The 10 Best Concerts in New York This Week, 1/27/14


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

Monday, 1/27:

Billy Joel
Madison Square Garden
8:00 p.m., $64.50-$124.50
Las Vegas was once the go-to spot for legendary musicians looking to settle down for a residency, but it looks like MSG and Billy Joel have found a way to take that concept home to New York. After playing a New Year’s Eve show at Barclays, the Bronx-born, Long Island-bred performer, who has provided the pop and rock canon with an endless list of iconic, timeless, and modern standards, is preparing a monthly residency at the Garden from now until we’re sick of him. From the first seven sold-out shows, the end of this East Coast franchise isn’t going to arrive for some time — the Piano Man’s got us feeling alright. — By Brittany Spanos

Jim Campilongo Trio
Rockwood Music Hall
8:00 p.m. & 10:00 p.m., free
Recorded under the influence of electric Miles, this nuance-savvy guitarist’s new Dream Dictionary contains symbolism to spare. Campilongo hangs on to the laid-back, Americana-tinged twang of his earlier nine albums while heading in a decidedly headier direction with bassist Chris Morrissey and drummer Josh Dion. The three will be here every Monday night for the foreseeable future. — By Richard Gehr

Euan Morton
The Players Club
7:00 p.m. & 9:30 p.m., $25-$35
The venerable establishment introduces a cabaret series, “Live From Gramercy Park,” with the ever-ready and ever-red-hot fellow who came to these shores as Boy George in Taboo and stayed to prove he can do just about anything. The material this time covers ragtime and ’20s jazz and blues. So Scott Joplin, Jelly Roll Morton, and Duke Ellington will all turn up and get their due. Grandpa Musselman and His Syncopators, led by trombonist Matt Musselman, is the six-man band in support. — By David Finkle

Tuesday, 1/28:

Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound
Rockwood Music Hall
7:00 p.m., $12
This Jazz Fest-steeped Milwaukee songwriter and radio DJ is a terrific performer in the curatorial mode of, say, Elvis Costello. He’s heard every great r&b, soul, and country side, ever, and stirred them all into something fresh and captivating. He’s got the moves and feel, then lets his masterful Tomorrow Sound band do the rest. He also has a snazzy new album called Fine Rude Thing, which just about sums him up. — By Richard Gehr

Wednesday, 1/29:

Keith Urban + Little Big Town + Dustin Lynch
Madison Square Garden
7:00 p.m., $39.50-$82.50
It might miff some country music listeners that one of their most beloved stars, Keith Urban, is New Zealand-born and Australian-raised. Regardless of his Southern hemisphere roots, Urban has brought a pop sensibility and a knack for inescapable hooks to the rootsy genre. After topping the country charts fifteen separate times, Urban has settled into superstar territory with lovestruck and love-lost guitar-barbed tracks. Expect a whole lot of charisma and feel good tenderness from Nicole Kidman’s husband. — By Caitlin White

Wednesday, 1/29:

Eagulls + Yvette
The Mercury Lounge
6:30 p.m., $10
As high-octane debuts go, Eagulls’s Eagulls is a doozy, an able re-invigoration of post-punk potency without minimalist baggage that isn’t above (or below) a melodically-sound hook, or twenty. (There’s certainly some Blur and Smiths buried in their plucky clangor, some shoegaze as well.) Sometimes the bass hauls the water, but the guitars do their fair share. That this Leeds-based group isn’t afraid to abuse its equipment helps, and in singer George Mitchell they have the perfect pitchman for a raw, disaffected fury. Get ready to hear the chorus of “Tough Luck” bellowed outside of pubs a lot this spring by belligerent, aspiring hooligans. — By Raymond Cummings

David Krakauer
Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust
7:30 p.m., $35
The virtuoso clarinetist explores his Jewish heritage and its cinematic reflections in The Big Picture, the title of both his new show (running here through February) and album. Krakauer adds a sly klezmer tinge to music from Sophie’s Choice, The Pianist, Cabaret, Radio Days, and Funny Girl with a cracking new sextet featuring Rob Schwimmer (keyboards), Sheryl Bailey (guitar), and Mark Helias (bass). — By Richard Gehr

Thursday, 1/30:

Jason Isbell
Jazz at Lincoln Center, Allen Room
8:30 p.m., $35
After shaking off the dust that marred his alcohol-fueled days as a guitarist for Athens sweethearts the Drive-By Truckers, Jason Isbell has settled into a solo career that crystalized on his fourth record Southeastern. At times uncanny in its precision, and at others, relatable in its humor, Isbell’s music has become a mirror for man who has failed and stuck around to tell the tale. Wryly sung sorrow never felt so enjoyable, expect tears and admiration for his fortitude. — By Caitlin White

Prefuse 73 + Nosaj Thing + Falty DL
10:00 p.m., $15/$20
The monumental empire Guillermo Scott Herren has established under the Prefuse 73 anchor is as staggering as the electronics knob-twiddlage, hip-hop beats fuckery, post-rock ‘n’ jazz-mongering, and glitchy weirdness that has marked his groundbreaking oeuvre since he burst onto the scene back in the late ’90s. Besides his glorious array of aliases (Savath and Savalas, Delarosa and Asora, Piano Overlord and Ahmad Szabo) and insane collaborations (Risil with Sunn O))) members, Diamond Watch Wrists with Death Grips/Hella maniac Zach Hill, and Sons of the Morning with producer extraordinaire Teebs), Herren is now documenting the instrumental beat music scene he’s purveyed with his own imprint, Yellow Year. Tonight, expect major beat thumping action and righteously spliced and diced textures as Herren showcases his label by performing as Prefuse 73 while Nosaj Thing and FaltyDL open. — By Brad Cohan

Friday, 1/31:

Maria Minerva + Lia Mice
The Mercury Lounge
7:30 p.m., $10
“We’re witnessing the end of Williamsburg right here, right now,” Maria Minerva told 285 Kent last month, at what was rumored to be the Brooklyn art space’s last show ever. So it’s oddly fitting that the 25-year-old Estonian electronic songwriter will play her very next show in Manhattan. Minerva, who lived in London before making New York her home last year, released her “Bless EP” in 2013 after several records with LA experimental label Not Not Fun and its dance-focused imprint 100% Silk; this month, she has a collaborative EP with Estonian producer Ajukaja out on Porridge Bullet/Pudru Kuul. On Friday, Minerva is joined by Lyons, France-based avant-pop songwriter Lia Mice. — By Liz Pelly

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