The Five Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 11/9/12


Here, in no particular order, are five shows this weekend you should make it out to.

Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival
Music Hall of Williamsburg
Friday & Saturday, $35
Why hold a festival at one venue when you can hold it at six? And why hold it across the city when there are six perfectly good venues only blocks apart? Such are the questions posed by the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival, which, for its fifth anniversary, takes over Williamsburg’s North 6th Street to bring two nights of the best dance parties you’ll find anywhere. Tonight, you might want to catch Nadastrom bringing their dembow-based Moombhaton Massive party up from D.C.. Then, tomorrow, head to Public Assembly to see local bass enthusiasts Jubilee, Dre Skull, and Dubbel Dutch holding down the back room with help from Poirier and Toddla T. Held at various venues around North 6th Street between Kent and Berry avenues in Brooklyn.By Nick Murray

‘Jazz Composers Collective Festival’
Jazz Standard
Ends Sunday, 7:30pm & 9:30pm daily, $30
Pooling ideas around shared interests worked wonderfully for a clique of young improvisers a couple of decades ago. Now this extended family, which stretches from bassist Ben Allison to pianist Frank Kimbrough and saxophonist Michael Blake, reunites mainly to celebrate anniversaries. This week’s program is enticing enough to warrant a visit each night, but I’d make sure to be there for Ron Horton’s Sextet (which utilizes all the group’s mainstays), as well as the JCC’s forays into the songbooks of Jim Hall and Herbie Nichols. — By Jim Macnie

Mahsa Vahdat & Mighty Sam McClain
Roulette Brooklyn
Sunday, 7pm, $20-$25
Forget about Marvin Gaye and Tami Terrell. Persia meets the blues in the unlikely duet of Mahsa Vahdat, a Tehran-born singer steeped in the highly ornamented traditions of Iranian music, and Sam McLain, a Louisiana-raised gospel and r&b shouter. The duo simultaneously sings convincingly in English and Farsi on their convincing second album, A Deeper Tone of Longing: Love Duets Across Civilizations. — By Richard Gehr

Highline Ballroom
Sunday, 8pm, $15-$20
In recorded form, the long-running hardcore and metal band Converge are so visceral, they sound like a force unto themselves: endless arrays of screamed vocals, whirlwind drums, and feedback-drenched guitar. The stage, though, is where their apocalyptic aural assaults take physical form, as they strangle their instruments and expextorate vocals like some sort of unified noise gang. Frontman Jacob Bannon turns red as he deflates his lungs to their flatulent capacity, and the rest of his crew flail themselves about, somehow replicating the series of squalls, chugs, and wheedles they put to tape. Their eighth full-length, this year’s All We Love We Leave Behind, finds them exercising more of their extreme punk side (with a sprinkling of well-placed jazz excursions), which could make for the decades-old group’s most intense concerts yet. With fellow forward-thinking extreme musicians Torche, Kvelertak, and Whips/Chains. — By Nick Murray

Barbara Carroll
54 Below
Ends Sunday, 1pm, $30-$40
The bookers at this new hit establishment continue their winning streak by inviting the first lady of jazz-classical piano to resume the series of brunch appearances she turned into boîte gold at the Algonquin’s now-shuttered and very much missed Oak Room. She sings, too, in a light tone that further vitalizes every standard she chooses to explore. Look for bassist Jay Leonhart doodling at her side. – By David Finkle

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