TIDAL Makes Good with an All-Star Benefit in this Week’s Best NYC Concerts


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

Whether it’s a marketing ploy to further up the cache of Jay Z’s controversial streaming service TIDAL or simply the do-good benefit it’s being presented as, Tuesday night’s Barclays Center blowout promises to entertain fans — and not just those who can make it out to the home of the Brooklyn Nets. Subscribers to TIDAL also get to stream the show, part of the promised “exclusive content” package included in the service that some of its detractors have been underwhelmed by, no doubt. No matter where you find yourself in the debate surrounding TIDAL, their curated line-up (of TIDAL endorsed all-stars) is a doozy, from Prince to Beyoncé to Nicki Minaj to Lil Wayne to Usher, as well as Sean Carter himself. With over twenty acts forming original collaborations, it’s at the very least the kind of advertising that’s easy to swallow: show-stopping performances with an altruistic purpose.

Elsewhere in Brooklyn, there’s a birthday celebration going down at Baby’s All Right as the hip venue hits its two-year mark, hosting Empress Of, Moses Sumney, and secret special guests who are likely to be huge names in indie circles (but probably won’t be Beyoncé).

Monday 10/19


Knitting Factory

8:00 p.m., $20

Though he made a name for himself as a producer helming remixes for Penguin Prison, St. Lucia, and Charli XCX, Josh Legg, otherwise known as Goldroom, recently said that he wants to explore the idea of a less electronic future for his project, particularly in a live setting. That’s the concept behind his latest single “Ready To Ignite,” which he penned with Tinashe. Like earlier collaborations with Chela (breakout single “Fifteen”) or George Maple (“Embrace”), “Ignite” is an infectious dance track, carefree and evocative of the sunny beaches and neon-lit nights of Los Angeles, where the Boston-born electronic musician makes his home. The track was released last week to promote his sixteen-date tour across North America with Gavin Turek, and the pair roll through NYC with a stop at Knitting Factory Monday night. – Lindsey Rhoades


Bowery Ballroom

8:00 p.m., $20

On the strength of his debut single “10,000 Emerald Pools,” Michigan-raised Garrett Borns, who performs under his stylized surname BØRNS, rocketed to notoriety. From that song sprang 2014 EP Candy, and it reappears (along with EP tracks “Past Lives” and “Electric Love”) on his debut full-length, Dopamine, out last Friday via Interscope. Though much of the record was written in a Los Angeles tree-house, the entire thing sounds like it sprung up in a dance club right under a disco ball, a collection of glam-rock infused indie pop bangers meant to exude the very chemical for which it is named. An anthemic catalogue of hedonistic pursuits, BØRNS brings the party to Bowery Ballroom for a sold-out show with Avid Dancer. – Lindsey Rhoades

Tuesday 10/20

Leon Bridges

Apollo Theater

8:30 p.m., $30

Hailing from Fort Worth, Texas 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, came out on June 23, and Bridges spent his summer making festival crowds dance ‘til their feet were sore across the country. He’ll return to New York to play the historic Apollo Theater, and while the show has long since sold out, catching this soulful talent on this hallowed stage is well-worth scouring the secondary market for tickets. – Silas Valentino

Tidal X

Barclays Center

8 p.m., $39.50-$250

Say what you will about TIDAL – at least they know how to put on a show for a good cause. Jay Z’s much criticized, sometimes forgotten hi-fi streaming service and the supposed antidote to the music industry’s pay scale woes hosts a benefit at Barclays Center on Tuesday that aims to raise “awareness, funds, conscious engagement, and dynamic action for transformative and positive social impact worldwide.” It’s the first in a series of curated by TIDAL, and 100% of proceeds to community-based non-profits via New World Foundation. Additionally, TIDAL’s subscribers (which recently hit the one million mark) will be able to live-stream the concert and can make donations throughout the performance tele-thon style. The lineup for this thing is no joke: naturally, both Ms. And Mr. Beyoncé will be there, as will Usher, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Meek Mill, Nick Jonas, Damien Marley, and a host of rising acts, with special collaborative performances of songs that fit the evening’s philanthropic motif. – Lindsey Rhoades

Baby’s Turns Two (featuring Empress Of, Moses Sumney, and Special Guests)

