Street Sounds, Battle of the Jug Bands, and more

WEDNESDAY 2.10

Mike Dreams

7th St. Entry

Michael Hannah is a rarity, an artist with a positive message and the conviction to follow through on it. An MC with a smooth flow, Hannah has long since eliminated all curse words from his rhymes, which lay out a credo of peace and social activism informed by, though not limited to, his religious beliefs. If his message of hope seems grandiose, then equally important for Hannah, who recently switched from the moniker Young Son to the more appropriate Mike Dreams, is a deep-seated faith in himself and a determination to make it big. Nowhere is this more apparent than on "We're Goin' Worldwide," one of the singles from Dreamer's Poetry, the record he's releasing tonight. Dreams name-checks Chris Brown and OutKast before asserting his own inevitable successes: "I'm still dreaming/But I know it's gonna happen/Success on deck like a patio." A little ambition never hurts, even for the humblest of visionaries. With Max Haben, Ashley Dubose, Mally, DJ Advance, and Cameron Mann. Hosted by Toki Wright. 18+. $5. 8 p.m. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612.332.1775. Jeff Gage

FRIDAY 2.12

Dawes

You're in Big Trouble, missy
Nick Vlcek
You're in Big Trouble, missy

Triple Rock Social Club

Taylor Goldsmith's contemplations of eternity may be a bit precocious for someone in his early 20s, but then he and his similarly youthful bandmates in Dawes suggest they have old souls on their debut album, North Hills. Or at least souls whose vintage musical tastes place them specifically in the hills and canyons around L.A. in the late '60s. The quartet evolved from the alt-pop teenage band Simon Dawes, with Goldsmith joined by his drummer brother Griffin (the sons of former Tower of Power singer Lenny Goldsmith), S.D. bassist Wylie Gelber, and current pianist Alex Casnoff. Much of North Hills has that hazy, ambling, Laurel Canyon groove associated with folks like Jackson Browne and Crosby, Stills & Nash, Goldsmith essentially cloaking himself in that sun-dappled vibe as he tries to make sense of the world with lines like "anyone that's making anything new only breaks something else." You can pick out influences all over Hills: vocal harmonies that suggest CS&N there, Workingman's Dead there; guitar figures reminiscent of Stephen Stills and Neil Young; Creedence, the Band, Gram Parsons. While evoking a certain time and place, Dawes doesn't feel derivative, instead grafting something new onto old roots. Opening will be a pair of bands with their own takes on Americana roots. With family ties to Minnesota's Iron Range, Appleton, Wisconsin-based Cory Chisel juggles folkie introspection and edgy rock with his Wandering Sons on last fall's Death Won't Send a Letter. There's a stronger country-rock thread on Hustler's Son, the solo debut of Jason Boesel, stepping up as a singer and guitarist after years behind the drum kit for the likes of Rilo Kiley and Bright Eyes. 18+. $10. 9 p.m. 629 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612.333.7399. —Rick Mason

Solas

The Cedar

Although Solas straddles the Atlantic in terms of personnel and sometimes temperament, its roots are unquestionably Celtic. In fact, Solas often is cited as one of the world's leading Irish bands, despite being based on American soil. The quintet's seemingly casual virtuosity and fervid spirit flourish both on traditional material and the contemporary fare that regularly enters its repertoire these days, albeit with such exquisite doses of the auld stuff that lineages are unmistakable. There are only two traditional tunes on Solas's The Turning Tide (Compass), out this week, but the band members' originals and the four magnificent covers all sparkle with ancient tendrils coaxed from Winifred Horan's fiddle or Seamus Egan's whistles or Mick McAuley's accordion. A swirling air or reel easily drifts in a contemporary direction with jazzy phrasing or the introduction of a drum kit to add kick. Ultimately the album's underlying theme of troubled times comes from the covers, which settle naturally among the stirring instrumentals: Richard Thompson's "The Ditching Boy," Josh Ritter's "A Girl in the War," Bruce Springsteen's "The Ghost of Tom Joad," and Scottish songwriter Karine Polwart's "Sorry." Amidst the bristling instruments, it's relative newcomer Mairead Phelan's haunting voice that adds the telling flourishes—poignancy, desperation, outrage. All ages. $18/$20 at the door. 7 p.m. 416 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612.338.2674. —Rick Mason

Street Sounds hosted by Attitude City

First Avenue VIP Room

In a town almost overrun with DJs, it's worth noting that Attitude City (veteran vinyl hounds Karl Frankowski and Jeff Dubois) have kept slinging wax long after droves of their younger competitors hung up their headphones. Maybe it's because they don't seem to be in it for any kind of king-of-the-hill recognition; they do it because they get to play the records they love. But what sets these two apart from your average music enthusiast is their penchant for juxtaposition combined with their talent for mixing—you'll hear little bits of classics from various genres blending seamlessly with forward-thinking floor fillers, plus old favorites that sneak up on you before they tap you on the shoulder and give you a great big kiss. The duo bounces between popular cuts and surprising underground fare with a surety that only experience can afford. They may be old enough to hold down nine-to-five jobs, but creating dance-floor joy is their real business. With Mike 2600 and Wes Winship. 18+. $5. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 10 p.m. 612.332.1775. Ian Traas

SATURDAY 2.13

Lucy Michelle is in Big Trouble

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