The week's best concerts: Oct. 26-Nov. 1

The Blind Shake (Photo: Provided)

The Blind Shake (Photo: Provided)

Rounding up the week's best concerts in the Twin Cities. 

  • JOAN BAEZ Oct 26th 7:00 pm at Historic State Theatre
  • ST. PAUL AND THE BROKEN BONES Oct 26th 7:00 pm at First Avenue
  • MESHUGGAH Oct 26th 8:00 pm at Mill City Nights

Schoolboy Q
Myth, Thursday 10.27
Los Angeles’ Schoolboy Q may be a gangster rapper in a few traditional ways. But ever since he broke through with 2012’s Habits & Contradictions, he’s challenged stereotypical notions of what “gangster rappers” do. He has hits — “Collard Greens,” “Man of the Year,” “Studio,” and “That Part” among them — but it’s the Black Hippy/TDE member’s albums that best showcase his knack for conceptual storytelling (particularly tales of L.A. gang culture) and adventurous beat selection (he’s rapped over everything from thick G-funk to space-trap). His latest, the dark and dense Blank Face LP, is widely being hailed as his best album yet, and it features some of the best collaborations of his career. There’s Kanye on second single “That Part,” Kendrick Lamar on the cinematic “By Any Means,” Vince Staples on the thunderous “Ride Out,” and E-40 on the hypnotic “Dope Dealer.” Brooklyn prodigy and boom-bap revivalist Joey Bada$$ opens. All ages. 7 p.m. $17-$147. 3090 Southlawn Dr., St. Paul; 651-779-6984. — Michael Madden

ZULUZULUU’s Astral Beat Series
Icehouse, Thursday 10.27
One of the most exciting groups in the Twin Cities right now, ZULUZULUU is a collaboration of established solo artists. The band — who, as they told City Pages earlier this year, “try to focus our music towards empowerment, being socially conscious, and being aware of inequities and speaking out” — generated buzz with live shows before finally releasing their debut album, June’s What’s the Price? While their sound is not easily categorized, they do warrant comparisons to other inventive artists — George Clinton’s groundbreaking funk, Prince & Co.’s Minneapolis Sound, and Shabazz Palaces’ abstract rap. Album highlights include the band’s cover of Syreeta’s Stevie Wonder-penned “Black Maybe” and the especially funky “Fades.” Thursday marks the start of the group’s month-long Astral Beat series at Icehouse, which is slated to feature special guests and be “an exploration of sonic innovations” with “new dimensions of sound each week.” Proper-T serves as the featured ZULUZULUU member for the first show, to be followed by MMYYKK, Greg Grease, and the full band for the second, third, and fourth shows. 21+. 10 p.m. $7. 2528 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis; 612-276-6523. — Michael Madden

7th St. Entry, Thursday 10.27
Take drag culture and performance art and thrust them into D.I.Y. punk and you get New York City queercore duo PWR BTTM. The duo of Liv Bruce and Ben Hopkins, both Bard College grads, unpack what it means to be young, flailing, and queer in upbeat, silly punk songs. Their debut album, last year’s Ugly Cherries, proves that envelope-pushing punk doesn’t have to be all serious, activist business all the time. With an overtly sexual band name and lyrics like “We can drink our beer out of a sippy cup / We can go to Disneyworld and fuck shit up” (“Dairy Queen”) and “I want to put the whole world in drag” (“Serving Goffman”), PWR BTTM refrain from taking themselves and their music too seriously, giving queer and ally listeners a safe and unintimidating space to be themselves without pressure or fear. Bellows and Lisa Prank open. 18+. 7:30 p.m. $10-$12. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. — Grace Birnstengel

The Hot Sardines
Dakota Jazz Club, Thursday 10.27
New York City’s the Hot Sardines play hot jazz that swings and sashays in a number of sizzling contexts spanning eras, oceans and styles. French singer Elizabeth Bougerol and NYC pianist Evan “Bibs” Palazzo founded the horn-heavy nonet (including a tap dancer) over their shared love of Fats Waller. The Sardines’ second studio album title, French Fries + Champagne, captures the band’s dichotomous nature: the hopped-up rhythm section and snarky horns kicking up gritty saloon fare on some tunes, while cultivating salon elegance with an additional string section on others. Meanwhile, Bougerol sings in both French and English, and the vintage bits acquire new character with undercurrents of contemporary zest. And vice versa. One highlight is a jump jazz romp through Robert Palmer’s ’80s hit “Addicted To Love.” Another is a rambunctious duet between Bougerol and guest singer/actor Alan Cumming on the erstwhile Ella Fitzgerald vehicle “When I Get Low I Get High.” On the other hand, the old Sammy Cahn nugget “Until The Real Thing Comes Along” is a sleek and sultry late-night lament, and the title track glides along on zinging strings. 7 & 9 p.m. $35-$45. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612-332-5299. — Rick Mason

