The 6 Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 7/18/14


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

Friday, 7/18:

Terminal 5
8:00 p.m., $25/$30
Flume’s brand of house pop is stutter-speed retro – funked fireworks staggered into a head-rung swagger. Vocal samples – all at once familiar, alien, and impossibly close – moonwalk through cuts on this Australian’s self-titled 2013 debut as though each song is a themed space at a massive rave. While Flume‘s acid-dance grooves recall the salad days of Big Beat bounce, this new pollution is decidedly more user-friendly, hemorrhaging hooks and never quite shifting into face-melting warp drive. This could get really popular, or maybe it already is: his trio of shows are sold out. — By Raymond Cummings

Matthew Sweet
City Winery
8:00 p.m., $45-$55
This ’90s alt-rock demigod was one of the first navel-gazing singer-songwriters to come up with more than amplified lint, enlisting iconoclastic guitarists Robert Quine and Richard Lloyd to channel the bone-dry cynicism of breakout album Girlfriend, galvanizing a generation looking for a viable alternative to whatever else was out there. In preparation for his first album of original material in four years, Sweet and his regular touring band will perform choice tracks from his extensive catalogue, up through 2011 release Modern Art. For die-hard Sweet fans, the forthcoming project’s as-yet-unfunded Kickstarter offers a $10,000 live house concert and a limited edition bronze casted cat sculpture. With Tommy Keene. — By Aidan Levy

OOIOO + Lichens + Ryan Sawyer
Rough Trade NYC
9:00 p.m., $18
It was probably inevitable that some bright experimentalist would appropriate the rich and colorful-sounding metallophones and gongs of Indonesia to gnarlier ends. Which is precisely the case with OOIOO’s brilliant new Gamel, a kaleidoscopic blend of Javanese gamelan, brain-searing acid-rock guitar, and Japanese girl pop. Led by Boredoms co-founder (and Flaming Lips muse) Yoshimi P-We, OOIOO oscillates between slow, stately rhythms and ringing climaxes in a series of transcendent permutations. Their music is modular and cyclical, surprising yet repititious in the best possible way. American minimalism’s roots may lie in gamelan, but Yoshimi’s maximalist take suggests an altogether more euphoric variation. OOIOO is bringing two gamelan players along on this rare American tour which continues with a Sunday-night appearance at Le Poisson Rouge. — By Richard Gehr
Saturday, 7/19:

JBL Live at Pier 97
6:00 p.m., $53
Stereolithic, 311’s first indie release since 1991 and a reunion with Soundsystem producer Scott Ralston, marks a return to the airy midwestern reggae-rap-alt-rock casserole and insouciant swagger that characterized the sangfroid of ’90s dot-com bubble backbeats. The album retains the rosy retrospection of diffuse power chords and frontman Nick Hexum’s diaphanous tone, but explores headier themes: climate change, wretched excess, and scattershot existential rambling. Yet when Hexum sings, still as refreshing as an ice-cold Zima, “I’m like the ocean, too calm to get upset by somebody’s notion,” we remember that we don’t really care if still waters run deep. — By Aidan Levy

Union Pool
2:00 p.m., free
Union Pool’s stellar Summer Thunder series continues with Brooklyn’s own grizzled chuggers Obits invading the backyard. Led by raspy-throated wailer Rick Froberg, a dude who has amassed enough to die for punk cred and indie punk godheadness to make your head explode. In the 90’s, Froberg tore both math-rock and post-hardcore a new a-hole on the left coast with Drive Like Jehu and Hot Snakes. Since 2008, he’s led Obits through a killer LP trifecta of 60’s-damaged blooze and mangled surf-punk junk-fi anthemry. So soak in the sun, drink a beer and “taste the diff” while grooving to cuts from Obits’ most recent rad riffer, Bed & Bugs. — By Brad Cohan

‘Argot Showcase’ w/ Gunnar Haslam + Octo Octa + Steve Mizek
Cameo Gallery
11:59 p.m., $5/$10
Argot is a Chicago-based record label run by Steve Mizek, founder and editor of the popular electronic music blog Little White Earbuds. Their output is eclectic, ranging from the piano-driven pop earworms of Chase Smith’s Stay 12″ to Gunnar Haslam’s widescreen techno. Catch Haslam DJ while label-mate and fellow Brooklyn boy Octo Octa plays live, with Mizek himself taking a turn on the decks. — By Aaron Gonsher

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