The 10 Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 5/9/14


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

Friday, 5/9:

Cher + Cyndi Lauper
Barclays Center
8:00 p.m., $30.50-$161
Cher is a superstar of music, television, film, and Twitter. She’s mastered all genres and mediums she’s explored and made herself one of our culture’s most interesting stars. Last year, the 67-year-old legend released her 25th album, Closer to the Truth, which turned out to be her highest-charting solo effort. For her latest post-“farewell” tour, she’s joined by another icon, Cyndi Lauper, for an evening with the singular mission of making sure the audience is having as much fun as they are. — By Brittany Spanos

Frankie Cosmos + Alice Cohen
The Brooklyn Rod & Gun Club
8:00 p.m., free
A dazzling bill featuring an orgy of DIY punk is presented here in a singular evening showcasing the raddest of music and television. There’s de facto King of Public Access TV, BJ Rubin, premiering his latest ‘n’ greatest brain-twisting, music/comedy freak show, starring noise luminaries Black Dice and Blues Control but highlighted by ascending songstress Frankie Cosmos. Tonight, Rubin and the teenaged Frankie celebrate the CD release of the heavenly Zentropy, her lo-fi treasure of a record that marries Beat Happening’s playful strum with candy-sweet melodies while charming introspections of dogs, art school and love are sung in the most saccharine of voices. Rounding out the bill is rainbow-streaked pych-pop tunesmith Alice Cohen, yet another delicious Rubin staple. Wowza. — By Brad Cohan

Terminal 5
8:00 p.m., $27.50/$30
These Scottish rockers have been at the forefront of instrumental rock for almost two decades, and somehow their most recent album Rave Tapes sounds like the refined result of all that experience, sludgy distortions notwithstanding. The delicate spiderwebs of guitar and piano are now propelled less by meaty power chords and rumbling floor toms, but rather simply by the fact that as soon as they disappear, you always wish they hadn’t. — By Vijith Assar

Mavis Staples
Music Hall of Williamsburg
8:00 p.m., $35/$40
Husky-voiced gospel powerhouse Mavis Staples started out sharing stages with the Dixie Hummingbirds and Soul Stirrers as a member of the Staples Singers until pater familias “Pops” Staples realized that ’60s rock packed as much spiritual substance as the Christian stuff – and was a lot more lucrative, to boot. Mavis’s two most recent Jeff Tweedy-produced albums continue to deliver the transcendent goods. — By Richard Gehr

Bowery Ballroom
9:00 p.m., $15/$17
In a recent interview, SOHN described himself as a “positive nihilist” which is simultaneously an oxymoron, and the perfect description of his music. Christopher Taylor began doling out one off tracks as SOHN in 2012, culminating in an EP called The Wheel. Now, he’s jammed his uplifting breakdowns and airy, tightly-packed electronic R&B into full-length album called Tremors. The Vienna-based producer and vocalist fits somewhere between James Blake and Autre Ne Veut, so expect pillowy synths and helium vocals strewn with lyrics that confront existential crises. — By Caitlin White

Saturday, 5/10:

Fleetmac Wood
Black Bear Bar
9:00 p.m., $8
Before you make any assumptions about anything named Fleetmac Wood, let’s get one thing straight: no covers. This London-based DJ collective and party series traffics exclusively in originals and remixes, re-edits, and re-imaginations of the White Winged Californians’ greatest hits and dusty back-catalog gems. After debuting last month in Los Angeles, FMW brings its dreamy dancefloor vibes to Brooklyn this month. Costumes and geeking out (“If you’re not sure you like Fleetwood Mac, don’t come. No really, don’t,” reads the press release) encouraged. — By Harley Oliver Brown

Robert Henke + The Haxan Cloak
Brooklyn Masonic Temple
8:00 p.m., $15
For his new Lumiére live show, the co-developer of Ableton Live and all-around sonic innovator Robert Henke deploys lasers hot enough to light a cigarette to project hyperactive geometric patterns in conjunction with the kind of threatening polyrhythmic electronic music with which he made his name as Monolake. Not excited yet? This unique presentation by Red Bull Music Academy at the Brooklyn Masonic Temple will also feature the U.S. live debut of dark experimentalist the Haxan Cloak. — By Aaron Gonsher

Knitting Factory Brooklyn
11:30 p.m., $12/$14
ODESZA is part of a group of Seattle bands leading a small, pretty-sounding revolution against the EDM bangers that have dominated the dance music scene for the past few years. The duo’s glitchy electro-pop goes down like candy for breakfast, the type of music you can move to all night long and still come down to in the morning. ODESZA’s irresistibly groove-inducing reputation has been selling out shows across the country, so be sure to catch them when they bring their gorgeous sound and light show to a pair of concerts in NYC. — By Harley Oliver Brown

Sunday, 5/11:

Terminal 5
Saturday & Sunday, 8:00 p.m., $25
Anyone who came of age in the 90s is tempted to view HAIM with skepticism. I mean, the whole three-sisters-playing-pop-music-together-on-real-instruments-with-flowing-hair shtick instantly pegs them as a sort of updated, more cosmopolitan version of Hanson, reviving memories of insufferable rockist teeny boppers and the “MMMBop” noises they made. Fortunately, a listen to Days Are Gone–with its smart, unpretentious mix of 70’s L.A. folk-rock, 80’s MOR influences, mid-to-late-90’s Robert “Mutt” Lange-era Shania Twain, and a little late-90s R&B thrown in for good measure–dispels all fear about a Middle of Nowhere redux. — By Winston Groman

Of Montreal
Le Poisson Rouge
9:00 p.m., $25
Of Montreal’s vibey, spirited energy offers a type of rock that plays with electric guitars and tambourines in familiar yet refreshing ways. Hailing from Athens, Georgia, their sound has evolved over the years but still has an unmistakable element, one that is reminiscent simultaneously of vaudeville and the 1970s. The band is a part of the eccentric Elephant 6 Collective — which also claims acts like Circulatory System and Neutral Milk Hotel — and will certainly send the crowd whirling with their animated, nostalgic riffs and loud, amped-up vocals. — By Eleanor Lambert

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