The week's best concerts: May 18-24

  • Blackthorne: With Aziza, and Rifle Diet., 8 p.m. Wed., $5. Triple Rock Social Club, 629 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-333-7399,

  • Corpse Reviver (Album Release Show): With Spider John Koerner., 7 p.m. Wed., $12-$15. The Cedar Cultural Center, 416 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-338-2674,

  • The Tip: With Mill City Devils, and Tattooed Millionaires., 8 p.m. Wed., $8. 7th St. Entry, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,


Allison Russell and JT Nero — late of Po' Girl and JT & the Clouds, respectively — established Birds of Chicago as an idiosyncratic chamber Americana outfit. The duo initially took flight on their 2012 eponymous debut, featuring a particularly supple blend of folk, country, gospel, roots rock, and soul. On February's sophomore LP, Real Midnight, the couple now refers to their music as "secular gospel" for its spiritual flair and their belief in the transformative power of music. There's also Russell's glorious voice, which is radiant with gospel's intricate grace and uplifting fervor. Yearning, aching, caressing, and testifying, she helps define an overtly raw, immediate, rustic yet intricate BoC sound. The group's other key defining factor is Nero's near-obsessive grappling with mortality, which basically comes down to bittersweet memories ("Remember Wild Horses") and the fundamental title cut question, "What are you gonna do with your days left in the sun?" BoC's answer is creating sublime music that ripples through your soul. Ben Lubeck of Farewell Milwaukee opens. — RICK MASON

  • Red Bull Sound Select Presents: Twin Cities: Featuring Empress Of, Dizzy Fae, and RONiiA. RSVP at, 8 p.m. Thu., $3 with RSVP. Amsterdam Bar and Hall, 6 W. 6th St., St. Paul, 612-285-3112,

  • Communion: Twin Cities: Featuring Basecamp, Kiev, and Blue Healer., 7 p.m. Thu., $10-$12. 7th St. Entry, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,

  • Four Tet: With Ben UFO, Centrific, and Soulful Tryst., 9 p.m. Thu., $15-$20. The Loft, 711 Hennepin Ave. 4th floor, Minneapolis, 612-333-6100,


L.A. folksters Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros will play Surly’s first large-scale outdoor concert at its newish Prospect Park mega-brewery, along with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Presented by First Avenue and JAM Productions, the show will go down at what the Minneapolis brewery is calling Festival Field — the grassy area that housed SurlyFest last year. Capacity will be around 4,000, reports First Ave general manager Nate Kranz, which is comparable to the Cabooze Outdoor Plaza. If you’re unfamiliar with the Magnetic Zeros’ harmonious ditties, the 10-piece ensemble led by enigmatic frontman Alex Ebert dropped a new album, PersonA, in April. The Charles Manson-resembling California bros make an odd pairing with the New Orleans-based Preservation Hall Jazz Band, but the legendary jazz ensemble is joining the Mag Zs on tour this summer, spreading its joyous sound to art-folk weirdos across the country. 18+. Sold out. 5 p.m. 520 Malcolm Ave. SE, Minneapolis; 763-999-4040. —JARED HEMMING

  • Aaron Gorton (Album Release Show): With Momentary Lapse of Floyd, and Mark Joseph and Chris Castino., 9 p.m. Fri., $10-$12. Cabooze, 917 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-338-6425,

  • Flip Phone XXL: A Bey Dance Party: 9 p.m. Fri., $10-$12. First Avenue, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,

  • Tiny Moving Parts: With Prawn, Free Throw, and Infinite Me., 6 p.m. Fri., $12-$14. 7th St. Entry, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,


In some distant era, Art-A-Whirl was all about showcasing the work of visual artists. The arty northeast Minneapolis blowout has transformed over 21 years, and now live music and beer are equal — if not dominant — parts of the equation. For our music-section purposes, let’s explore the louder side of Art-A-Whirl. The live tunes at Grumpy’s on Saturday are highlighted by Twin Cities grunge-punk heroes Babes in Toyland, plus vintage-sounding Oakland garage act Shannon & the Clams. The 331 Club has indie-folk faves Communist Daughter and punk upstarts Bruise Violet on Friday, then thunderous hip-hop duo Kill the Vultures and Andrew Broder’s indie-rock band, the Cloak Ox, on Saturday. At Anchor Fish & Chips, you can catch (because fish!) neo-soul marvel Sarah White (Saturday) and Americana rockers Romantica (Sunday). Click here for a complete list of performers, plus the music lineups at Dangerous Man, Indeed, 612Brew, Bauhaus Brew Labs, Fair State Brewing, and Psycho Suzi’s. —JAY BOLLER



The follow-up to U.K. post-punk quartet Savages’ bristly, aggressive, pointedly declarative 2013 debut, Silence Yourself, is, perhaps surprisingly, all about love. True, it’s love in its full array of gnarly complications — jealousy, boredom, fear, betrayal. Or as Jehnny Beth sings direly, “This is what you get when you mess with love.” Which, Savages suggest, is an intense, feral ricochet between anguish and ecstasy. That exquisite tension also describes Adore Life, Savages’ sophomore release from January. The band’s sinewy, explosive sound ranges from rippling punk fusillades to grinding distortion, but it’s all underpinned by the melodic sense lingering in the howls of Frenchwoman Beth (distinctly echoing Patti Smith and Siouxsie Sioux). There are also the brilliantly ringing forages of guitarist Gemma Thompson and Ayse Hassan’s particularly juicy bass, while drummer Fay Milton’s volcanic rhythmic core is a marvel of fire and ice. Savages’ lyrical depth and intriguingly layered sound, stretching from new-wave hooks to dissonance, is reminiscent of Sleater-Kinney, and their future looks just as promising. Hardcore supergroup Head Wound City opens. 18+. $22. 9 p.m. 318 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8100. —RICK MASON



