The week's best concerts: July 29-August 4

Charli XCX

Charli XCX

Zella Day •  $12-$14 •  7:30 p.m. Wed. •  7th St. Entry

Ringo Deathstarr •  $8-$10 •  8 p.m. Wed. •  Turf Club

Transmission •  free • 10 p.m. Wed. •  Clubhouse Jager

TV on the Radio


TV On The Radio were shaken to the core by the 2011 death from lung cancer of bassist Gerard Smith shortly after the release of Nine Types of Life. The intrepid sonic explorers’ next studio album, last year’s Seeds, is a reflection on Smith’s loss, essentially struggling through the pain and groping for answers in its first half, then moving on to acceptance and even optimism in its sunnier second. Smith isn’t directly referenced on the album, but it’s clear he’s the focus from the opening “Quartz,” with lead singer Tunde Adebimpe’s anguished laments adrift in an unsettling swirl of electronics and voices. Love and loss also dominate the more energetic “Could You,” with a gorgeous, horn-driven melody, and the new-wavish “Happy Idiot,” which strives for numbness against the hurt. Later, hope resurfaces on “Ride,” which conjures bright and shimmery “magic moments” after a contemplative piano intro, the Ramones-like “Lazerray,” and the concluding title track. Local experimental electronica trio RONiiA opens. 18+. $30. 7 p.m. 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. — RICK MASON

Everclear • $42.49-$47 • 8 p.m. Thu. • Mill City Nights

The Ike Reilly Assassination • $20-$35 • 8 p.m. Thu. • Fine Line Music Cafe

Sarah Bethe Nelson • $8 • 8 p.m. Thu. • 7th St. Entry

Secret Stash Records Revue


Besides dusting off vintage soul and R&B and resurrecting long-languishing careers, the Secret Stash folks have revived the classic soul revue, in this case packed with local treasures, some erstwhile prone to neglect. At the top of the bill is Sonny Knight and the Lakers, who’re riding high on the recent release of the scorching Do It Live, recorded last December at the Dakota. The revue also includes Wanda Davis, who became known as Minnesota’s Queen of Soul while performing locally in the’60s and’70s. Her 1970 45 covering Aretha’s “Save Me” is highly coveted by collectors. PaviELLE French is a St. Paul neo-soul powerhouse whose vocal gymnastics and impressive scatting are fueled by jazz-savvy funk. Maurice Jacox is the always fabulous singer/saxophonist and longtime member of Willie and the Bees. Black Market Brass are a swaggering big band whose clustered horns sizzle through exotic (by local standards) Afrobeat and global funk with hints of Township Jive. Rounding out the lineup is Cameron Kinghorn, a fine jazz-soul vocalist who’s the frontman for Nooky Jones as well as BMB’s trumpeter. 18+. $17-$20. 8 p.m. 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. — RICK MASON

Border Battle Weekend


If politics were on the agenda at this Minnesota-Wisconsin clash, it would be Daytonian enlightenment vs. Walker-esque grim myopia. Happily, it’s about good, roots-oriented, even visionary music from both sides of the line, plus plenty of liquid enlightenment in a flood of 23 craft beers from both states. Things will get underway Friday evening and conclude with a bluegrass brunch Sunday morning. But the bulk of the action will take place all day Saturday, with eight bands from each state going at it on two stages. The Minnesota contingent includes the White Iron Band’s rootsy, North Country rock; Charlie Parr’s folk and country blues; the acoustic, bluegrass-inspired Useful Jenkins; and the roots’n’ blues rockin’ Crankshaft & the Gear Grinders. Wisconsin representatives will include Field Report’s Chris Potterfield playing solo versions of his folk-rock material; Hugh Bob & the Hustle’s gritty country rock; the nouveau string band Dead Horses; and Trapper Schoepp, who mixes up gritty rock ’n’ roll and twangy country rock. Check out the full schedule at $25-$43; camping $20. 715 Spring St., Somerset, Wis. — RICK MASON

Boombox Cartel • $15 • 9 p.m. Fri. • The Loft 

5 Seconds Of Summer • $29.50-$69.50 • 7:30 p.m. Fri. • Xcel Energy Center

Summer Slaughter Tour • $25 • 2 p.m. Fri. • The Skyway Theatre

Har Mar Superstar • $15 • 6 p.m. Fri. • Amsterdam Bar & Hall 



Have an insatiable appetite for mudbugs, akvavit, and indie rock? Get your Scandophile butt down to Bachelor Farmer for the fourth annual crayfish blowout known as Kräftskiva! Experimentally inclined local syth-pop stars Poliça top the bill, which also includes orchestral New York indie-rock act Ra Ra Riot, fellow locals Rouge Valley, and DJ Jonathan Ackerman. The outdoor block party is Poliça’s only show remaining on their summer tour schedule. Suds will come courtesy of Fulton, with fancier drink options available from the cocktail wizards at the adjoining Marvel Bar. All proceeds benefit the Mississippi River Fund, so feel noble as you rip apart those delicious freshwater crustaceans by the fistful. 5 p.m. $20-$25. 50 N. 2nd Ave.; 612-206-3920. — JAY BOLLER



