The week's best concerts: Nov. 25-Dec. 1

Serengeti will be at Mortimer's on Friday.

Serengeti will be at Mortimer's on Friday. Courtesy of the artist

Hey everybody, it’s a short work week for us at CP (and hopefully for you too), so here are enough music suggestions to get you through next weekend. Oh, and also, Thursday is not only Thanksgiving, but also my brother’s birthday. Happy birthday, Jonathan!

Monday 11.25

Leo Kottke @ Guthrie Theater
Kottke plays a medium-sized hall every year around Thanksgiving, typically to sold-out audiences. Although the program varies little, his between-songs patter is wittier (albeit much drier) than, say, Arlo Guthrie’s, and the cleanliness, speed, and filigreed innovation of his fingerpicking guitar style is simply an ongoing work of art. Other guitarists acknowledge his supremacy, and when he dies he’ll have his recordings as evidence for his GOAT and Mount Rushmore credentials. But even at 74, he’s a long way from that frame of immortality, and those headed for the Guthrie hold a ticket to temporary paradise. 7:30 p.m. $45-$57. 818 S. 2nd St., Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson

Bass Orchestra @ Icehouse
Every now and then a gig comes along that reminds you of the richness of the local jazz scene. This last night of Cody McKinney’s November residency at Icehouse features an ensemble of ten bassists, and every one of them is more than capable of holding down a rhythm section by their lonesome if necessary. That depth of expertise mitigates worries over the unwieldy nature of a bass orchestra. Expect to feel the vibration in your chest, and to have your mind tickled by the execution of the arrangements. 9 p.m. $10. 2528 Nicollet Ave. S., Minneapolis. More info here. —Britt Robson

Complete Monday music listings here.

Tuesday 11.26

Poliça @ 7th St. Entry
As winter prematurely arrives, a reminder to be careful out there: Two winters ago Poliça singer Channy Leaneagh fell off her roof while clearing ice dams from her gutters and wound up in a brace for months. (She’s doing much better now, thankfully.) You may not be surprised to learn that much of Poliça’s fourth album, When We Stay Alive, was inspired, whether directly or obliquely, by that event, though half of the songs were written before the accident. When We Stay Alive won’t be released till January 2020, so this two-night Entry stand—Poliça’s first time back on stage since Leaneagh’s injury—isn’t just a chance to see the band in a more intimate setting than usual, but also an opportunity to hear the music before the rest of the world. With Lady Midnight (night one) and Margaret (night two). Also Wednesday. 18+. 7 p.m. (night one) and 8 p.m. (night two). $20. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Keith Harris

Complete Tuesday music listings here.

Wednesday 11.27

Bobby Rush @ Dakota
For decades a stalwart on the chitlin’ circuit, bluesman Bobby Rush, out of Louisiana via Chicago, developed a raucous mix of slippery, southern-fried funk, blues, soul, and something he calls “folk funk,” often with risqué lyrics, and issued hundreds of recordings. His increasing profile led to a Grammy for 2016’s Porcupine Meat, and now at age 86 he still sounds vibrant, lithe, and decades younger on his new Sitting On Top of The Blues, anchored by his classic “Bowlegged Woman.” For this solo gig, Rush will handle guitar and harmonica. 7 p.m. $30—40. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis. More info here.—Rick Mason

Issues @ Varsity Theater
Issues combine Linkin Park’s cosmically grandiose, vaguely sociopolitical angst with an emo band’s bratty romantic whining. The Atlanta band’s new Beautiful Oblivion augments their crunchy metal riffs with bits and pieces of the corny pop genres they secretly enjoy, including heartwarming retro-soul (“Get It Right”), exaggerated Auto-Tuned crooning (“Tapping Out”), and their very own Michael Buble song (“Find Forever”). With Polyphia, Lil Aaron, Sleep Token, and Cold Kingdom. 4 p.m. $27. 1308 Fourth St. SE. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

Louis the Child @ Armory
Even for a trancey pop-EDM duo, Louis the Child write comically unobtrusive drops. On their mellow, sugary singles and EPs, the Chicago DJs arrange hushed vacuum noises (“It’s Strange”), metallic loops (“Slow Down Love”), and window shutters opening and closing (“Better Not”), pointing to a vision of EDM where the drop’s triumphalist tension has been resolved into confectionary softcore. 18+. With Duckwrth and John the Blind. 8 p.m. $36-$61. 500 S 6th St. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

SPCO: Open rehearsal for “Appalachian Spring” @ Ordway
Aaron Copland’s “Suite for Appalachian Spring” is an ideal starting point for folks who are curious but clueless about classical music. Winner of the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for Music, it was commissioned as the soundtrack for Martha Graham’s dance troupe, and its sprightly, limber passages provide perfect accompaniment in that regard, while exuding the bucolic splendor and wonderment implied in its title. When it isn’t summoning images of leaping dancers and mountain flowers in bloom, it’s delivering the fragrant resonance of strings in unison. 10 a.m. $10. 345 Washington St., St. Paul. More info here.—Britt Robson

Complete Wednesday music listings here.

