The Best NYC Shows This Week: Sammus, Lorde, Brooklyn Folk Festival


Two very different festivals will take place over the weekend in Brooklyn. Ende Tymes, at Silent Barn, features some of the strangest, most challenging noise and experimental music out there, while the Brooklyn Folk Festival brings bluegrass, Americana, and more to St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church in Brooklyn Heights. If you only have room for one show, Lorde’s headlining gig on Wednesday with Run the Jewels and Mitski is probably the highest-quality set you can find in the shortest amount of time.

Lorde, Run the Jewels, Mitski
Barclays Center
7 p.m., $77+

Lorde’s most recent album, Melodrama, cemented her place as an international pop star with critical-darling credentials. The record finds the Kiwi singer upping her game from her debut, with bold, emotionally direct songwriting and transcendent hooks on songs like breakout single “Green Light.” This show should be excellent from top to bottom, with the indie rock powerhouse Mitski and hip-hop team Run the Jewels opening.

Swearin’, Weed Hounds, Big Eyes, Dark Thoughts
Market Hotel
9 p.m., $13

Swearin’, a DIY indie rock band led by Allison Crutchfield, hasn’t released anything since 2013, and announced they were breaking up in 2015. But at the end of last year, Crutchfield revealed that the group would get back together to play shows with Superchunk in 2018. Crutchfield has also been busy recently with her solo work; her album Tourist in This Town is lightened up with fuller indie pop instrumentation and production, including electronic elements. But her writing remains as sharp and emotional as ever. We can’t wait to see what Swearin’ will do now that the crew has reunited.

Sammus, Dog, Old Maybe, Joanna Sternberg
Hart Bar
9:30 p.m., $10

The upstate New York rapper Sammus combines nerdcore with hyper-literate rap in a way that brings to mind Das Racist if they had a video game addiction. A unique and provocative artist who deserves more attention, Sammus addresses an impressive range of topics in her music, from internet harassment on the excellent “Comments Disabled” to sexual violence on the startlingly blunt “Song About Sex.”

Screaming Females, Thou, +HIRS+
Market Hotel
8 p.m., $16

Screaming Females, a punk band from New Brunswick, New Jersey, couldn’t exist without the exceptional guitar playing of band leader Marissa Paternoster. The group has so far released seven albums that send its raw energy spiraling in different directions, but throughout it all, Paternoster just shreds. That’s enough of a reason to see Screaming Females live, where they always deliver. Their captivating new album, All at One, sees their sound evolving toward pop punk, with help from guest-contributor Brendan Canty, of Fugazi, on drums.

Ought, Mal Devisa, Katie Von Schleicher
Music Hall of Williamsburg
9 p.m., $16–$18

The Montreal band Ought are known for their angular post-punk songs that climax frantically as lead singer Tim Darcy spits out poetically oblique lyrics. On their new Room Inside the World they change tack, with more sedate tunes strongly reminiscent of Eighties bands like Gang of Four. Darcy’s lyrics continue to stand out, though: On “Desire,” he sings about a lost love who was like “the moon in a basket of weeds,” with a passion that evokes Bruce Springsteen. Get to Ought’s Music Hall of Williamsburg show early to see Mal Devisa, a hyper-talented musician with an incredibly versatile voice and repertoire.

Ende Tymes 9: Festival of Noise and Experimentation
ENDE, Latrines, Negation, Slow Owls, SOOT, Jeremy Toussaint-Baptiste, Buffalo MRI, Fritz Welch, Lars Akerlund, Eva Aguila, LoVid + Produce Consume Robot, Guillermo Pizarro, Hoor-paar-Kraat, Eames & Cory, Compactor, Calambre, more
Silent Barn
7:30 p.m., $15 per night, $40 weekend pass 

The ninth edition of the Ende Tymes noise and experimental music festival will come to Silent Barn this weekend for three nights of strange, abrasive, difficult artists. For noise aficionados, there’s nothing better than a gathering like this, and, with Silent Barn preparing to shut down, it’s a good time to appreciate a space that provides a platform for artists on the fringes. Plus, the group possessing one of our all-time favorite band names, the New York Review of Cocksucking — an experimental saxophone project — is scheduled to play on Sunday. Who could say no to that? Also 4/7 and 4/8

10th Annual Brooklyn Folk Festival
Spirit Family Reunion, R. Crumb, East River String Band With R. Crumb, Elizabeth Mitchell, Suni Paz, Innov Gnawa, Women’s Raga Massive, more
St. Ann & the Holy Trinity
7:30 p.m., $25–$85

The Brooklyn Folk Festival returns this year to St. Ann & the Holy Trinity, a beautiful cathedral that’s an appropriate setting for this largely acoustic lineup. Much of the fare on offer is traditional bluegrass, jug bands, and other American folk varieties. All these acts are supremely talented, and fans of folk shouldn’t miss out. Also 4/7 and 4/8

Discwoman Night
Tama Sumo, Ciel, Barbie Bertisch, Ariel Zetina, DJ Haram, Bearcat, stud1nt
10 p.m., $15–$25

Brooklyn’s best techno collective takes over Elsewhere on Friday for a night of sets from a diverse roster of DJs. Tama Sumo, a resident at Berlin’s legendary club Berghain, plays techno that incorporates Afrobeat and disco, while the Toronto-based Ciel plays emotional electro that veers into the realm of progressive house. Discwoman regulars DJ Haram, Bearcat, and stud1nt will back up these touring acts. Wear your dancing shoes.

Cigarettes After Sex
Brooklyn Steel
9 p.m., $25–$30

Just when you thought you couldn’t hear a song by the xx one more time without screaming, Cigarettes After Sex have swooped in to fill that sultry downtempo void. The project headed by Greg Gonzalez released a self-titled album last year that’s filled with melancholy — a dreamy, 21st-century collection of love songs about distance and disenchantment. As in the xx’s music, mood is paramount here, and it stays steady and seductive throughout the LP. Groove to it at Brooklyn Steel this weekend.

Yaeji & Friends
Yaeji, No Intimate, Jennifer Vanilla, Novelty Daughter, Abbi Press, Sleep 300, Enayet, Malory, False Witness, more
10 p.m., $12–$20

The producer and DJ Yaeji came out of nowhere last year to become one of the most beloved new acts in the electronic scene. Yaeji blends techno and electropop into endearing bangers like “Raingurl” that beg to be played on repeat. This show at Elsewhere is her first New York gig in a while, and she’s joined by fellow local heroes Malory, False Witness, and others. In all likelihood, Yaeji’s journey is just getting started — see her in a small venue while you still can.