Margo Price
Turf Club, Thursday 10.27 
Since the release of Midwest Farmer’s Daughter, small-town Illinois native Margo Price has been barraged with accolades and hailed as the second coming of Loretta Lynn. Price has cited male influences such as Merle Haggard and Neil Young, but Loretta is the closest comparison, sharing an ability to craft insightful, detailed narratives about real life trauma and sing them with clear-eyed, compelling conviction. Daugher, released last spring on Jack White’s Third Man Records, matches poetically rugged lyrics about gritty reality with classic country sounds. The highly personal opening track, “Hands of Time,” tells her story: losing the family farm, moving to Nashville, scrambling to make ends meet, dating a married man, losing a baby, turning to drink, and a subsequent brush with the law. Elsewhere, she echoes Loretta’s tough resilience (“I put a hurtin’ on the bottle / Baby now I’m blind enough to see”; “I gave you four years of chances / But you threw ‘em all away”), while the acoustic “World’s Greatest Loser” suggests Dolly Parton’s plaintive grace. The band conjures a nice honky-tonk swagger laced with splinters of blues, soul and funk from Memphis, where the album was recorded at iconic Sun Studios. Clever Nashville folkie Darrin Bradbury opens. 21+. 7 p.m. $16-$18.1601 University Ave., St. Paul; 651-647-0486. — Rick Mason

  • WET Oct 27th 7:00 pm at Triple Rock Social Club
  • BAD SUNS Oct 27th 7:00 pm at Fine Line Music Cafe
  • PLAYBOI CARTI Oct 27th 7:00 pm at Mill City Nights

Bleached Slang (Beach Slang and Bleached)
Triple Rock Social Club, Friday 10.28
Philadelphia band Beach Slang — who recently parted ways with guitarist Ruben Gallego in light of sexual assault allegations against him — had to change their approach to their current tour, turning their full-band show into an acoustic solo set by singer/guitarist James Alex. A solo set might not be ideal, considering the band’s signature sound, which has plenty of Replacements in its cathartic DNA and is figuratively and literally electric. Fortunately, Alex’s songs are just straightforward enough to hold up well in an acoustic setting, not to mention that tunes like “We Are Nothing” and “Too Late to Die Young” are actually acoustic to begin with. He’ll be joined by Los Angeles band Bleached, who broke through with their 2011 song “Think of You” and released their latest album, Welcome the Worms, in April. On both that album and 2013’s Ride Your Heart, they’ve excelled in a kind of fuzzy pop-punk that’s distinctly native to the West Coast, with an ever-present influence drawn from ’60s girl groups like the Shangri-Las. Hunny also performs. 18+. 8:30 p.m. $16. 629 Cedar Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-333-7399. — Michael Madden

  • YONDER MOUNTAIN STRING BAND Oct 28th 7:00 pm at First Avenue
  • 'HEYDAY: 35 YEARS OF MUSIC IN MINNEAPOLIS' BOOK RELEASE SHOW Oct 28th 8:00 pm at 7th St. Entry
  • THE PERSON & THE PEOPLE (RECORD RELEASE SHOWS) Oct 28th 8:00 pm at The Warming House

The Blind Shake
7th St. Entry, Saturday 10.29
Thunderous and prolific Twin Cities surf-rock faves the Blind Shake are back with a new album, last week’s Celebrate Your Worth. On it, brothers Jim and Mike Blaha maintain their scorched-earth intensity over the nine songs dropped via Memphis indie label Goner Records (Jay Reatard, King Khan, Ty Segall). Single “Broken Racehorse” chugs along with eerie psychedelics accented by blasts of noise-rock guitar, while “I Shot All the Birds” confesses to crimes against winged beasts with towering walls of fuzz and squiggly riffs. Saturday’s release party will be drummer Dave Roper’s last show, as he’s leaving TBS to focus on being a new dad while the group springboards into a month-long U.S. tour. The Blaha bros promise his replacement, “young buck” Karl Tebeest, will bring long locks to the notably bald band. Fury Things and Tongue Party open. 21+. 8 p.m. $8-$10. 701 First Ave. N.; 612-338-8388. — Jay Boller

  • THE OKEE DOKEE BROTHERS Oct 29th 1:30 pm at The Cedar Cultural Center
  • GENREBEAST: AN ANTI-GENRE RESIDENCY Oct 29th 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm at Gamut Gallery
  • ELLE KING (Rob Schneider's daughter!) Oct 29th 7:30 pm at Historic State Theatre
  • AMOS LEE Oct 30th 7:00 pm at Northrop
  • PETER HOOK AND THE LIGHT Oct 30th 7:00 pm at First Avenue
  • TOMMY STINSON'S COWBOYS IN THE CAMPFIRE Oct 30th 7:00 pm at Triple Rock Social Club
  • SOLID GOLD AND AERO FLYNN Oct 31st 3:07 pm at Turf Club
  • YELLOWCARD Oct 31st 8:30 pm at Mill City Nights
  • DAVINA AND THE VAGABONDS Oct 31st 7 & 9:00 pm at Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant

The Staves
Fitzgerald Theater, Tuesday 11.1
November is a pretty lean month for big-name shows, but that doesn’t mean you can’t catch a band on the rise. The Staves are a British trio that’ve charmed everyone from Tom Jones to Bon Iver into collaborations. Now, after attention-grabbing gigs opening for Nathaniel Rateliff and Florence and the Machine, the Staveley-Taylor sisters are becoming a sensation in their own right. The U.K. folkies are heading out on a short Midwestern headlining tour, which kicks off in St. Paul. There’s a lot to love on their recent Justin Vernon-produced LP, If I Was, from the meditative heartbreak of “No Me, No You, No More” to the exasperated farewell of “Damn It All.” The album is a departure from the Staves’ previous records in that it demonstrates rawness and vulnerability without ever losing its empowerment. You’ll leave the Fitz puffy-eyed and stronger than ever. Afterward, the Staves will follow up with five straight dates in friendly Wisconsin, including three sold-out shows in Vernon’s hometown of Eau Claire. 8 p.m. $22-$47. 10 E. Exchange St., St. Paul; 651-290-1200. — Jerard Fagerberg