The best Twin Cities concerts: 2/19-2/25

The best Twin Cities concerts: 2/19-2/25
Photo by Peter Larson

This warm week brings several shows to the Twin Cities. Lucius (above) will be playing a sold out show at the Cedar Thursday while Greg Brown sells out the next day. Strange Names plays the Triple Rock Thursday and Jeremy Messersmith spends the weekend playing two shows at First Avenue. The Graveface Records Road Show will feature artists such as the Casket Girls, the Stargazer Lillies, Gramma's Boyfriend, and Dreamend on Tuesday at the Triple Rock while Glasvegas is at First Avenue.

Wednesday 2.19.2014

Incan Abraham with Van Stee 
7th Street Entry
Psych Pop Infused
18+, $8/$10, 7:30 PM

Thursday 2.20.2014

Cedar Cultural Center
Sounding a bit like Neko Case trying her hand at danceable indie-pop, New York's Lucius have garnered tons of buzz for last year's debut, Wildewoman. Co-fronted by Berklee School of Music classmates Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig, the band has a knack for setting tightly intertwined harmonies atop irresistible grooves that has already landed their song "Turn It Around" in seriously heavy rotation on 89.3 the Current. Its pure pop acumen is sharp enough to potentially cross over to commercial radio a la Haim. With You Won't.--Rob Van Alstyne
All Ages, $15, 7 PM

Pontiak with Bloodnstuff
7th Street Entry
Brother Band
18+, $8/$10, 8 PM

Strange Names with Frankie Teardrop and SCRNS
Triple Rock
Garage Pop
18+. $5, 9 PM

Persian Leaps with A Splendid End and Monica LaPlante
Jangle Noise
21+, FREE, 9 PM

Friday 2.21.2014

Greg Brown with Bo Ramsey
Cedar Cultural Center
All Ages, SOLD OUT, 8 PM

Kind Country Album Release with The EverGreen Grass Band and Ginstrings
18+, $7, 9:30 PM

Sam Cassidy and the All Night Canyons with Speed's the Name and Brian Laidlaw & the Family Trade
Folk Rock and Roll
21+, FREE, 10 PM

together Pangea with Mozes & The First Born and Frankie Teardrop
7th Street Entry
Post-Millennial Punk
18+, $8/$10, 8 PM

Jeremy Messersmith with Rogue Valley 
First Avenue
Heart Murmurs 
18+, $15, 8 PM
Saturday 2.22.2014

Skinny Puppy with Army of the Universe
Mill City Nights
Raw Underground
18+, $25/$30, 9 PM

Jeremy Messersmith with Carroll 
First Avenue
Heart Murmurs 
18+, SOLD OUT, 8 PM

Dre Day 2014 feat. Plain Ole Bill, DJ Last Chance, Mally, La Manchita, Mike 2600 and DJ King Otto
Triple Rock
Dr. Dre Tribute
21+, $8/$10, 9 PM

The Farewell Circut, Adelyn Rose and BBGUN
7th Street Entry
Sonic Personality 
18+, $5, 8 PM

Paul Simon & Sting
Xcel Energy Center
World Renowned 
All Ages, $42-$252, 8 PM

Web of Sunsets Album Release with The Cactus Blossoms, Anonymous Choir and Invisible Boy
Turf Club
Synth Pop
21+, $10, 8 PM 

Sunday 2.23.2014

San Fermin
Turf Club
Brooklyn-based orchestral-pop outfit San Fermin is the brainchild of classically trained composer and Nico Muhly pal Ellis Ludwig-Leone. The group's stunning self-titled debut comes off like a darker and more sophisticated cousin to Sufjan Stevens's iconic Illinoise album. Dressed to the nines in lavish brass and string arrangements, the eight-piece live ensemble clicked on all cylinders back in October at the Bryant-Lake Bowl. Whether Rae Cassidy's sultry soprano or Allen Tate's menacing baritone takes the lead, they'll likely sound even sharper at Turf Club gig after spending much of their time on the road so far in 2014. With Son Lux. --Rob Van Alstyne
21+, $15, 7:30 PM