Baby’s All Right

6 p.m., $25

It seems like only yesterday that Baby’s All Right opened its doors on Broadway and welcomed the music-loving masses of NYC into its eccentrically-decorated interior, but it’s been a whole 24 months. To celebrate the already-beloved music venue’s second birthday, Brooklyn’s reigning queen of electro-pop, Empress Of, will play the driving, lush electronic jams from her first proper LP, Me, released earlier this year via Terrible Records. Moses Sumney, who put out a very underrated EP of intimate, heartbreaking tracks in a similar vein, opens the show, but the kicker here is the “Special Guests” listed at the top of the bill. While Baby’s is known to break buzz-worthy acts before anyone else has heard of them, they’ve also hosted blowout shows with big names like Beach House, Ariel Pink, and Mac DeMarco in a space much more intimate than these artists would normally play, so there’s absolutely no telling who might show up for the birthday bash. Now that Baby’s is officially toddler-age they’ll be sure to pull out all the stops. – Lindsey Rhoades

Wednesday 10/21

Tove Lo

Terminal 5

7:00 p.m., $30

Beginning as a songwriter for Icona Pop and Girls Aloud, Tove Lo has put her writing chops to good use to become a musical wonder in her own right. In just the three years since the 2012 drop of “Love Ballad,” Tove Lo has carved out her own corner of electro-pop with her powerful, sultry, and sweeping voice. The “Habits” singer has been featured on many EDM tracks with artists like Seven Lions and the globally recognized Alesso. This Terminal 5 gig is her biggest headlining set in NYC to date, and Erik Hassle will be opening the show. The concert is sold out, but tickets can be found on the secondary market. – Eleanor Lambert

Majical Cloudz

National Sawdust

8:00 p.m., $15

Having released Are You Alone?, the follow-up to 2013’s groundbreaking LP Impersonator, this past Friday, Montreal duo Majical Cloudz celebrate with a showcase of their newest record at National Sawdust. Pairing minimal electronics with maximalist feels, frontman Devon Welsh is a songwriter like no other, able to communicate a startling intimacy in even the rowdiest venues. But with National Sawdust’s pristine acoustics and reverent crowds, this performance is guaranteed to be emotionally exhilarating. It’s already sold out, so check secondary markets to score tickets, or catch them when they’re back in town next January for a stop at the Music Hall of Williamsburg. – Lindsey Rhoades

Thursday 10/22

The Ex and Ken Vandermark

The Bell House

9:00 p.m., $15-$18

Since their three-chord 1979 origins, Danish punk-jazz quartet The Ex have steadily expanded their musical horizons into free jazz, Ethio-jazz, and other avant sectors. Tonight they team up with a semi-regular collaborator, Chicago-based MacArthur Fellow Ken Vandermark, for another unpredictable tussle. Vandermark – a tenor and baritone guy right at home in the outer limits – usually ends up supplying a satisfyingly flexible foundation for the Ex’s frantic, spastic, and playful double-guitar energy. Also playing: DJ Rupture and SAVAK. – Richard Gehr

Cannibal Ox

The Studio at Webster Hall

7:30 p.m., $15

After the release of their 2001 debut The Cold Vein, Harlem hip-hop duo Cannibal Ox seemed destined for greatness. Vast Aire and Vordul Mega traded flows that were humorous but with a bite, and the El-P-produced album quickly became an underground classic. The Aughts went on and a follow-up record never appeared, but this year they rattled the scene yet again with the release of Blade of Ronin on March 3, reminding listeners why they’re the rulers of the underground even after fourteen years in the shadows. – Tara Mahadevan


Baby’s All Right

8:30 p.m. $12-$14

The fluttering harmonies over glitchy, jazz-inflected beats on Braids’ second album, Deep In The Iris, sound like glittery, carefree pop gems. But behind the florid mask, singer Raphaelle Standall-Preston gets deep, tackling loaded topics like domestic abuse, sexual objectification, and the evils of Internet porn. Her breathy whisper has the effect of a sledgehammer, nestling these weighty topics in a wash of flaring synths, imbued with a sense of explosive intimacy. Standall-Preston never dances around the issues her lyrics examine, but the compositions they’re couched in ensure that her messages sink in, even on the dance floor. – Lindsey Rhoades

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 19, 2015

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