The best Twin Cities concerts: 4/24-4/30


It's the last week of April, and the snow is finally melting away. Wednesday, local favorites Poliça play a show in the First Avenue Mainroom, while songwriter Josh Ritter plays a set the next night. Mill City Nights also welcomes Mindless Self Indulgence as new local band Ginkgo plays a set at the Turf Club.The Walker Art Center welcomes innovative jazz keyboardist Craig Taborn on Friday. Cloud Cult plays a two-night, sold out show in First Avenue's Mainroom over the weekend, and punchy garage rockers Bleached bring the California sun to the Turf Club Sunday.

Wednesday 4.24.2013

Emery with Wolves at the Gate, the Seeking, Peace Mercutio, and the Suit

Station 4

Screaming Alternative

All ages, $15, 5 PM

Poliça with Night Moves and Ronia

First Avenue Mainroom

Toned vocals

18+, $25, 7:30 PM

Tera Melos with TTNG, Self-Evident

7th Street Entry

Technical Precision

18+, $10/$12, 8 PM

Thursday 4.25.2013

Josh Ritter & the Royal City Band

First Avenue Mainroom

Written and recorded in the wake of the collapse of his marriage, Josh Ritter's latest album, The Beast in Its Tracks, is unsurprisingly anchored in personal heartache. Prior efforts like So Runs the World Away directed Ritter's substantial lyrical gifts outward and spun epic tales from odd premises — "The Curse" chronicled the love affair between a museum worker and reanimated mummy — but his latest is considerably more self-focused. A similarly intimate sentiment prevails sonically, with Ritter's wounded twang supported by spare acoustic instrumentation, drum kits only gently brushed when they bother to appear at all. In less capable hands such a tight lyrical focus and naked sound would prove highly problematic, but Ritter makes it all work by letting his stellar lyrics do the heavy lifting. Ritter's precisely poignant wording on lead single "Joy to You Baby" provides a riveting trip down a well-worn path ("I go to the parties/Throw my hands in the air/I drink what they pour me/The cups of who cares"). With Sea Wolf (solo acoustic). —Rob Van Alstyne

18+, $25, 7:30 PM

Mindless Self Indulgence with The Red Paintings

Mill City Nights

Twisted Lyrics

AA, $24.50-$27, 7 PM

Ginkgo and Votel

Turf Club

Frenetic Vocals

21+, $6, 9 PM

Free Energy with Hollow Boys, Old Moon

Triple Rock Social Club

Howling Vocals

18+, $10, 8 PM

Caroline Smith

Dakota Jazz Club

Acoustic Duo Set

AA, $15, 7 PM

William Tyler with Bora York, Southwire

7th Street Entry

Bittersweet Nostalgia

18+, $8/$10, 8 PM

Friday 4.26.2013

Danny Brown

Triple Rock Social Club

Detroit rapper Danny Brown once recorded a mixtape with G-Unit roughneck Tony Yayo. He also claims Love's Forever Changes as his favorite album of all time. This (ostensible) paradox goes a long way toward explaining why Brown is one of the more unusual figures in music today. XXX, from 2011, was his breakout, and deservedly so — it's one of the best, most consistent rap releases of the past few years. But follow-up Old is due late this summer, and much of the material Brown's been debuting recently (including the ironically explosive "Kush Coma") suggests it could actually be an improvement over its excellent predecessor. At any rate, we know the 32-year-old is on his shit right now. With Tumblr lightning-rod Kitty, a.k.a. the self-proclaimed "rap game Taylor Swift." —Mike Madden

18+, $20, 8

Craig Taborn

Walker Art Center

Innovative jazz keyboardist and Golden Valley native Craig Taborn will be feted on his home turf in this multi-format showcase of his eclectic projects, dubbed Heroic Frenzies. Taborn studied music locally before he went off to college and by the early '90s was a member of James Carter's band. Subsequently he juggled his own projects and extensive session work with the likes of Roscoe Mitchell, Tim Berne, Chris Potter, and Bill Laswell. Plus, he teamed up with notable locals Dave King, Greg Norton, and Erik Fratzke in Gang Font. Taborn has stretched from straight-ahead jazz to the avant-garde, experimenting with elements of electronica, funk, and rock. Here, Taborn will play in three different contexts. Junk Magic will feature drummer King, bassist Fratzke, tenor saxophonist Chris Speed, and Mat Maneri on viola, focusing on the boundary-shattering jazz/electronica/ambient/funk hybrid stuff on 2004's album of the same name. Taborn's Trio — drummer Gerald Cleaver, bassist Thomas Morgan — will likely concentrate on its just-released Chants, where the group takes an emphatic ensemble approach to Taborn originals dense with often angular ideas but still flowing with a sublime touch. Finally, Taborn will play solo piano pieces from his 2011 album Avenging Angel, notable for its fresh approach to the medium in expression and technique —Rick Mason

$22-$25. 8PM

Birthday Suits with Leisure Birds, Painted Ponies and Jan

Turf Club

Trash Rock
21+, Free, 9 PM

Fathom Lane with Actual Wolf

Aster Cafe

Intimate Vocals

AA, $10, 8:30 PM


Kitty Cat Klub

Grooving to the Oldies

21+, $5, 9 PM

The New Standards

Dakota Jazz Club

Famous Local Trio

AA, $30, 8 PM, 10PM

David Wilcox

Cedar Cultural Center


AA, $24/$26, 7 PM

Kinetix with Apollo Cobra and Hyentyte


Funky Melodies

18+, $10-$12, 8:30 PM

Lucero with Langhorne Slim & the Law

First Avenue Mainroom

Whisky Soaked

18+, $20, 8 PM

On An On with the Farewell Circuit, Aaron & the Sea

7th Street Entry

Indie Pop

18+ , $10, 9:30 PM

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