Empires with Liam hayes
7th Street Entry
Thick Skinned Charm
18+, $10, 7:30 PM

Monday 2.24.2014

Terence Blanchard
Dakota Jazz Club MONDAY 2.24 + TUESDAY 2.25
Over his prolific, 30-plus-year career, trumpeter Terence Blanchard has scored dozens of films -- including most of Spike Lee's -- while remaining a compelling and significant post-bop jazz artist. On last spring's Magnetic, Blanchard's cool, silvery tone leads his fine quintet (and a few stellar guests) through a modern soundscape that acknowledges bop and New Orleans roots. Both of the latter are most prominent on "Don't Run," which also reflects the blues and features Ron Carter's majestically plump, swinging bass and Ravi Coltrane's sizzling soprano sax. Elsewhere subtle electronic effects color Blanchard's trumpet, lending bubbling funkiness to the title track and spaciness to "Hallucinations." Above all Magnetic is a wonderful band album in the tradition of Blanchard mentor Art Blakey, with drummer Kendrick Scott, pianist Fabian Almazan, saxophonist Brice Winston, and bassist Joshua Crumbly all contributing tunes and glistening ensemble work.--Rick Mason
$45 at 7 PM $35 at 9 PM  

The Belle Game with Bomba De Luz and Strange Relations
Turf Club
Haunting Soundscapes
21+, $8/$10, 7 PM

Tickle Torture with Ava Luna, Krill and L.I.V.
Kitty Cat Klub
Future Funk
21+, FREE, 10 PM

Jackie Beckey with Mar Habrine, Dream Weapon and Lungs Face Feet
Cedar Cultural Center
416 Club Commissions 
All Ages, $5, 7 PM

Tuesday 2.25.2014

Graveface Records Road Show
Triple Rock Social Club
Though long-running indie label Graveface Records calls Georgia home, its ties to the local scene include recent releases from Minnesota music stalwarts like Dosh, Kid Dakota, and Haley Bonar's spazz-rock side project Gramma's Boyfriend. Bonar and co. will perform alongside a trio of other Graveface artists currently on tour across the nation. In keeping with the label's sonically adventurous spirit, they all sound markedly different from one another. The Casket Girls traffic in gothic electro-pop, while Dreamend's kaleidoscopic folk-rock will undoubtedly appeal to Animal Collective enthusiasts. Featuring the Casket Girls, the Stargazer Lillies, Gramma's Boyfriend, and Dreamend. --Rob Van Alstyne
18+, $10, 8 PM

Hayward Williams with The Sudden Lovelys
Midwestern Acoustic
21+, $6, 10 PM

Glasvegas with the Ceremonies
7th Street Entry
Scotland Rock
18+, $15, 7 PM

Nicole Atkins with Arc Iris and Davey Horne
Turf Club
Raw Ache
21+, $10/$12, 7 PM

Habib Koité
Cedar Cultural Center
Recent turmoil in Mali -- essentially a struggle to preserve the nation's rich multicultural heritage against Taliban-like troglodytes -- continues to elicit eloquent responses from its many superb musicians. Virtuoso acoustic guitarist, singer, and songwriter Habib Koité's newly released Soô, which means "home," is a simple concept that becomes profound in Mali's current context. Singing soulfully in several languages and characteristically incorporating diverse traditional elements from throughout the country, Koité addresses the crisis by celebrating Mali's roots, sharing its pleasures, waxing poignantly about war, and pleading for harmony. His music is sublime and seductive: alluring melodies picked with Western and Malian influences, simmering rhythms from djembe and calabash, Issa Kone's surprise turns on banjo, and subtle harmonies that sigh and whisper and seem to bring it all back home.--Rick Mason
$30, 7:30 PM

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