Music

Waxahatchee’s Planned Parenthood Benefit Tops the Best NYC Shows This Weekend

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This weekend’s roundup comes with a big disclaimer: safety first, everyone. While last year’s warnings about a blizzard around this time didn’t pan out, it might not happen again, so stay tuned to the weather report and make good choices. Remember: there will be more shows, so it’s not worth risking injury to see one mid-blizzard on Saturday. That being said? We’ve got a gem of a weekend on the docket. In addition to Waxahatchee’s strum-for-a-cause, Market Hotel is finally throwing open its doors — for keeps this time — with a two-night party to celebrate its legal status, calling upon all their favorite local acts to join in. It’s heartening to see promoters and musicians joining forces to resist the march of money farther into Brooklyn, and with lease secured, hopefully Market Hotel can continue onward as an institution for years to come.  

1/22

Sonya Kitchell

Mercury Lounge

7:30 p.m., $12

To mark the arrival of her new album, We Come Apart, singer-songwriter Sonya Kitchell plays this record release show at Mercury Lounge. The new effort is Kitchell’s first since 2008, when the then-seventeen-year-old released her acclaimed This Storm. That album was the follow-up to Kitchell’s full-length debut, Words Came Back to Me, which was among the first CDs to be sold in Starbucks coffee shops. Kitchell’s assured, mature vocals on her early releases took influence from the greats like Joni Mitchell and Carole King as well as the singer’s own background as a jazz artist (she toured with Herbie Hancock). We Come Apart marks a stage of reinvention for the singer, who in 2008 relocated from Massachusetts to New York. —Jill Menze

Waxahatchee

Silent Barn

8 p.m., $12

When tickets became available for this solo Waxahatchee set – with Trophy Wife and Vagabon in tow – the hosting website crashed almost immediately. What could cause such frenzy? Was it Waxahatchee, whose 2015 album Ivy Tripp solidified her as one of indie rock’s most melodic and concise songwriters and made her far too popular to play this DIY space? Or was it the show itself, scheduled to coincide with the 43rd anniversary of Roe v. Wade as a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood? Since this is Bushwick, the answer is: Probably both. Although pre-sale tickets are sold out, a limited number will be available at the door. —Silas Valentino 

Murder City Devils

Webster Hall

7 pm, $25

Seattle punk legends Murder City Devils have been gigging on and off since reuniting in 2006, and the band’s latest stint on the road brings them to Webster Hall on January 22. When they formed two decades ago, Murder City Devils brought a pummeling garage/punk presence to the Northwest scene, crafting spitting in-your-face rock across three LPs.. The band played its final show at Seattle’s Shadowbox Theater on Halloween in 2001, which was commemorated on the live recording R.I.P. Though band members kept busy with various side projects over the years, 2014 finally saw new music on the group’s The White Ghost Has Blood on Its Hands Again, and fans are glad to have them back. Deep Creep opens the show. —Jill Menze

1/23

Those Darlins

Baby’s All Right

8 p.m., $15

Nashville’s Those Darlins are the rare act that inspires an all-or-nothin’ allegiance. Their twangy, toothy sneer somehow manages to channel Wanda Jackson and Sleater-Kinney without biting too much like either act, a combination that made them stars in their hometown country-heavy scene. They are ferocious onstage: A rock ‘n’ roll tornado, the debris left in their wake decorated by sequined hot pants, swear words and the saucy sheen of a cherry-red Gibson. Since 2009, the band has gone on to release three records, play on through a couple of line-up changes, and criss-cross thousands of miles of American highway in their van. And now, they’re calling it quits: this tour is their last, and this show their final appearance in New York. It’s a breakup to prevent a creative blowup, but on the Baby’s stage, they’ll go out with a bang. —Hilary Hughes

Robert Earl Keen

Irving Plaza

8:30 pm, $30

Texas troubadour Robert Earl Keen has led a fruitful career as one of the area’s top Americana country artists. With a catalog stretching back to 1984, Keen was among the trailblazers of the past three decades, with his work in country and folk leading to an induction into the Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012. Cut to 2015, and Keen is still charting: last year his bluegrass-covers collection Happy Prisoner: The Bluegrass Sessions reached No. 2 on Billboard’s bluegrass chart. The album was a slight detraction for Keen, in that it stays primarily within the bluegrass genre and contains no original material, but still hones close to his down-home roots. For the set he enlisted the likes of Lyle Lovett and Natalie Maines for duets, as well as his longtime producer Lloyd Maines. In support of Happy Prisoner, Keen is taking his act on the road, and his showmanship will fill up Irving Plaza’s stage. —Jill Menze

A Place to Bury Strangers

Market Hotel

8 p.m., $10

After a five-year journey to go from DIY to above-the-board, Bushwick’s Market Hotel finally reopens this weekend, hopefully for good. They’re welcoming audiences back with a two-show reopening party, and although Friday night’s electronic lineup is killer, Saturday’s “straight up rock show of excellent pedigree” (in the words of Market Hotel owner Todd P) is all warm fuzzies and celebration. Headliner A Place to Bury Strangers used to live at the now-closed Death by Audio, so the reopening of another long-lost DIY heaven is of special importance to them. Guerrilla Toss, who have picked up the mantle of indie rock hometown heroes, support, and DJ tunes come courtesy of Bossa Nova Civic Club owner John Barclay. Tickets are at the door only, so please don’t freeze in the snow waiting on line. —Zoë Leverant

1/24

Ole Mathisen

ShapeShifter Lab

7 p.m., $12

Saxophonist Ole Mathisen‘s Outlier Ensemble’s 7 Seconds to Sundown is at once environmental call to arms, challenge to the standard distribution model (it’s available on thumb drive only, no streaming or label releases), and hybrid experiment in improvisation; somewhere between Henry Threadgill’s brand of free jazz and Olivier Messiaen’s boldest chamber classical. With Julian Pollack doubling on keyboards and synth bass and veteran drummer Marko Djordjevic, Mathisen’s metrically complex but immediately accessible grooves, originally composed for a classical setting, become a jumping-off point for three of the most exciting improvisers working today. Also on the double bill is the equally dizzying and irrepressibly genre-defying Take Off Collective, featuring Mathisen, Djordjevic and bassist Matthew Garrison. —Aidan Levy

Taylor McFerrin
MoMA P.S. 1

4 p.m., $15

Every winter, we’re reminded to thank PS1’s Sunday Sessions for giving us a reason to get out of the house. Polymath producer Taylor McFerrin does all his own stunts: the near-dozen instruments that make his albums, the samples that comprise his live sets, and the beatboxing that anchors his beats. He draws equally on classic soul, old-school NYC hip-hop, free jazz, and electronic experimentation, wandering through genres and finding common ground to tie them all together. And no, it’s not exactly a coincidence: as Bobby McFerrin’s son, he grew up under the watchful one of the modern era’s most lauded vocalists. But like many descendants of famous experimenters (see also: Tyondai Braxton), Taylor makes music his father never could, and his live performances are more akin to a set in a smoky underground club than a concert in a grand hall. —Zoë Leverant