10 Best Upcoming Concerts of 2015

Sleater-Kinney finally return in 2015.

Sleater-Kinney finally return in 2015.

The Sony hackers have ruined what was left of the movie industry, but there are still quite a few resonant happenings in the realm of forthcoming live music. Concerts in the Twin Cities region (and occasionally beyond) are already shaping up to be a spectacle in the new year. And it seems like a million of them are happening at Turf Club.

A ton of lineups, confirmations, and "special announcements" await us in the months to come, but Gimme Noise is giving props to the early birds who got us some info more than 10 days in advance! (Apologies to fans of Hozier, Idina Menzel, and Nickelback, but this list is not for you.) Here are 10 concerts we're excited about for 2015.

Eaux Claires Music and Arts Festival
Okay, so this one is not in the Twin Cities, but it's fixing to be worth the short journey. On the weekend of July 17-18, nearby rural Wisconsin will host the debut of a festival curated by Bon Iver's Justin Vernon and Aaron Dessner from the National. This event, hosted at Foster Farm with help from Crashline Productions, has the potential to be semi-weird or thoroughly strange. We're hoping for the latter. More on it here.

White Boyfriend
One of the best bands bubbling under the Twin Cities mainstream is White Boyfriend. Their self-titled debut combines unflinching individuality, a cracked sense of humor, and the ability to liberate their instruments from indie rock's tired cliches. Synth player Nicky Leingang, drummer Katharine Seggerman, and bassist Dan Hansen harmonize vocally and physically in ways that make their live experience essential. Look them up to see where they'll play next, but take special note of a 7th St. Entry release show on January 16.

Not only does 2015 bring us a new album, No Cities to Love, from the reunited punks Sleater-Kinney, but the group is making a sold-out tour stop at First Ave on Valentine's Day! After reissuing and remastering the whole back catalog earlier this year, the Pacific Northwest trio put a wrecking ball-sized cherry on top of the sundae. The venue is large enough to accommodate a few Portlandia obsessives hoping simply to catch Carrie Brownstein in the flesh, but the energy of one of the best nuclei rock 'n' roll has ever seen is the main attraction. (See also: Swervedriver at Turf Club on March 12.)

Girl Germs: A Live Tribute to Women in Music
The curatorial talents of Dana Raidt and Sally Hedberg return for the second edition of Girl Germs coming to the Turf Club on January 10. This one features Aby Wolf exploring Kate Bush's catalog, Alpha Consumer taking on Aretha Franklin, Kitten Forever bringing punk attitude to Beyoncé, K.Raydio digging into Erykah Badu's material, and Yoni Yum tasked with Marianne Faithfull's work.

Billy Idol
As part of the not-small run of 10th anniversary events the Current has in store, former Generation X frontman Billy Idol (and guitarist Steve Stevens) will headline the Turf. Of course, Idol is best known for later embracing synthesizers and running off a series of '80s pop hits like "White Wedding" and "Mony Mony" (that some folks in the local media aren't sold on). Cultural and critical clashes are to be expected for Idol's acoustic show featuring Little Man and Tropical Depression in the opening slots. 
Kacey Musgraves
Look, we all know how scream-worthy Taylor Swift is gonna be in September, but this show is geared toward fans of clever country songs that still resemble country music. Lady Antebellum, Willie Nelson, Alison Krauss & Union Station, and Katy Perry have all taken the talented "Follow Your Arrow" singer on the road with them, and now she'll finally get to build a whole night around her iconoclastic badassery. The show is February 20 at the State Theatre. (For something more affordable and combustible, there's Nikki Lane headlining the Turf on February 14. Also, take note of Hurray for the Riff Raff at the Cedar on May 1.) 

Single Mothers
Single Mothers play post-hardcore on their debut full-length, Negative Qualities, that approximates the ragged glory days of Trail of Dead and the fury of LFTR PLLR-era Craig Finn. "Baby" and pretty much everything else they've put out plays to riling up our bodies and minds simultaneously. Frontman Drew Thomson leads the carnage arriving at the Entry on February 24.

The combined firepower of hip-hop producer extraordinaire DJ Premier (Gang Starr, Jay Z, Kanye West, everyone) and veteran rapper Royce Da 5'9" gets its first Twin Cities on March 1 at the Fine Line. Judging by their self-titled album, released earlier this month, this show will be a reminder that "Muthafuckas can't rhyme no more about rhyme no more" -- 'cept these guys experiencing a mid-career renaissance together. (Not a bad idea to consider them for Soundset 2015.)

Drone Not Drones: Another 28-Hour Drone
The first one was a marathon of noise and peaceful purpose with Low and dozens of other bands lending their most dissonant sides to a never-ending drone at the Cedar. The lineup is filling out for the return on January 30-31. Low, P.O.S., Drone Man Winter (Trampled by Turtles, Dead Man Winter), Brokeback (Tortoise, the Sea and Cake), Food Pyramid, BNLX, Moss Folk, Dosh, Paul Metzger, Invisible Boy (Polica, Vampire Hands), and so many more are helping raise bucks for Doctors Without Borders.

The Babes in Toyland Reunion
We do know that the Fontanelle-era lineup of Kat Bjelland, Maureen Herman, and Lori Barbero are playing their first live show in 18 years in Los Angeles this February. A Twin Cities date hasn't been announced publicly yet, but c'mon! (See also: The 12 Rods reunion at First Ave.)

Who else?! Holler at us about what else you're excited for in the new year.


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