Thursday 11.28

Complete Thursday music listings here.

Friday 11.29

Serengeti @ Mortimer’s
Critics toss around the word “prolific” pretty freely, but Chicago rapper David Cohn has earned ithe’s put out something like 30 full-lengths and half as many EPs in about 15 years, several of them collaborations, several of them featuring his greatest creation, the loveable white working class Chicago sports nut and Brian Dennehy stan Kenny Dennis. Last year’s Dennis 6e, produced by Minnesota’s own Andrew Broder, is a worthy addition to the KD saga, though newbies should maybe peep the video for “Dennehy” first to get their bearings. And of course “prolific” is only a compliment if your shit is consistently tight: Serengeti’s body of work rivals any 21st century MC’s, whether underground or mega-platinum. With Longshot, Lunch Duchess, and DJ Espada. 21+. 9 p.m. $10. 2001 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis. More info here.—Keith Harris

Pigface @ Cabooze
Originally a Ministry offshoot, Pigface evolved into a freestanding band unit when they developed their own demented, stark, percussive groove. Touring for the first time in 14 years, the band’s lineup currently includes founder and drummer Martin Atkins as well as a large rotating cast of fabulous rock characters. 18+. 6:30 p.m. $30-$35. 917 Cedar Ave S. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

Allah-Las, Mapache @ Fine Line
The L.A. quartet Allah-Las have cultivated a sound of laid-back psychedelia influenced by a slew of ’60s stuff, including surf, Beach Boys, Brit invasion pop, and ambling, vaguely swampy guitar escapades suggesting J.J. Cale and Jerry Garcia. Their vocal harmonies, pop hooks and gauzy, sepia-tone amount to an intriguing SoCal originality. The group;s new fourth album, LAHS, dispenses with some of the previous reverb, and adds some global influences. Mapache is equally languid: The duo’s close harmonies and bluegrass etchings suggest Laurel Canyon folk-rock. Tim Hill opens. 18+. 8 p.m. $20-$35. 318 First Ave. N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Rick Mason

Complete Friday music listings here.

Saturday 11.30

Kim Petras @ Palace Theatre
Kim Petras is an enthusiastic, well-studied avant-pop formalist, as chirpy and detached as PC Music or Charli XCX with cheerful ingenuity in place of calculated musical deconstruction. Of her two 2019 albums, Clarity is the straightforward synthpop genre exercise, Turn Off the Light the Halloween horrorshow, peaking on the warbled, gushy, self-explanatory “Death by Sex.” With Alex Chapman. 6 p.m. $33.50. 17 W 7th Pl., St. Paul. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

NRBQ @ Dakota
Over the past half century, NRBQ has gained a dedicated cult following thanks to its playful charm and quirky approach to a swath of music running from the Chipmunks to Sun Ra. The band’s magic is based on its joyful unpredictability and improvisational prowess, flitting among country, jazz, rock’n’roll, novelties, and dozens of other genres. After a hiatus, co-founder Terry Adams revived NRBQ in 2011, and its current lineup rivals its classic days, still putting grooves in orbit on albums like its new Turn On, Tune In, taken from radio broadcasts.  7 & 9:30 p.m. $20-$40.1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis.More info here.—Rick Mason

Pat Mallinger + Bill Carrothers @ Crooners
Mallinger is a Chicago-based saxophonist who can be fierce on both alto and tenor, with a classic but edgy attack reminiscent of Jackie McLean and Dexter Gordon. Pianist and former Twin Cities denizen Carrothers guested with Mallinger’s quartet on a pair of superb records earlier in this decade, and gets pushed into revealing his kindred hard-bop chops in that context. Whether these duets in the intimate supper-club Dunsmore Room provide similar fireworks or veer more toward Carrothers’ contemplative métier is really a no-lose proposition. 6 p.m. $20. 6161 Highway 65 NE, Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson

Kamaal Williams @ Fine Line
To demonstrate that he didn’t need the admittedly beneficent partnership of Yussef Dayes to further his journey into acid jazz, spacey fusion, and funky electronica, London-based keyboardist Williams dropped a disc, The Return, that was a natural continuation of the duo Yussef Kamaal’s Black Focus. Live, Kamaal’s keyboards front an interactive trio that very much represents the jazz aesthetic, and for every time you memory-check Roy Ayers’ Ubiquity, you can then veer toward Chick Corea’s days with Return to Forever. They also occasionally ramp up to rock out. 9 p.m. $18-$30. 318 First Avenue N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson

Complete Saturday music listings here.

Sunday 12.1

Complete Sunday music listings here.