The best Twin Cities concerts: 11/20-11/25

Gary_Clark_Jr_Promo.jpg
Photo courtesy of the artist

Another fantastic week in Twin Cities music. Blues delight Gary Clark Jr. hits First Avenue to kick things off. Fitz & the Tantrums spend their Thursday night at the Myth while Ivan & Alyosha play the Triple Rock. Fuck Knights return from their European Tour with a show at the 331 and the Pines kick off their two nights at The Cedar. Saturday marks the First Avenue benefit for local icon Sue McLean and Fathom Lane's Release at Icehouse. Monday, Rokia Traoré plays the Cedar, and Hollerado plays the 7th Street Entry.

Wednesday 11.20.2013

Gary Clark Jr.
First Avenue

Fifteen years ago, the White Stripes emerged as the finest blues-based act in the land, only to face scrutiny that, as two pale white kids, they were somehow inauthentic. There are no such questions about singer/guitarist Gary Clark Jr.'s legitimacy. He's black, true, but he's also been playing the blues since he was a teen prodigy in Austin. Whereas his common reference point Jimi Hendrix was a pioneer of multiplicity, fusing genres together, Clark is happy to work in one form at a time. On last year's Blak and Blu, it was sweltering stadium-rock ("Bright Lights"), country blues ("Next Door Neighbor Blues"), misty-eyed soul ("Please Come Home"), and New Edition- style R&B ("The Life"). His fretboard gymnastics? Worth the price of admission alone. With the Wild Feathers and Max Frost. --Mike Madden
18+, $26.50, 7 PM

Paper Lions with Hot Freaks and Jordan Klassen
7th Street Entry
Sunny Melodies
18+, $8/$10, 7:30 PM

Less Than Jake
The Varsity Theater
Ska-style
18+, $20-$30, 7 PM

Thursday 11.21.2013

Amy Helm / Martha Scanlan
James J Hill Reference Library

Old friends and true angelic voices of Americana, Amy Helm and Martha Scanlan are reunited here via the Real- Phonic Radio Hour. A founder of the roots band Ollabelle, Amy Helm sings and plays mandolin and drums like her illustrious dad, the Band's Levon, whose Midnight Ramble (an inspiration for Real-Phonic) she's keeping alive in Woodstock, N.Y. With guitarist Byron Isaacs, she may be premiering material from a solo album due early next year. Isaacs and both Helmses played on Scanlan's well-received 2007 solo debut, The West Was Burning. A St. Paul native now living on a Montana ranch whose rural splendor inspired her latest EP (Tongue River Stories), Scanlan hones a spare, rustic spirit, her voice, like Iris DeMent's, evoking tenderness, truth, and inner strength. -Rick Mason
$20. 8 PM

Fitz & the Tantrums with Capital Cities
The Myth
Retro Smooth
AA, $25/$28, 7:30 PM

Real Numbers Cassette Release with Teenage Moods, Frankie Teardrop and Hot Rash
The Hexagon
Mod Pop
21+, FREE, 9:30 PM

Dave Boquist and Friends with Echomaker and Lou Batholome Trio
Turf Club
Eclectic Electric
21+, $5, 8 PM

August Burns Red with Blessthefall, Defeater and Beartooh
Mill City Nights
Emo Probably
15+, $23/$25, 8 PM

Shad with Wa Are The City and Rapper Hooks
7th Street Entry
Sharp Lyrics
18+, $10/$12, 8 PM

Selena Gomez with Emblem3
Target Center
Teen Scene
AA, $30-$50, 7 PM

Ivan & Alyosha
Triple Rock

Trafficking in the same brand of toe- tapping Americana-leaning sound as artists like M. Ward, Seattle's Ivan & Alyosha had already built buzz with two EPs before full-length All the Times We Had arrived in February. The album's 11 tracks mine plenty of magic from the pairing of frontman Tim Wilson's smooth, slightly twangy tenor with his band's sparkly and highly melodic brand of mid-tempo folk-rock. With Matrimony. --Rob Van Alstyne
18+, $13/$15, 7:30 PM

Friday 11.22.2013

Fuck Knights with Southside Desire
331
Groovy Dance Tunes
21+, FREE, 10 PM

Brendan Canning with Escondido and Dinosaur Bones
7th Street Entry
Broken Social Scene
18+, $15, 8 PM

Web of Sunsets with Prissy Clerks and Erros Magicos
Turf Club
Moss-Covered Melodies
21+, $6, 9 PM

Cults with Sacco and Mood Rings
First Avenue
Cold Knot Breakups
18+, $16/$18, 8 PM

The Pines with Dave Simonett
The Cedar Cultural Center
Folk Roots
AA, $18/$20, 7 PM

Carroll with Red Daughters, Fire in the Northern Firs and Ghost Towns of the West
The Cabooze
Sonic and Ambient
18+, $7, 8:30 PM

Elton John
Xcel Energy Center
Tiny Dancer
AA, $30-$149, 7 PM

Busdriver
Triple Rock

Busdriver manages to sound like a fresh voice no matter where the rest of rap has been over his 14-year career. The Los Angeles rapper recently contributed to indie label Hellfyre Club's latest collection, Dorner vs. Tookie, often stealing the show even among a similarly ear-grabbing roster of left-field talents. Live, his polysyllabic machine-gun flow decimates dance floors and finds a niche both heady and club- ready. Labelmates Open Mike Eagle and Milo provide support and prove the avant- garde West Coast sound that evolved from the infamous Project Blowed is alive and well. --Jack Spencer
18+, $10/$12, 8 PM



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2 comments
Mo Bluntz
Mo Bluntz

Thanks for putting our CD release on the list! Triple Rock 11.25 Cruel Love

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