The week's best concerts: Oct. 14-20

Chance the Rapper

Chance the Rapper

  • The Underachievers — Oct. 14, First Avenue, $18

  • No Joy — Oct. 14, Turf Club, $15

  • Wye Oak — Oct. 14, Aria, $25


Last year bassist Harmony Tividad and guitarist Cleo Tucker released a self-titled EP of bratty, dirty, righteous songs with titles like “Blah Blah Blah” and “Slutmouth.” Nobody minded that they didn’t have a drummer and nobody would have minded if they did. But a third musician would ruin their debut full-length, Before the World Was Big, a series of musical trust falls that reimagines the Roches as a K Records band. Tividad and Tucker almost always sing together, harmonizing when necessary, so when they break into vocal rounds on the title track it’s like a vase shattering. Their voices are shaky but not fragile, occasionally brash and never hushed; Tucker’s guitar sometimes locks into Tividad’s measured bass thump and sometimes decorates it with fuzz. They sound strikingly conscious of each other’s presence throughout, and just enough hesitant enough to make their self-assertion feel like an achievement. 18+. $10-$12. 8 p.m. 629 Cedar Ave. S.; 612-333-7399. –- KEITH HARRIS

Chance the Rapper


Chance the Rapper is in a league of his own. Acid Rap, his stellar 2013 mixtape, showcased the eccentric emcee's dynamic vocals and undeniable pop smarts. Flanked by formidable collaborators that include Action Bronson and Childish Gambino, the album is a polished slab of playfully spry hip-hop that's peppered with elements of soul, gospel, and acid jazz. Much of that good-natured energy can be attributed to Chance's naturally endearing disposition. The Chicago rapper is neither enlightened nor hardened; he espouses a sort of feel-good sincerity that never feels forced or staid as he scats and spits his way toward every chorus. In fact, Acid Rap was so successful that Chance received a contract to record with Kendrick Lamar's label Top Dawg Entertainment (which also features ScHoolboy Q and Ab-Soul), but ultimately decided to stay independent. Instead, he joined forces with his band Donnie Trumpet and the Social Experiment for their funk-infused debut Surf, which was released earlier this year to widespread acclaim. Chance is still an unknown to mainstream audiences, but he's a profoundly likable — not to mention talented — artist who carries some serious commercial potential. However, he's made it clear that what he does with that potential is entirely up to him. All ages. $39.95-$45. 6:30 p.m. 3090 Southlawn Dr., Maplewood; 651-779-6984. – RAGHAV MEHTA

  • Peaches — Oct. 15, First Avenue, $15

  • Vacationer — Oct. 15, 7th St. Entry, $15

  • MS MR — Oct. 15, Varsity Theater, $26-$31
Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band


Last year, we got Paul McCartney at Target Field. This year, we get the other living/lovable lad from Liverpool: Ringo Starr. The Beatles legend, 75, has two projects to promote this time around: his 18th solo album, March’s Postcards from Paradise, and Photograph, his new book featuring more than 200 candid snapshots from his rock ‘n’ roll life. Generously named, the current lineup of His All-Star Band includes Todd Rundgren, Gregg Rolie (Journey), Steve Lukather (Toto), and Richard Page (Mr. Mister). Starr, of course, holds a tenuous yet celebrated Twin Cities connection. On January 31, 2010, Mr. "Yellow Submarine" himself strutted onstage at the Grammys sporting an Electric Fetus T-shirt. Minneapolis City Hall tolled its bells; children wept with joy; debates over Starr's questionable drumming chops vanished into ash. It turns out the shirt was a Christmas gift from events coordinator Christian-Philippe Quilici, Ringo's nephew. With a little help from his friends, Ringo was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist in April after Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, and Dave Grohl used their rock-star superpowers to successfully lobby for his inclusion. $83.50 to $154.00. 8 p.m. 805 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-339-7007. – JAY BOLLER

The Sword


With modern day metal’s barometer swinging wildly between the boiling highs of Mutilation Rites’ black metal and Pallbearer’s chilly doom, stoner stalwarts the Sword play like dead-center classicists. The Austin, Texas, group’s catalog builds upon the sonic cues of ‘90s Sabbath-revivalists such as Sleep, while still copping some of the celestial grandeur that’s trickled into the genre after decades of prog-rock kids and metalheads sharing high school lunch tables. Unfortunately, their latest effort, August’s High Country, incorporates a spectrum of parlor tricks no fan is likely asking for (Cake called; they want their vibraslap back.) Still, most of the record's songs manage to “get there” in a conventional sense, which is why the majority of the Sword's fans have flocked to them in the first place. 18+. $16-$18. 8 p.m. 111 N. 5th St.

