The Nine Best Concerts in New York This Week, 6/22/15


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

Monday, 6/22
Miami Horror
Rough Trade NYC
8 p.m., $15
The band is called Miami Horror, the first song on their new album, All Possible Futures, is called “American Dream,” and they’re semi-based in Los Angeles. Despite the U.S.A.-savvy modifiers, this rave pop outfit is Australian and flits between California and Melbourne looking for inspiration, possibly on the beach. All Possible Futures bounces along on breezy dance cuts rooted in Ibizan Eighties nightlife, filtered through massive amounts of sunshine. They play the same gig on Tuesday June 23 and both shows are sold out, but you may find tickets on the secondary market. – Linda Laban

Reel Big Fish
Best Buy Theater
7:30 p.m., $22 – $25
Last December was bittersweet for Reel Big Fish. The ska-punk band gave fans something to celebrate with the surprise Happy Skalidays EP, six tracks of Christmas covers and crudely named originals. On the other hand, the final month of 2014 brought about the departure of drummer Ryland “The Rabbit” Steen, who cited touring schedule troubles. Not too surprising, considering the underground faves are not so much hiding below the surface as they are gophering cross-country, on the road consistently since 2007’s Monkeys for Nothin’ and the Chimps for Free. How do they rock so hard? – Ashley Steves

Blue Note Jazz Festival
Blue Note
8 p.m., $20 – $55
Some jazz fests bet the farm on stylistic focus; some let a wide breadth carry the day. File this year’s Blue Note Jazz Festival in the latter category and get ready for action. If you participate fully, you’ll be bouncing around town (and genres). How else to describe a month-long confab that includes Bebel Gilberto and Kathleen Battle as well as Oliver Lake and the Rippingtons? Mainstream swing, old-school blues, swamp rock, classical refractions, and the city’s first all-women mariachi outfit — the BNJF curators aren’t sweating the orthodoxy, and that alone is rather refreshing. Icons are invited, of course; saxophonist Lee Konitz, drummer Roy Haynes, and pianist Abdullah Ibrahim still have the power to amaze. You’ll need to sketch your own must-see list, but be wise: That Bad Plus–Joshua Redman gig has to make the cut. – Jim Macnie

Tuesday, 6/23
No Joy
Baby’s All Right
8 p.m., $12
Since February No Joy have been on and off the road in support of their third release, More Faithful, which hit shelves on June 9 via Mexican Summer Records. This new album has the Canadian foursome sounding their most focused, an adjective not often used when describing the hazy drone of shoegaze. “I think that we wanted to do our best to have a contrast so not everything was loud or quiet but a good mix of them,” explains vocalist/guitarist Jasamine White-Gluz. This pertains to the way the album is heard – how certain tracks such as “Remember Nothing” and “Corpo Daemon” blast wide open with noise and fuzz while other songs are glossily subdued – and in how the album itself was recorded, between the secluded forest of Costa Rica and the concrete metropolis of New York City. – Silas Valentino

Kacey Musgraves
Rough Trade NYC
6:30 p.m., FREE with Album Purchase
The millions that Nashville pockets off reassurance make Kacey Musgraves’s Same Trailer Different Park somewhat miraculous, a major-label debut whose lead single’s depiction of small-town life is closer to Chekhov than Eric Church. “Merry Go Round” is a diagnosis set to the delicate pluck of a minimalist string band: Everyone in the narrator’s life suffers from some addiction or another, their drugs and cheating and churchgoing all rote, time-killing distractions rather than the rah-rah hobbies enjoyed by the boys ’round Blake Shelton’s way. Now she’s back with Pageant Material, and the world listens far beyond Nashville for the next step Musgraves will take as she continues to follow her own arrow – Alan Scherstuhl

Wednesday, 6/24
Leon Bridges
Music Hall of Williamsburg
8 p.m., $20
Hailing from Fort Worth, TX is the velvet-voiced Leon Bridges. It doesn’t take long for the Sam Cooke comparisons to begin, both in the way he crafts charming love songs and in his composure, but this isn’t some daft echo of the past. Bridges may have his roots in soul, but tunes like “Coming Home” and “Lisa Sawyer” are updated in a way that’s entirely his own. His debut album Coming Home is released this week on June 23 and he’s celebrating with back-to-back sold-out shows (the other is on Tuesday night at the Bowery Ballroom). Now would be the time to splurge in order to snag a ticket from a secondary market. – Silas Valentino

Thursday, 6/25
10 p.m., $15 – $25
The mad-scientist production style of RJD2 has been consistently intriguing: from his debut, the sample-based Deadringer, back in 2002; through the live instrumentation of 2007’s The Third Hand, all the way to the multiple collaborations of his fifth album, More Is Than Isn’t, released in 2013. He is probably still most recognized, however, for contributing the theme tune to Mad Men. A native of Eugene, OR and currently based in Philly, RJD2 cuts and pastes from the best of his deep catalogue into his show. – Karen Gardiner

Music Hall of Williamsburg
8 p.m., $20
Brooklyn’s Rubblebucket craft idiosyncratic indie pop worthy of the genre. The group, founded by Alex Toth and Kalmia Traver, a couple who met while studying music at the University of Vermont, incorporates a diverse range of sounds into its danceable tunes, from horn-highlighted numbers to the occasional dip into ska. (In a good way!) Rubblebucket’s most recent offering, 2014’s Survival Sounds, was its first for Communion Records, the label of Mumford and Sons member Ben Lovett. – Jill Menze

Friday, 6/26
Diet Cig
Cake Shop
8 p.m., $10 -$12
As of now there are only eleven minutes of released music from Diet Cig, a pop-rock duo based out of New Paltz, New York, just up Interstate 87. But in the five short, delightful songs found on their debut EP, Over Easy, it’s fairly evident there’s something worthy coming from this drummer-meets-guitarist combo. Singer Alex Luciano is relatable and endearing when she sings, “You still watch The Simpsons on my floor/Pretend like it’s 1994,” as heard in “Breathless,” but spits venom in “Scene Sick” at every annoying musician or socialite who’s ever bragged or boasted while holding a cheap cocktail. – Silas Valentino

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