Rock ’n’ roll for a good cause: It’s an old mantra that, um, never gets old. Raising funds for addiction-recovery center Hazelden, this third annual festival takes place near serene South Center Lake and showcases local music in the Minnesota outdoors. Performers will include folk-soul favorite Caroline Smith, rapper Astronautalis, indie-folker Haley Bonar, jazzy blues quintet Davina and the Vagabonds, club staple GB Leighton, and DJ Last Word. Hosted by 89.3 the Current’s David Campbell and featuring special guest speaker Mackenzie Phillips, it’s a day of local headliners that spans the afternoon but ends before the mosquitos come out. Just 45 minutes from the Twin Cities, the smoking- and alcohol-free event will also feature a petting zoo, PBS’ Super Why!, and more. All ages. $15-$25. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. 15251 Pleasant Valley Road, Center City; 651.213.4200 – LOREN GREEN

I Self Devine • $10-$12 • 8 p.m. Sat. • 7th St. Entry

Rise Against • $33-$38 • 5 p.m. Sat. • Cabooze

Neurosis • $25-$30 • 9 p.m. Sat. • Mill City Nights 

Woody Allen and his New Orleans Jazz Band • $53.50-$104 • 7 p.m. Sun. • Historic State Theatre

Brandi Carlile • $56-$60 • 4 p.m. Sun. • Cabooze

Django Django • $20 • 7:30 p.m. Sun. • First Avenue

The Kills • $25 • 7:30 p.m. Mon. • First Avenue

Bear's Den • $14 • 7:30 p.m. Mon. • Turf Club

Chastity Brown • free • 7 p.m. Mon. • Loring Park

Kelly Clarkson


Consider it a testament to the enduring likability of Kelly Clarkson that she’s still filling arenas right as American Idol is about to drag what’s left of its mangled carcass into its final, pathetic season. Clarkson’s massive voice and girl-next-door charms will rightfully outlive the cultural behemoth that birthed her. And while her latest album shows more than a few signs of her formula yellowing, she’s still the reigning queen of road trip singalongs, from “Since U Been Gone” to current single “Heartbeat Song.” Despite a few recent flirtations with EDM, Clarkson appears to be in the midst of a career sea change. She has stated an interest in country music — no doubt aided by new mother-in-law Reba McEntire — now that she’s free from the contract she won 13 years ago on the first season of Idol. Until then, Clarkson’s still in Top 40 mode, promising an evening of sassy kiss-off anthems, soaring ballads, and the type of gimmick-free pop music that parents can feel safe sending their 12-year-olds to, allowances in hand. Clarkson will be joined by a cappella group Pentatonix, truly the modern embodiment of Up With People. All ages. $29.50-$99.50 7p.m. 155 Randolph Ave.; 651-726-8240 — MARCUS MICHALIK

Charli XCX and Bleachers


One could make a pretty easy argument that Charli XCX’s bratty snarls had more to do with “Fancy” becoming last year’s bona fide Song of the Summer than Iggy Azalea’s belabored, mush-mouthed verses. Sounding like a cross between the Sex Pistols, Gary Glitter, and Gwen Stefani on her 2014 sophomore album, Sucker, Charli casts herself as the unaffected cheerleader sneaking smokes under the bleachers over the sounds of kick drums, hand claps, and near-shouted vocals. At only 22, the English pop singer sounds like she’s still having fun with her persona; she’s immersing herself so fully into this temporary tattoo world that it’s easy to forget she was a critically acclaimed but commercially negligible neo-goth act just a few years ago. Whoever the “true” Charli is, her pop instincts are killer, creating surprisingly dense pop confections out of aimless defiance. Co-headlining is Bleachers, the new-wave side project of fun.’s Jack Antonoff. All ages. $30.50-$36.50 5 p.m. 917 Cedar Ave.; 612-338-6425 — MARCUS MICHALIK

Bombino • $20-$22 • 7 p.m. Tue. • The Cedar Cultural Center

Soak • $10 • 7:30 p.m. Tue. • 7th St. Entry

James Bay • $26.50-$35 • 7 p.m. Tue. • The Varsity Theater