Minneapolis; 612-333-3422. –- ANDY PENKALSKI

  • Natalie Haas — Oct. 16, Cedar Cultural Center, $22-$25

  • The Neighbourhood — Oct. 16, First Avenue, $30-$35

  • Matt Nathanson — Oct. 16, Triple Rock Social Club, $32.75
Zombie Pub Crawl


Now in its 11th year, Zombie Pub Crawl — that annual parade of the drunk undead — will again takeover various downtown Minneapolis hubs. Among the headliners: pop music mash-up ace Girl Talk, dubstep luminary Seven Lions, early-'00s pop-punk throwbacks Sum 41, and "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" hitmaker ... Soulja Boy! As for the ironic/nostalgic portion of the bill, you've got Jenny of Ace of Base. No, not the entire, still-active AoB crew, just former lead singer Jenny Berggren, who's being billed by her first name. (There's some drama and confusion surrounding her exit from the sugary '90 Swedish group.) The party will continue with Aaron Carter, the younger brother to Backstreet Boy Nick Carter and the blonde highlights behind 2001 hit "That's How I Beat Shaq." He's somehow just 27; he was last seen drinking at the CC Club — seriously! Local artists include sex-pop provocateur Tickle Torture, apropos gore-metal vets Impaler, and others. As always, the World Brain Eating Championship will go down amid the rivers of fake blood and real booze. No word on whether drunk zombie Santa plans on going hard again after breaking into a St. Paul home last year. He made our state proud by making national headlines. $16.66 - $100. 5 p.m. Various downtown locations; more info at – JAY BOLLER

Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt


Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt both rank among the cream of contemporary songwriters. Both are deeply idiosyncratic, eclectic in their influences and scope, loaded up with irony and sly humor, and unflinching in sifting through the quirky loam of the American experience. Lovett, the lanky Texas cowboy whose observations are as sharp and wit as dry as the prairie wind, is the surrealist of the pair; his storytelling exploits range from blues to folk, gospel to jazz. Hiatt is a bit more of a rock ’n’ roller at heart, albeit with a strong streak of country-peppered with blues. His finely detailed songs range from poignant to wicked, and his four-decade catalog ranks as one of the richest of the era. This is billed as an acoustic evening, with Lovett and Hiatt swapping quips and tunes, tossing in some harmonies, and having a grand time. $48.50-$79. 8 p.m. 805 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-339-7007. –- RICK MASON

Scottie Miller Band


Minnesota Blues Hall of Famer Scottie Miller primarily is known as a north star piano professor; an ace ivories tickler adept at a wide array of roots styles originating in such seminal spots as New Orleans, Memphis and Chicago. It was that expertise that helped him land an ongoing gig as Texas roots singer Ruthie Foster’s touring pianist. But on the revamped Scottie Miller Band’s new album, Reciprocation (whose release will be celebrated at this Dakota gig), Miller only plays piano on one tune — the appropriately rollicking “Too Far Gone” — instead opting for Wurlitzer electric, Hammond B3 organ and even guitar on one occasion to define what’s essentially a blues-saturated rock album. A solid and impressively spirited collection of Miller originals sporting gritty hooks and crafty lyrics, it cooks with infectious intensity, thanks in part to the protean escapades of new SMB guitarist Patrick Allen and the slippery rhythm section of drummer Mark O’Day and bassist Dik Shopteau. Miller is a fine, soulful vocalist who can crank up a powerful yowl if necessary, but is even better etching the dilemma of the hapless pot dealer on “I’ve Been Made” or exploring Dr. John-like Crescent City intricacies on the funky “Where You Been Hiding.” $10. 8 p.m. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612-332-5299. — RICK MASON

  • Jarabe de Palo — Oct. 17, Cabooze, $30-$40

  • Cage — Oct. 17, Amsterdam Bar & Hall, $12-$15

  • Rachael Yamagata — Oct. 17, Triple Rock Social Club, $20-$25
Pedrito Martínez Group


Havana-born percussionist and singer Pedrito Martínez learned the fundamentals of African-derived rumba on neighborhood street corners. By his teens he was playing in top Cuban rumba bands, later left the island to tour with Canadian saxophonist Jane Bunnett, then settled in the New York area. Over the past decade and a half, he’s established himself as a dynamic performer, bandleader, and coveted sideman, juggling trad Afro-Cuban music with an innovative array of influences running to jazz, funk, gospel, and soul. Martínez has played with everyone from Sting and Paul Simon to Wynton Marsalis, and John Scofield; the latter pair were guests on PMG’s 2013 eponymous album, which was nominated for a Grammy. On it, Martínez’s congas and batá drums ignite scintillating, often spectacularly tricky rhythm patterns. The Ordway will sport a dance floor for this show, because it’s virtually impossible to sit still for these rapturous rhythms. $23-$45. 7:30 p.m. 325 Washington St., St. Paul; 651-224-4222. – RICK MASON

  • SOJA — Oct. 18, First Avenue, $20-$25
  • Mac Miller — Oct. 18, Mill City Nights, $35-$38
  • Youth Lagoon — Oct. 19, First Avenue, $15
  • MAX — Oct. 19, Triple Rock Social Club, $18-$20
  • The Lone Bellow — Oct. 20, Varsity Theater, $20-$25
  • Neon Indian — Oct. 20, First Avenue, $16-$18