The Nine Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 4/10/15

Colleen Green
Colleen Green
Photo by Eric Penna

For more shows throughout the weekend, check out our New York Concert Calendar, which we update daily.

Friday, 4/10 Cock Sparrer Warsaw 7 p.m., $32 Back in 1976, the young punks in Cock Sparrer coulda been the next Sex Pistols, but they famously wouldn't cut their hair into a punk style for Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren. (Another story has the reason as McLaren wouldn't buy them a second round of beers.) Yet, as any punk worth her Docs will tell you, Cock Sparrer were soooo much better as musicians and songwriters than their snotty contemporaries. The band from London's East End floundered a bit after that McLaren miss, and went belly-up by 1978. Yet the beer-soaked power-pop punk songs from their '78 Decca Records album (released only in Spain) kept ending up on oi! and punk compilations. The group's ear for simple melodies pulled from England's football terraces, and its mix of junkshop glam, first-wave punk, and the Rolling Stones (even covering "We Love You") always gave them a sizable lead on other bands of the era. They reunited and released Shock Troops in '83, then Running Riot in '84, forming the bulk of material treasured by their fans. The band hasn't played New York City in fifteen years, despite stops in California, Philly, Baltimore, and Austin since then. But this weekend they'll be at Warsaw in Greenpoint. The Friday-night show sold out in a single day, but you can find tickets on the secondary market or try the Saturday show, which was quickly added. — Nick Lucchesi

Colleen Green Shea Stadium BK 9 p.m., $10–$12 Sub Pop's Hardly Art imprint — a reliable source of soul-soothing lo-fi and garage — has been on something of a Nineties kick of late (and who hasn't?). Like her labelmates in Tacocat, Colleen Green's lifting the bright spots from MTV's halcyon days and pulling from the pop and shrug of alt-rock radio. On her latest, I Want to Grow Up, she mines the sounds of the decade from a place of strength. She's appreciative of the era's high points, but no more nostalgic for it than Pearl Jam was for Seventies cock-rock in 1991. The show is sold out, but tickets are available on the secondary market. — Chris Kornelis

Philip Selway Le Poisson Rouge 7:30 p.m., $20–$25 Fleetingly reminiscent of Radiohead's In Rainbows, Philip Selway's second solo album, Weatherhouse, which was released via Bella Union last fall, confirms the heady rock drummer is just as adept at singing and songwriting as he is on the skins. Selway's band is in the midst of its first U.S. tour and includes Adem (Adem Ilhan, who also opens these dates), Quinta (Kath Mann), and Antibalas drummer Chris Vatalaro. — Linda Laban

Young Fathers Music Hall of Williamsburg 8 p.m., $16–$18 Young Fathers intend to be noticed. Not for fame, riches, or glory, but for opening dialogue and motivating important conversations regarding race and misconstrued ideas held across cultures. Throughout their new album White Men Are Black Men Too, a marriage forms between intriguing lyrics ("He cleans his pistols while I reload my pistols," as heard in "Dare Me") and infectious beats courtesy of Graham "G" Hastings's production. Almost instantly you can locate their charm, best exhibited in "Nest" at the 0:16 mark when the piano melody arrives. Opening for the Scottish trio are Mas Ysa and Glass Gang, and while tickets are sold out, options are available on secondary markets. — Silas Valentino

Diet Cig
Diet Cig

Upcoming Events

Diet Cig Baby's All Right 8 p.m., $10–$12 As of now there are only eleven minutes of released music from Diet Cig, a pop-rock duo based out of New Paltz, New York, just up Interstate 87, but in the five short, delightful songs found on their debut EP, Over Easy, it's fairly evident there's something worthy coming from this drummer-meets-guitarist combo. Singer Alex Luciano is relatable and endearing when she sings, "You still watch The Simpsons on my floor/Pretend like it's 1994," as heard in "Breathless," but spits venom in "Scene Sick" at every annoying musician or socialite who's ever bragged or boasted while holding a cheap cocktail. — Silas Valentino

