KRS-One, Shonen Knife, and more

KRS-One

Epic

KRS-One might be an eloquent nut, but give the Bronx rap legend his due: Rather than ride on the fumes of a greatness documented across 2000's Jive collection KRS-One: A Retrospective and 2005's Traffic/B Boy deluxe reissue of Boogie Down Productions' Criminal Minded, the Teacher has stayed active and creative at about the profile level of a real schoolteacher—never better than in collaboration with Raphi of the Footsoldiers on 2006's "Gimmie Da Gun," and now with Boot Camp Clik's Buckshot on the new Survival Skills. Produced by Havoc of Mobb Deep, "Robot" goes beyond attacking Auto-Tune overuse to take robo-music as a metaphor for robo-thinking. "We Made It," with Slug of Atmosphere, poignantly redefines its title expression as simply living life successfully. "Think of All the Things," with K'naan, finds KRS pleading with young women: "You keep seeking little boys who only want sex from you/Real men want the rest of you." This is hip hop as revival tent, led by a juicily emphatic preacher in his 40s, yet still "hungry like I never had a meal." 18+. $20/$25 at the door. 10 p.m. 110 N. Fifth St., Minneapolis; 612.332.3742. —Peter S. Scholtes

SUNDAY 10.25

Great Lake Swimmers

The Cedar

Toronto's Great Lake Swimmers splash about in an atmospheric realm of spare but elegantly etched folk music blended with superior strains of subtle rock and pop. Combined with chief Swimmer Tony Dekker's arid, bittersweet, oddly affecting vocals murmuring enigmatic lyrics about existence as ephemeral as "a cry in the night" and lovers who drift into dreams, the mood is haunting, autumnal, and a little Erie—uh, eerie. The Swimmers' fourth album, Lost Channels, continues to probe exquisite melancholy with judicious bits of pedal steel, mandolin, and cello, but also breaks out into nicely ringing folk-rock, suggesting prime Fairport Convention on "Palmistry" and "Pulling on a Line," and even a lush, Beach Boys-like vibe on "Concrete Heart." There's not much surf to get up in the Thousand Islands region of the St. Lawrence River, where Channels was recorded, but apparently the vibrations were pretty good. Openers the Wooden Birds, the latest band from former American Analog Set leader Andrew Kenny, conjure a similarly hushed atmosphere on Magnolia, the band's debut. With an up-front bass providing prominent rhythmic textures and Kenny stringing whispery vocals along gently loping beats, the sound falls somewhere between folk and rock without being either. All ages. $12/$15 at the door. 7 p.m. 416 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612.338.2674. —Rick Mason

MONDAY 10.26

The Raveonettes

First Avenue

Like Minnesota's own Low, the Raveonettes seem to have spun a career out of the sensibility expressed during the "In Dreams" sequence in Blue Velvet: They reach for everything precious, nostalgic, and haunting in '60s pop, but through a debauched haze of '80s alarm, like the Ronettes singing Velvet Underground lyrics backed by the Jesus and Mary Chain—and then looped into a soulless feedback echo of itself. Like Low, they've recorded a classic indie-rock Christmas song ("The Christmas Song"), perhaps recognizing the ornamental use of cool noise. But last year's impressionistic Lust Lust Lust was a big step forward: a refinement of their menace in beats. The new In and Out of Control turns down the racket to reveal lyrics you might wish you'd missed: Forever stamped on Roman Polanski's news week, "Boys Who Rape (Should All Be Destroyed)" is an exercise in arty incongruity—all major-chord harmonies and wrath—and should have been destroyed. "Breaking into Cars" blurs its title theme more mysteriously, and is just as catchy. With the Black Angels, Violent Soho, and Daughters of the Sun. 18+. $14/$16 at the door. 8 p.m. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612.332.1775. —Peter S. Scholtes

TUESDAY 10.27

Lights

Triple Rock Social Club

You could call Lights, whose birth name is Valerie Poxleitner, the girl and/or Canadian version of Minnesota's own Owl City. The similarities are striking: Both picked up a guitar and started writing songs in their early teens, before switching to electronics in an attempt to expand their respective sounds. Both owe their early success to the internet and social media. The two are Christians, and while they are by no means Christian rock acts, their faith is an influence. And most importantly, Owl City and Lights make catchy electronic music to which you can bop around, or simply sit back and listen. There are differences, though. Lights is more influenced by the synth bands of the '80s such as New Order and Human League. "I've certainly drawn my share of influence from them," she says. "In fact, I just had a chance to see Human League play in the U.K. It was really interesting." And if future Big Bang theorists weren't already imagining this lovely chanteuse as their Canadian girlfriend, there's this little nugget—-she's totally into video games. "Losing yourself in another world is kind of perfect for inspiration," she explains. "My job and my hobby are the same thing...you can't take a weekend off, so I just lose myself in World of Warcraft." With Stars of Track and Field. All ages. $10/$12 at the door. 6 p.m. 629 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis; 613.333.7399. P.F. Wilson

Thao & the Get Down Stay Down

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