First Avenue on Sunday 12.4

At this point it's pretty safe to say that "Pumped Up Kicks" is the crossover smash of the year. Foster the People's debut single is omnipresent on the radio dial and beyond—it's impossible to get away from. But why would you want to? The young band lends an undeniable good-time feel to everything they touch (even while they're singing about running from gunshots). Foster the People's disco-lite sports razor-sharp hooks while utilizing a bag of tricks that modern dance-music producers have dipped into for years, and the combo has made them stars overnight. The massive appeal of "Kicks" showcases just a fraction of their potential; there's an appeal to the band that reaches beyond immediacy. With Poliça. 18+. Sold out. 8 p.m. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612.338.8388. —Ian Traas


State Theatre on Tuesday 12.6 and Wednesday 12.7

All the Pretty Horses' J Evan LeFreak and Venus DeMars
Marcus Metropolis
All the Pretty Horses' J Evan LeFreak and Venus DeMars

Location Info


First Avenue

701 1st Ave. N.
Minneapolis, MN 55403

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Minneapolis (Downtown)

Wilco is a little like baseball—you probably know the rules, but the diehard fans see skill and nuance that are impossible to convey to the casual crowd. Jeff Tweedy and company have become a full-blown American institution, and their fans are tracking stats, keeping up with the band on a micro level. Now that the music landscape is even more filled with scores of tiny genres and outsized attitudes, it's comforting that Wilco exists, continuing to make music that feels like it's been around forever and will find its audience long after current trends burn out. Wilco will doubtlessly keep playing for their fans, and they won't even ask for a stadium to do it in. With Nick Lowe. All ages. $44. 7:30 p.m. 805 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612.339.7007. —Ian Traas

Tower of Power

Dakota Jazz Club on Tuesday 12.6 -Thursday 12.8

Seriously soulful, furiously funky, and tighter than Scrooge McDuck at a misers' convention, the blazing horns of Tower of Power have been setting a standard for wickedly incendiary, muscle-flexing R&B for 43 years. Tower of Power's rousing, formidable Oakland soul has supported and inspired the likes of Sly Stone, Santana, the Rolling Stones, and Aretha Franklin in addition to scoring such indelible hits as "What Is Hip?" and "You're Still a Young Man." Anchored by a solid core of original members, including founding saxophonists Emilio Castillo and Doc Kupka, the 10-piece outfit still roars with a precision and power that defies the years and continues to rocket audiences out of their seats. Thus, Tower of Power fanatics demanding a three-night stand at the Dakota. The magic is convincingly captured on 40th Anniversary, a live CD/DVD recorded at the Fillmore with multiple Tower of Power alumni, and 2009's collection of classic soul covers, Great American Soulbook. $45-$70. 7 and 9 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday; 8 and 10 p.m. Thursday. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612.332.1010. —Rick Mason

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