in the late '90s, were game, but when all their old friends balked, AB stepped back, too. But the idea of reforming stuck, and now comes an opening gig at White Water. Vocal-ist Scott Cook warns that this is likely to be a short set, a warm-up show for a concert the band will headline at Juanita's next week. But come sing along. Cook promises to play the hits. He also says this is likely a pattern: Fans can expect one or two Ashtray Babyhead
shows a year, but no more. Friends of the Ashtray Babyheads and frequent show mates with Cook's new band Kyoto Boom, the Moving Front
, perform for the first time in a month, which for fans of the band's searing post-punk is reason enough to step out on Friday. Fayetteville's the Inner Party
rounds out the bill.