Back at the Entry for the second time since September, Los Angeles-via-Seattle band La Luz, led by Shana Cleveland, stand as one of the more unusual groups in the realm of modern surf-rock. Their jangly chord progressions and bright girl-group harmonies are distinctly balanced by dark lyrics and shadowy instrumental passages. It’s a set of sounds they seemingly mastered out of the gate, immediately impressing with debut EP Damp Face, and standout songs like “Sure as Spring” (which later opened their debut album, 2013’s It’s Alive). With last summer’s fuzzed-up sophomore LP Weirdo Shrine, the four-piece arrived at an even more organic place with help from garage-rock whiz and guitarist extraordinaire Ty Segall, who produced and engineered the album in a surf shop, seeking to capture the band’s established live presence. It’s safe to say the approach worked, as songs like “You Disappear,” “With Davey,” and “Hey Papi” crackle with rousing energy. With Sick Sad World and France Camp. 18+. 8 p.m. $12. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. —MICHAEL MADDEN



Based right here the Twin Cities, Okee Bros banjoist Justin Lansing and guitarist Joe Mailander have a great thing going. Every couple of years they set out on an adventure — canoeing the Mississippi, hiking the Appalachian Trail, riding the Continental Divide via horseback — film the fun, write some songs, collect Grammy hardware, and charm the socks off legions of kids and their parents. The duo’s clever, family-friendly originals score subtle educational points about friendship and resiliency, but mostly they’re grand tales in the spirit of Woody Guthrie — whimsical, inspiring, never patronizing. Equally affecting is the Okees’ fine mix of folk, bluegrass, string-band picking, and vocal harmonies, which will be fleshed out with a full band on these shows celebrating the release of Saddle Up, their new Western-themed album. With guests like Cindy Cashdollar, John Sebastian, and Carlos Medina, the Okees sort through such characters as Pecos Bill, Annie Oakley, and Buffalo Bill while venturing into Western swing, norteño, Navajo music, and Cole Porter to (cowboy) boot. $19.50. 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. 10 E. Exchange St., St. Paul; 651-290-1200. —RICK MASON

  • Trapper Schoepp: With Riverside Horns, Dusty Heart, and Cabin Essence., 8 p.m. Sat., $10. Turf Club, 1601 University Ave. W., St. Paul, 651-647-0486,

  • All Techno, All Night: Movement Send-Off Party: Featuring Mike Gervais, DJ Ken Hannigan, Leon J, and Jeff Swiff., 10 p.m. Sat., $10. First Avenue, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,

  • Gregg Allman: 8 p.m. Sat., $59-$69. Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd., Prior Lake, 800-262-7799,

  • Alma Afrobeat Ensemble: 7 p.m. Sun., $15-$20. The Cedar Cultural Center, 416 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-338-2674,

  • Chelsea Wolfe: With A Dead Forest Index., 7:30 p.m. Sun., $18-$22. Triple Rock Social Club, 629 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-333-7399,

  • Old 97's and Heartless Bastards: With BJ Barham of American Aquarium., 7 p.m. Sun., $25, First Avenue, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,

  • Beyoncé: 6 p.m. Mon., $45-$305. TCF Bank Stadium, 2009 University Ave. SE, Minneapolis, 612-624-8080.

  • Freddy Cole: 7 p.m. Mon., $30-$40. Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant, 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, 612-332-1010,

  • The Obsessed: With Atomic Bitchwax, and Karma to Burn., 7 p.m. Mon., $15. 7th St. Entry, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,


Ever since emerging in the late 2000s and separating themselves from dozens of fellow Brooklyn bands, Yeasayer have gotten more and more idiosyncratic. Over four albums, including last month’s conceptual Amen & Goodbye, the core trio of Chris Keating, Ira Wolf Tuton, and Anand Wilder has concocted numerous iterations of psychedelic pop. Typically, they feature neon vocal harmonies and an inventive sense of rhythm, filled in with a stunning range of influences. Even with the vastness, though, the bright greens and oranges they paint with are squeezed into more concise forms on singles like “2080,” “Ambling Alp,” “O.N.E.,” and “Silly Me.” Produced by Atoms for Peace drummer and Macalester alumnus Joey Waronker, Amen & Goodbye may be the group’s strangest work yet. That’s no slight, though, because Yeasayer’s music works best when their wildest ideas are apparent and flowing freely. With Young Magic. 18+. 7:30 p.m. $25. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. —MICHAEL MADDEN

  • The Cave Singers: With Blank Range., 7:30 p.m. Tue., $13. 7th St. Entry, 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis, 612-338-8388,
  • Daniel Bonespur (Album Release Show): With Eric Mayson., 10 p.m. Tue., $6-$8. Icehouse, 2528 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis, 612-276-6523,
  • Hot Jazz with Connie Evingson: 8 p.m. Tue., $8. Vieux Carre, 408 St. Peter St., St. Paul, 612-332-5299,