The Eight Best Concerts in New York This Week, 4/20/15


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

Tuesday, 4/21
Tim Berne’s Snakeoil
Jazz Standard
7:30 p.m., & 10 p.m., $25
Saxophonist Tim Berne has always loved guitar players, as demonstrated by past associations with cats like Bill Frisell, David Torn, and Nels Cline. And the addition of Ryan Ferreira to his potent quartet — which also includes Oscar Noriega (clarinets), Matt Mitchell (piano, electronics), and Ches Smith (drums) — turns out to have been a savvy choice indeed. Tonight the group marks the release of You’ve Been Watching Me, an album of confident writing, bracing interactions, and nearly continual surprises large and small. $25. 7:30 & 10 p.m. — Richard Gehr

Wadada Leo Smith – 44 Years: Retrospective
The Stone
Tuesday–Friday, 8 p.m., $20
Incandescent Mississippi-born trumpeter-composer Wadada Leo Smith celebrates over four decades of radical creativity with a week-long residency that’ll take shape in a dozen different group configurations and two lectures. On April 21, Smith first leads a trio with venue proprietor John Zorn (alto sax) and Smith’s longtime AACM associate George Lewis (trombone) and returns later with Bobby Naughton (vibraharp) and Dwight Andrews (reeds). The week’s other highlights include a tribute to Ornette Coleman on April 24 and the Saturday-night return of Smith’s solid Golden Quartet. — Richard Gehr

Slavic Soul Party!
Every Tuesday, 10 p.m., $10
Slavic Soul Party are Eastern Europe’s answer to the funk (and “Grunt”) of the J.B.’s or, more recently, the Budos Band. On their recordings, and every Tuesday at Barbès, the ten-person brass ensemble pins Gypsy melodies against the sort of jazzy r&b horn collages you hear in movies adapted from Elmore Leonard books. The best part, though, is how they interact with their audience at their concerts, sometimes breaking the fourth wall, and really making each word in their name — especially the last — pull its weight. — Kory Grow [

Wednesday, 4/22
Neel Murgai
Studio 487
8 p.m., $10
A string trio joins Brooklyn Raga Massive co-founders Neel Murgai (sitar) and Sameer Gupta (tabla) to perform Murgai’s “raga chamber-jazz” works building upon Indian classical music’s melodic and rhythmic roots. The results blend Indian music’s constant forward motion with the harmonic splendor of the Western classical tradition. Their set will be followed by ad hoc ragas and improvisations by whoever shows up at this consistently delightful weekly confab of some of the region’s most talented and inventive Indian musicians. — Richard Gehr

Thursday, 4/23
Ferry Corsten
11 p.m., $20–$40
After two Coachella performances as New World Punx with fellow trance-man Markus Schulz, Ferry Corsten is coming to NYC for a solo show. Corsten’s sound comes from the euphoric roots of trance, and while he still plays many faves from albums like WKND and L.E.F., his sound has grown tougher over time, and, as Corsten puts it, his productions are now in the vein of EDM. Club Corsten vs. Festival Corsten is very different indeed, so heavier buildups and harder drops are to be expected at this Thursday’s Lavo performance, which is 21+. — Eleanor Lambert

Dillon Francis
W Hotel
7 p.m., SOLD OUT
Do not be discouraged by the early hour of this performance; if anyone can handle a lame set time, it’s Dillon Francis. He has energy for days. From his Moombahton roots to the bricolage of musical undertones on his latest, Money Sucks, Friends Rule, Francis doesn’t just put on a show — he throws a party. His beats are vigorous, constantly reshaping and as excited to bounce as his fans are. If you’ve ever been to his Instagram account, you know what you’re in for: some ferociously dancey drops, an airplane hangar’s worth of energy, and maybe even a guest performance from our beloved DJ Hanzel. As part of 92.3 AMP Radio’s Emerging Artist series, Francis will be performing from 7 to 9 p.m. at the W Hotel Downtown. — Eleanor Lambert

Friday, 4/24
Don’t Think I’ve Forgotten: Cambodia’s Lost Rock and Roll
City Winery
7:30 p.m., & 10:30 p.m., $28–$38
Director John Pirozzi’s years-in-the-making doc Don’t Think I’ve Forgotten: Cambodia’s Lost Rock and Roll — playing at Film Forum in a week-long run — pays tribute to the rock ‘n’ roll movement that arose after the country gained independence from France in 1953. Long suppressed in the wake of the Khmer Rouge’s 1975 takeover, the history of this music is revived in Pirozzi’s movie through both present-day interviews and rarely seen archival footage. As a special bonus, City Winery commemorates the theatrical release with a pair of evening concerts showcasing some of the surviving musicians from the period.

Webster Hall
10 p.m., SOLD OUT
French funk-master Madeon has yet to turn 21, and yet he is already becoming a household name. After winning Pendulum‘s remix competition to “The Island” in 2010, Madeon was launched into the EDM stratosphere, with Las Vegas residencies (which he’s too young to attend, mind you) and festival performances worldwide. Between his 39-track mash-up hit “Pop Culture,” his 2012 EP The City, and the brand-new Adventure album, it’s clear that the young producer has a knack for uplifting melodies, abounding synths, and weaving, pulsing drops. Start your weekend out right with some groovy beats and a charming Frenchman at Webster Hall alongside the M Machine. 19+. — Eleanor Lambert