Saturday, 4/11 Sufjan Stevens Beacon Theatre 8 p.m., $45 In some ways, Sufjan Stevens typifies the public caricature of a musician from Brooklyn: weird, borderline-unpronounceable name; pretty-boy good looks; a level of fame and success in the indie world that borders on Beatlemania while remaining relatively unknown to mainstream audiences. On the other hand, he thwarts the stereotype at every opportunity. He made his name on two decisively uncool, epically twee masterpieces about the history of Michigan and Illinois. His music is unapologetically spiritual, anchored in a Christian ethos highly unfashionable to indie rock's anti-establishment leanings. He's more likely to show up to a show wearing a Tron outfit or giant angel wings than a leather jacket and Ray-Bans. Touring in support of Carrie & Lowell, released March 31, the album is a spare, delicately beautiful affair, especially restrained when considering its maximalist, Technicolor electronica predecessor, The Age of Adz. Though the label belies the avant-garde streak that has always made his music more unpredictable than many of his soundalike peers (Iron & Wine or Andrew Bird, for example), much of the discourse surrounding Stevens frames him as a folk musician. — Corey Beasley

Diamond Rugs Brooklyn Bowl 8 p.m., $15 This isn't so much a supergroup as a gang of musical compadres united under a mutual admiration of crunchy guitars, scuffed melodies, and, just for the hell of it, a sax thrown into the occasional mix. Led by Deer Tick's ringleader John McCauley and conceived after he met Los Lobos' multi-instrumentalist Steve Berlin at a Nashville gig, Diamond Rugs is a good-time rock band whose breath reeks of stale beer but doesn't have time to worry about being taken too seriously because there's rock 'n' roll to be played elsewhere. Coming off the heels of their sophomore effort, Cosmetics, and relishing in their sweaty whimsicality is a band that won't mind exercising the F-U in fun. New Madrid kick things off as the opener. — Silas Valentino

Cinema Cinema ABC No Rio 3 p.m., $3–$12 Since 2008, experi-metal punks Cinema Cinema have jacked up the amps to ear-bleeding-loud levels, destroying DIY dives across the boroughs and beyond with their distorto-drenched post-grunge and damaged-funk assault. Born and raised here in NYC, six-string-slinging beardo Ev Gold and his drummer cuz Paul Claro are Brooklyn diehards to the core, bred on both the seminal punk of SST Records (they've toured with the recently reincarnated Black Flag) and D.C. hardcore (their 2012 epic Manic Children and Slow Aggression was recorded by Don Zientara, whose prior production credits include Minor Threat and Fugazi). Besides covering the holier-than-thou Nirvana and PJ Harvey, CC's most recent shredder, Night at the Fights, is an effects-pedal-stomping and time-signature-frenzied anthemic beast, captured in Gowanus at the legendary studio of Martin Bisi (Sonic Youth). For ABC No Rio's semi-regular hardcore/punk Saturday matinee, Cinema Cinema return to Rivington Street to burn your earplugs off with their hefty noise attack and dizzying complexities. — Brad Cohan

Sunday, 4/12 Stevie Wonder Barclays Center 8 p.m., $49.50–$165 There's a strong feeling among a vocal segment of rock 'n' roll authenticity subscribers that musicians should exist inside an artistic vacuum that is never penetrated by commerce. Another group believes artists performing anything other than their most recent artistic whims have compromised themselves. The popularity of iconic artists performing classic albums in their entirety has ruffled the aforementioned delusionists' cockles (this writer has not been immune to such bristling). But let's get real: It takes a certain kind of hater to see the negativity of a favorite artist playing the world's favorite music. There's a special place in hell (where "I Just Called to Say I Love You" is played on repeat) for people who hate the idea of Stevie Wonder performing Songs in the Key of Life in its entirety, so heaven is a place on earth in Brooklyn at the Barclays Center, specifically. The show is sold out, but tickets are available on the secondary market (for a pretty steep price). — Chris Kornelis



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