The best concerts in the Twin Cities this week: 1/9-1/15

Photo by Dustin Solmonson
Plenty of music going on the the Twin Cities this week! The Dakota welcomes Motown legends Martha and the Vandellas for a two night stay, Wednesday and Thursday. Caroline Smith & the Good Night Sleeps will be headlining at the Cedar. First Avenue will be hosting a Best New Bands Concert featuring Wiping out Thousands, Bomba de Luz (pictured above), John Mark Nelson, Actual Wolf and more. 

Wednesday 1.9.2013

Local World Music Showcase: Ticket to Brasil, Lau Hawaiian Collective, Robert Everest Expedition
Cedar Cultural Center
This tripleheader is a great chance to chase the bleak Midwestern winter with medicinal doses of sounds rooted in far more tropical realms, yet played by residents of these twin icy burgs, representing the diverse local world-music community. Two of these bands are oriented to the intoxicating, provocative, deep reservoir of music from Brazil. Ticket to Brasil, led by Czech-born, classically trained guitarist Pavel Jany, focuses on breezy, nicely arranged bossa nova, samba, and jazz brasileiro from such icons as Jobim, Baden Powell, and Ary Barroso, with some sympathetic originals mixed in. Multilingual Minnesota native Robert Everest is another excellent guitarist who leads the group Beira Mar Brasil and presides over local Brazilian Carnaval blowouts. The Expedition is Everest's more expansive outfit, stretching out across Latin America, through Cuba to the Mediterranean, Africa, and beyond. Lau Hawaiian Collective, led by Kauai native singer and ukulele player Kim Sueoka, conjures up the alluring, intricate sway of traditional Hawaiian music. Her glistening voice joins the other bands in evoking welcome wafts of warmth amid the harsh land of the wind chill factor. --Rick Mason
$12-$15, 7:30 

Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
The Dakota 
If you wanna get fired up for the new year, you might want to head down to the Dakota to bask in the undiminished glory of Motown icon Martha Reeves's incendiary pipes, which'll be stokin' up a "Heat Wave" guaranteed to rocket listeners through 2013 and well beyond. The rumbling, explosive "Heat Wave," which ignited the charts alongside Beatlemania in 1964, was among multiple peaks that carried Martha & the Vandellas through Motown's '60s glory days, including such indelible nuggets as "Dancing in the Streets," "Jimmy Mack," "Nowhere to Run," and "Quicksand." Grittier and fiercer than other girl groups such as the Supremes, Martha and company rode their wondrous voices and treasure chest of Holland-Dozier-Holland nuggets to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The group originally broke up in 1973, but has been on the prowl again for some time with Reeves's sisters, Lois and Delphine, on board as the Vandellas, still inspiring gyrations on street corners everywhere. --Rick Mason
$50-$65 at 7 p.m. $40-$45 at 9 p.m

Thursday 1.10.2013

Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
The Dakota 
Classic Motown Girls
$50-$65 at 7 p.m. $40-$45 at 9 p.m

Caroline Smith & The Good Night Sleeps with Mankwe Ndosi 
Cedar Cultural Center

Revisiting a relatively staid live recording from the Cedar from three years ago is a reminder that prodigious Caroline Smith's performances have grown considerably more potent over the years. Whether she's in the middle of a quieter moment like "Eagle's Nest" or rising above the surge of "Scholarships," two standouts from 2011's Little Wind, Smith's punching harder all the time. Recently, her full-throated voice reached a new peak on this year's Minnesota Beatle Project, Vol. 4. With the Good Night Sleeps' able backing, the blond songstress gave "Cry Baby Cry" a soulful revamp, and hearing her reprise that vocal alone is reason enough to attend. Add the neo-soul fusion of Mankwe Ndosi, who dropped one of 2012's best with Science & Spirit, and it's an imperative to show up early. --Reed Fischer
AA, $12 adv, $15 day of, 7 PM

Red Desert CD Release with God Came From Space and Bolo
7th Street Entry 
Heavy Distortion 
18+, $7, 8 PM

Friday 1.11.2013

Bare Mutants with Fire in the Northern Firs and Claps
Turf Club

Jered Gummere's reverb-drenched garage rock with a touch of glam was an aughts staple in his group the Ponys: loud, bursting with hooks, and better than most other acts of that ilk. Three full-lengths and a few EPs from the Chicago group emerged first via the label In the Red and later Matador, much like the similarly gifted and sonically inclined Jay Reatard. Now, the rich-voiced Gummere's heading up Bare Mutants, who still tap a vintage garage vibe, but reap benefits of sumptuous backing vocals by the 1900s' Jeanine O'Toole. It would not be accidental to say this group's '60s pop underground sound is velvety. With Fire in the Northern Firs and Claps. --Reed Fischer
21+, $8, 8 p.m

Dwight Yoakam
Treasure Island Resort and Casino
Influential Country
12+, $38-$48, 8 PM

First Avenue Best New Bands feat. Actual Wolf, Bomba De Luz, Eleganza!, John Mark Nelson, Strange Names and Wiping Out Thousands
First Avenue Mainroom
Twin Citians are fortunate to lay claim to one of the most stylistically diverse local music scenes in the country, but all too often that diversity is easy to miss due to self-segregating genre-straitjacketed concert bills. Shindigs like First Avenue's annual Best New Bands showcase provide a welcome reminder of just how fun mixed-bag music nights can be. The seven acts performing tonight span a wide range of sounds, from immaculate orchestral folk-pop (wunderkind John Mark Nelson) and A.M. gold country-rock (Actual Wolf) to party-starting female-fronted hip hop (the Chalice) and slick electro-pop (Strange Names). Those who entertain thoughts of moving away every January as the deep freeze sets in will find attending this gig instantly lays them to rest. Featuring Actual Wolf, Bomba De Luz, the Chalice, Eleganza!, John Mark Nelson, Strange Names, Wiping Out Thousands. --Rob Van Alstyne
18+, $7, 7PM 

Midway Felix Slow Cold EP release show
Cause Spirits and Soundbar
Hip Hop With Heart
21+, $6, 9 PM

See Also:
Midway Felix flies solo

Lovely Dark, Villa, Fury Things, free. 
331 Club
Driving Vocals
21+, FREE, 10 PM 

Saturday 1.12.2013

Fuck Knights with Valet and Fate's Palette
Turf Club
Raging, Ragged Rock
21+, $6, 9 PM

Korda Records Showcase feat The Jim Ruiz Set, The Ocean Blue, The Starfolk, Typsy Panthre and DJ Jake Rudh
7th Street Entry 
Pristine Pop

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Tony Delmonte
Tony Delmonte

Forgot a major one. Triple Rock at 9pm. The Goodbars, Deaf Mexico, KFAN's Mouth Guitar Guy & Metallagher.

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