The Ten Best Concerts in NYC This Week, 4/29/13
Kim Gordon, ?uestlove, Andrew Bird and Andrew W.K. walk into a Masonic Temple ... these are the 10 best shows in NYC this week.
?uestlove + Kim Gordon + Andrew Bird + Andrew W.K. + Julia Holter + Vijay Iyer + DJ Spinna Brooklyn Masonic Temple Wednesday, 8pm, $15 Unexpected cross-genre collaborations can result in both head-banging brilliance (take Skrillex and A$AP Rocky's "Wild for the Night" or Public Enemy and Anthrax's "Bring the Noise," for instance) and head-shaking disappointment (surely you've by now heard Brad Paisley and LL Cool J's "Accidental Racist"). Expect a little bit of each tonight, when a roster of musicians including ?uestlove, Kim Gordon, Andrew Bird, Andrew W.K., Julia Holter, Vijay Iyer, and DJ Spinna takes over the Brooklyn Masonic Temple, mashing together rock, rap, noise, jazz, folk, and who knows what else, one duet at a time. -- By Nick Murray
Sona M'barek French Institute Alliance Francaise Friday, 8pm, $35 This magnificent Tunisian singer performs the Tunisian court music known as mulaf, Arabic classical music, and songs based on the poetry of Tunisia's Aboulkacem Chebbi, Spain's Gabriel Garcia Lorca, Turkey's Nâzim Hikmet, and France's Jacques Prévert. Philadelphia's Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture ensemble will accompany M'barek, whose appearance kicks off the French Institute Alliance Française's World Nomads Tunisia festival. -- By Richard Gehr
Tera Melos + TTNG Knitting Factory Brooklyn Thursday, 9pm, $10 Math rock with prog overtones is this Sacramento trio's forte, and they succeed where many of their contemporaries don't in part because they figured out that ever-shifting time signatures and sublime dynamics mean nothing if the tunes aren't there. On one release after another, its melodic instincts have grown stronger, and there has been a greater willingness to evolve beyond complex noise-rock instrumentals into full-fledged, vocal-limned songs in the manner of Jawbox and Polvo, only more fraught, compelling, and blisteringly alive; forthcoming full-length X'ed Out is their most confident entreaty yet. -- By Raymond Cummings
Kris Allen + Jillette Johnson Highline Ballroom Wednesday, 8pm, $15-$50 Though he's part of the soon to be dismantled long reign of White Guys with Guitars that took over the once-popular singing competition American Idol, Kris Allen will always be that class's most endearingly sweet. Three years ago, the season eight winner beat out Freddie Mercury-style showstopper Adam Lambert with his boy-next-door half-smile and a feel-good sound ripped straight from the Book of Mraz. In concert, don't be surprised if he steals your heart as swiftly as he did America's. -- By Brittany Spanos
Ed Simon Trio Jazz Standard Tuesday & Wednesday, 7:30pm & 9:30pm, $20 The pianist recorded his new live disc at the club last year, and as usual the oomph he gets from his extraordinary rhythm section highlights the polite (and cagey) touch he's become known for. The process reveals that gentility has its own kind of thrust, and as Simon thinks his way through these swinging pieces, he's responsible for lots of the band's unmistakable momentum. Icing on the cake? Watching drummer Brian Blade in action is one of life's true joys.-- By Jim Macnie
Johnny Marr, Healer.
Johnny Marr and the Healers + Alamar Irving Plaza Thursday, 7pm, $25 Thursday, May 2 Johnny Marr @ Irving Plaza With the release of Johnny Marr's first true solo album, The Messenger, the alt-rock guitar icon sounds as though he's finally rediscovered his interest in the jangly, dynamic passion plays he pioneered with the Smiths. And while the record undeniably lacks the tempestuous Shakespearean drama his former foil Morrissey brought to that band, it evokes the essence of Marr's alma mater. The real treat is that he's a capable enough singer in his own right, and in concert he's been blending set lists with Messenger tracks and songs he recorded with the Smiths and his '90s supergroup Electronic. -- By Kory Grow
Daughter Bowery Ballroom Tuesday & Wednesday, 9pm, $16/$18 As Daughter prepares to release their first North American EP, the trio must be realizing how little work turning heads across the pond actually requires. With a dreamy folk sound, the band falls somewhere between the introspective earnestness of the Avett Brothers and the urgent earnestness of Mumford & Sons, with some tinges of The xx's ethereal moodiness thrown in for good measure. In the end, they're a wholly refreshing entity with two sold-out Bowery Ballroom shows to prove it. -- By Brittany Spanos
Melanie Fiona S.O.B.'s Wednesday, 9pm, $28 The 29 year-old Fiona hasn't released a studio album since last year's The MF Life, a bluesy, blistering testament to love conquering all in the face of despair. Tonight, she tones down the synth and the reverb for an unplugged set, an intimate opportunity to hear her pluck the heartstrings on such breakup tunes as "Can't Say I Never Loved You," "Wrong Side of a Love Song," and "Gone and Never Coming Back." -- By Aidan Levy
Kronos Quartet Carnegie Hall Friday, 9pm, $54-$64 For the past four decades, San Francisco's Kronos Quartet has highlighted works by contemporary classical composers. Tonight, as part of Carnegie Hall's My Time, My Music program, it's performing the world premiere of You Know Me From Here, a piece by Brooklyn composer Missy Mazzoli, who has been creating lush, dramatic, and vibrant works for the past decade or so. The evening will also contain the New York premieres of Ukrainian composer Silvestrov's "String Quartet No. 3" and Serbian composer Aleksandra Vrebalov's Babylon, Our Own, as well as a performance of rock experimenter Laurie Anderson's "Flow." -- By Kory Grow
Fred Falke + Foals + Chrome Sparks + Jorge Bonjour Output Thursday, 10pm, $15/$25 The BMF of the "Alan Braxe and Friends" featured in the classic french house album The Upper Cuts, Fred Falke's most known filter art is with his other half. In addition to original work, the duo are deft remixers, accentuating a song's strengths and turning them into epic dancefloor masterpieces (see: either of their takes on Kelis' "Bossy"). But Falke's original work shouldn't be cast aside. 2008's Music for My Friends is an intimate seaside bonfire soundtrack--the rhythm guitarist on "8:08pm at the Beach" isn't Nile Rogers, but you still get that chic feeling. -- By Alexis Stephens
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