Those celebrities sure did make some controversial statements this weekend, didn’t they? All the more reason to get off the internet and go check out some live music this week.
Waxahatchee, Hurray for the Riff Raff @ First Avenue
A dynamite double bill, featuring two great bands who took huge leaps forward in 2017. On Waxahatchee’s fourth album, Out of the Storm, Katie Crutchfield’s idiosyncratically gnomic lyrics are more plainspoken and direct, and her band’s sound is bigger and brawnier to match, all the better to vent her pointed anger at targets who seem to deserve nothing less. And on Hurray for the Riff Raff’s The Navigator, Alynda Segarra expands her already adventurous folk sound to take in the music of her Puerto Rican heritage while extending the narrative scope of her lyrics. 18+. 7 p.m. $18/$20. 701 N. First Ave., Minneapolis. More info here.—Keith Harris
Jen Shyu @ Icehouse
The vocalist of choice for such original thinkers as Steve Coleman and Bobby Previte, Jen Shyu has increasing emerged on her own terms as a multi-instrumentalist, dancer, and visual artist. She’ll be performing “Nine Doors,” a riveting tale of a six-year old girl who was the lone family member to survive an auto accident and is now guided by powerful female legends from Asian folklore. Much of the music stems from her 2016 Pi Records release, Song of Silver Geese. 21+. 9:30 p.m. $15. 2525 Nicollet Ave. S., Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson
Complete Monday music listings here.
Injury Reserve @ Skyway Theatre
Phoenix trio Injury Reserve are the first-ever notable rap act from Arizona, which means they’re under no pressure to live up to any established “Phoenix sound.” It’s a freedom that’s resulted in decidedly freewheeling, sometimes jazz-influenced songs, with boisterous MCs Stepa J. Groggs and Ritchie with a T trading verses over producer Parker Corey’s beats. With JPEGMAFIA. 6 p.m. $13. 711 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis. More info here.—Michael Madden
John Scofield/Joe Lovano Quartet @ Hopkins Center for the Arts
Guitarist John Scofield and tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano both fully blossomed in the 1990s when both were on Blue Note (and Lovano was often in Scofield’s ensemble). They have each since carved innovative stylistic niches without straying too far from the post-bop mainstream. Rigorous technique, supple creativity, a shared history, and a solid rhythm section in bassist Ben Street and drummer Bill Stewart all make this a first-class reunion. 7 p.m. $45/$12 for full-time students. 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins. More info here.—Britt Robson
Complete Tuesday music listings here.
No Age @ 7th St. Entry
After four whole years away, these two uncommonly direct L.A. art-punks have migrated from Sub Pop to Drag City, where Randy Randall’s ambient guitar clamor continues to summon beauty without ever faking grandeur, singer-drummer Dean Spunt still bashes with a linear determination that’s rarely brutish or impatient, and their lyrical epiphanies—more than ever—don’t seek to reframe your existence, but just help you make sense of your day. In short, this is comfort music for those of us whose anxiety responds better to controlled chaos than mindful silence. They luxuriate in their uniqueness (“A feeling that’s not felt/ By just anyone”), yearn inchoately (“There's so much I wish that I had”), critique elliptically (“We don’t talk much now that/ We don’t have to”), and threaten to take their ball and go home (“I got a lot to offer/ I don’t think I should bother”). They’ll keep bothering though. If they had it in ’em to quit, they’d have done it years ago. With Behavior and Aquarium. 18+. $12/$15. 8 p.m. 701 N. First Ave., Minneapolis. More info here.—Keith Harris
Robyn Hitchcock & His LA Squires @ Turf Club
Since his long-ago days with the Soft Boys, Robyn Hitchcock has put up as quirkily brilliant a body of work as could be expected from a quintessentially eccentric Englishman obsessed with the Beatles, psychedelia, and eggs. Or was it fish? Anyway, jangly nodules from the Brit Invasion have always fueled his erudite, surrealistic forays through the looking glass. These relatively rare full band gigs follow Hitchcock’s eponymous 2017 album, full of withering wit, twisted insight, nagging nostalgia, and magnetic melodic hooks. Tristen opens. Also Thursday, April 26. 21+. 7 p.m. $20. 1601 University Ave., St. Paul. More info here.—Rick Mason
Gao Hong and Issam Rafea @ Cedar Cultural Center
What characterizes a first-class metro area? Maybe one where Rafea, a Syrian oud master, meets up with Hong, a master of the pipa, the Chinese instrument descended from the oud. The two immigrants click, start having concerts where they spontaneously make up songs inspired by word suggestions from the audience. And on the night before their CD release show, they participate in a “History of the Oud” discussion with two Somali musicians at the Somali Museum of Minnesota. What a vibrant place to live. 7:30 p.m. $20/$25. 416 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson
Christian Sands Trio @ Vieux Carre
Sands was the kinetic pianist in Christian McBride’s best small ensemble, a player who stacks riffs with an unerring panache that makes you giddy hearing it. Last June he rolled into the Dakota behind his debut album, Reach, with his own trio of drummer Marcus Baylor and bassist Yasushi Nakamura and commanded the ivories on ballads as well as more blistering material. 8 p.m. $20. 408 St. Peter St., St. Paul. More info here.—Britt Robson
Complete Wednesday music listings here.
Best of the Twin Cities Party with Lady Midnight, DJ Shannon Blowtorch @ Orchestra Hall
What? Like you thought we were above a little shameless self-promotion? To celebrate our 2018 Best of the Twin Cities issue, which came out last Wednesday, we’re taking over Orchestra Hall and giving you a chance to get all fancied up, eat lots of great food, and tell your most/least favorite CP staffer how much you love/loathe him/her. Our Readers’ Poll winner for Best Club DJ, Shannon Blowtorch, knows how to start a party, and our 2017 Best Vocalist Lady Midnight will generate an aura of sensual, poetic mystique. VIP tickets are $65 for 6 p.m. entry. General admission is $30 for 7 p.m. entry. 21+. 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis. More info here.—Keith Harris
Complete Thursday music listings here.