The week's best concerts: Jan. 20-26

  • Vance Joy $35 7:30 p.m. Wed. Northrop

  • Enemy Planes $5 9 p.m. Wed. Cabooze

  • Mic Q.A. and Sieed Brown: A Family Function $6-$8 8 p.m. Wed. 7th St. Entry

Kitty Cat Klub, Thursday 1.21

Though just one album and now one EP deep into their catalog, Radio K favorites Straya have already proven to be virtuosos of multi-layered sound. On last year’s shape-shifting, full-length album Healthy Steps, the Minneapolis band’s emo/post-hardcore instrumentation and time-signature jumping made for thrillingly chaotic moments, while their softer ambient/post-rock maneuvering smoothed the edges. That penchant for different styles never came at the expense of cohesion. On lead vocals, Cody Nelson evokes Real Estate frontman Martin Courtney in quieter moments, and At the Drive-In/Mars Volta leader Cedric Bixler-Zavala when things get more convulsive. If, for whatever reason, none of that sounds appealing, at least do yourself a favor and Google the band for their hilariously random song titles (“Treat Me Like Prince,” “Killer Mike Saved My Life,” etc.) and social media activity (they’ve dubbed themselves as an “athletic rock band,” presumably a jab at label-happy music critics). This show at Kitty Cat Club, featuring supporting acts William Within, Strange Relations, and Maeth, marks the release of that aforementioned EP. 21+. Free. 9 p.m. 315 14th Ave. SE, Minneapolis; 612-331-9800. –Michael Madden

  • 35h Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute FREE 6 p.m. Thu. Ted Mann Concert Hall

  • Kill the Vultures $8-$10 8 p.m. Thu. Turf Club

  • Nazeem x Spencer Joles $5-$7 7:30 p.m. Thu. 7th St. Entry

  • Nicholas David $30-$40 7 p.m. Fri. Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant

  • Led Zeppelin 2 $17.50-$20 7:30 p.m. Fri. The Varsity Theater

  • Pert Near Sandstone's Winter String Band Gathering $17-$20/$26-$30 FOR 2-DAY PASS 7 p.m. Fri. The Cedar Cultural Center


First Avenue, Friday & Saturday 1.22-23

While biased national tastemakers continue to designate Brooklyn and Chicago as the foremost hotbeds for American music, 89.3 the Current has put a spotlight on Minnesota’s various musical eras, sounds, and cultures for the past 11 years. To celebrate that run, the station is throwing itself a two-night birthday bash at First Avenue. Slowcore pioneers Low headline Night One, a set that will be preceded by post-Sufjan indie-folker John Mark Nelson, rumbling rap super-trio Mixed Blood Majority, 2015 City Pages Picked to Click winners Bad Bad Hats, and rap experimenters Bones & Beeker. On Saturday, Replacements kid brother-turned-rock-elder-statesman Tommy Stinson gets top billing, wrapping up the night after performances by dance-rockers Gramma’s Boyfriend, brotherly country preservers the Cactus Blossoms, garage/gospel slow-burners Gospel Machine, and precocious punks Bruise Violet. Three decades after Purple Rain (the film) made First Avenue a household name nationwide, these lineups will make a case for the strength and variety of independent music in Minnesota circa 2016. 18+. $20. 7:30 p.m. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. –Michael Madden


7th St. Entry, Saturday 1.23

Atmospheric indie outfit Lower Dens have been a long time in the making. Led by the dreamy vocals of Jana Hunter, the Baltimore five-piece released Escape From Evil, their third album, in 2015 to widespread acclaim. The album showcases an emboldened step forward from their 2010 debut, Twin-Hand Movement — an album that, despite its reception, didn’t distinguish Lower Dens much from surf-wise pop bands like Best Coast and fellow Marylanders Beach House. On the LP’s lead single, “To Die in L.A.,” Hunter yearns for more from a corrupt society, a drive that manifests all over Escape from Evil’s surprisingly candid tracklist. Brooklyn’s Young Ejecta — which comprises members of Neon Indian as well as Oneohtrix Point Never — open the show with their harmonious brand of dream pop. 18+. $13-$15. 9 p.m. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. –Jerard Fagerberg


Skyway Theatre, Saturday 1.23

Savoy’s live show is like a goddamn episode of Dragon Ball Z. The critical mass of lasers barely makes sense to the human brain, and adding to the cortex overload is the twitchy, intense electronica that the Boulder trio pulse into the crowd. However, their recent 1000 Years EP showed that Savoy can bottle the madcap euphoria of their stage show, a fact that is punctuated emphatically with closing track “Love Is Killing Me,” which features Jurassic 5 rapper Chali 2na. Their sound is much closer to Daft Punk than Bassnectar, Flosstradamus, or other first-wave EDM bands, deriving heavy influences from rock ’n’roll. What that translates to is epic guitar solos chasing those mesmerizing, fantastical lasers. Spring for the VIP, sit back, and enjoy the chaos. 18+. $17-$22.50. 8 p.m. 711 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-333-6100. –Jerard Fagerbeg

  • 20 Dollar Love 20th Anniversary Special $10 7:30 p.m. Sat. Turf Club

  • The Hussy $10 9 p.m. Sat. Triple Rock Social Club

  • Nightosaur FREE 9 p.m. Sat. Grumpy's Bar & Grill

Aster Cafe, Sunday & Monday 1.24-25

Cover songs: They're the most fun thing in the musical universe, a fact not lost on the new cover-song series at Aster Cafe. The brand-new River Room Tribute Series provides local music stars a forum to pay homage to their heroes, all in a prime setting overlooking the Mississippi River and Minneapolis skyline. First up: Holly Hansen, fresh off her band Zoo Animal's final show, taking on PJ Harvey this Sunday. She'll tackle Harvey's 2000 classic Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea with trip-hop flavor. Then, on Monday, we have Chris Koza (Rouge Valley) and Ben Lubeck (Farewell Milwaukee) channeling the spirit of Gram Parsons as they cover country-rock pioneers Flying Burrito Brothers. Both nights will include cover songs as well as originals. $12-$15. 8 p.m. 125 SE. Main St. Minneapolis; 612-379-3138. –Jay Boller

  • Nile $20-$25 7 p.m. Sun. Triple Rock Social Club

  • Vicky Emerson (CD Release Show) $8-$10 5 p.m. Sun. Icehouse

  • Off the Cuff: Improvisational Jazz $5 8 p.m. Sun. Aster Cafe

Target Center, Monday 1.25

This is The End, metalheads. Metal high priests Black Sabbath have announced their final tour ever, with Minneapolis’ Target Center set to host the legendary pitch-black rockers. Sabbath, formed in 1968 in Birmingham, England, have endured various lineup changes through the decades, but this last hurrah will feature incomparable, variably coherent, bat-chomping frontman Ozzy Osbourne and two other original members: doomsday axeman Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler. Original drummer Bill Ward is currently feuding with his bandmates. The band’s killer string of early 1970s albums — Black Sabbath, Paranoid, Master of Reality —changed the rock ’n’ roll landscape, effectively inventing the blueprint for heavy metal. Their 19th and most recent album, the Rick Rubin-produced 13, issued in 2013, was their first since the mid ’90s. It’s rumored Sabbath will return to the studio with Rubin again, but no word on any official plans. As for The End tour, it “promises to surpass all previous tours with their most mesmerizing production ever,” boasts the press release, so look forward to that. $35-$149. 7:30 p.m. 600 First Ave. N. Minneapolis; 612-673-0900. –Jay Boller

  • War $35-$50 7 p.m. Mon. Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant

  • The Local Music Scene Presents Graham Simons $8-$10 7 p.m. Mon. Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater

  • JT's Jazz Implosion$8 all day Mon. Icehouse

  • Jeremy Messersmith $25 6 p.m. Tue. Hopkins Center for the Arts

  • The Knocks $15 7 p.m. Tue. 7th St. Entry

  • Last Tuesdays: Experimental Music Series $5 7:30 p.m. Tue. Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater