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Music Picks: Nicole Atkins & the Black Sea, Teebs, Los Amigos Invisibles, Rare Grooves 

Also Parkway Drive, Martha Wainwright, Anna Tijoux, the Deadbeats and others

Thursday, Feb 10 2011
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FRIDAY/FEBRUARY/11

BIG BOI, CEE-LO GREEN, RYAN LESLIE AT CLUB NOKIA

[See Music feature]

click to enlarge Susan James. See Tuesday.
  • Susan James. See Tuesday.

Location Info

TEEBS, ASURA, AUSTIN PERALTA, REBEKAH RAFF AT FUTURA AT CENTER FOR THE ARTS, EAGLE ROCK

The big-beat flow-motion series "Futura" comes courtesy of L.A. prog-hop mutators Daddy Kev, Flying Lotus and ERMF, who promise nights with the most forward-thinking musical and visual minds in L.A.'s DJ/electronic scene. Tonight's the official record release for Austin Peralta's Endless Planets album on Mr. Lotus' very fine Brainfeeder label. Peralta will be accompanied by Thundercat and Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, while harpist/mixer Rebekah Raff performs a solo set. Also Teebs, whose recent Brainfeeder set Ardour is both a deep-thumping and a delicately melodic set of time warps. He's also an acutely out-there mixologist, as his beautifully intuitive meltdown of the Gaslamp Killer & Daedelus' "Impulse" recently showed. Classically trained Asura is equally dedicated to dance-floor boombap and elegantly otherworldly synth melodies rooted in free jazz, contemporary classical composition, folk song and sound design. Visuals by Strangeloop. All ages. (John Payne)

MIKE WATT & THE SECONDMEN AT THE REDWOOD BAR & GRILL

Mike Watt continues to be San Pedro's leading post-punk Renaissance man, cranking out an astonishing amount of music with his mighty "thud staff." The singer-bassist-poet plays in the reconstituted Iggy & the Stooges, jams in the all-star combos Hellride and Banyan, participates in such disparate projects as the Unknown Instructors and Dos, and hosts his own podcast, The Watt From Pedro Show. Many of his personas and talents converge on his aptly titled new album with the Secondmen, Hyphenated-Man, a self-described "punk opera" that collects 30 minisongs inspired by paintings by Hieronymous Bosch. More than anything, tracks like "Stuffed-in-the-Drum-Man" and "Boot-Wearing-Fish-Man" recall the condensed minimalism of his old group the Minutemen, as jagged, arty riffs collide with jagged, arty scraps of poetry, with the accumulation of small details combining into a bigger statement of purpose and a clearer portrait of self. Ever the hard worker, this blue-collar visionary also gets busy on Saturday with Hellride at the Central Aid & Social Pleasure Club, jamming with MC5 guitarist Brother Wayne Kramer and "whupping up Stooges in a John Coltrane way." (Falling James)

MARTHA WAINWRIGHT AT LARGO AT THE CORONET

Singer-songwriter Martha Wainwright is the daughter of singer/actor Loudon Wainwright III and singer-songwriter Kate McGarrigle, and her older brother's named Rufus. Martha's got her own homespun take on things, which she blasted out on her 2005 self-titled debut album and 2008's I Know You're Married but I've Got Feelings Too. Hers are a voice and persona that bespeak genuine hurt and fierce pride: Somewhere along the way her heart got broken, she stumbled and fell, now she howls it out with a rather spectacular vocal instrument, one stunning in its range. The effect is sensually pleasing and scorching in the uncompromising and apparently uncontrollable honesty with which she reveals the very core of her heart. Fittingly, this evening she'll also channel Edith Piaf. (John Payne)

NOBUNNY, DREAM DATE, RED ONIONS AT 6TH STREET WAREHOUSE

Power poppers Milk 'n' Cookies used to do a song called "Rabbits Make Love." Fast-forward to 2011 and Nobunny is fulfilling this power-pop prophecy with Sweet-style rock & roll energy bundled up inside Ramonesy I-wanna-be-your-something-something songs about all the wonderful mess that happens when two people get together and decide to call it a day. Toss a little Velvet Underground, Cramps and Hasil Adkins into the mix and you have a lot of bang for your 10 bucks. Admired and supported by Jack White and the dearly departed Jay Reatard — and scheduled to play the Playboy Mansion in a bunny-on-bunny extravaganza this year — Nobunny makes both love and lovely punky songs about love with an even mix of enthusiasm and technique. Newbunnies should pick up the classic albums Love Visions and the newish First Blood, but the real lovers already have their own faded copies of Raw Romance, which is Nobunny at his rowdiest. Also, Oakland's Dream Date and San Pedro's Red Onions, plus a "kissing booth" for the truly morally decrepit among you. (Kristina Benson)

SMITH WESTERNS, YUCK AT THE ECHO

It makes good sense that Smith Westerns recently wrapped up a tour with San Francisco's Girls. Though this fuzz-fueled quartet hails from Chicago, their music jibes perfectly with the current San Francisco sound — which is to say, shambling, hook-laden garage rock that openly worships at the altar of Marc Bolan. But while many of the Bay Area bands cling to their lo-fi status, the Westerns aren't afraid to get pretty, and they do just that on their brand new album, Dye It Blonde. Part of it could be the fact that they now have a budget (thanks to a recent signing to Fat Possum), but part of it, too, is that the band broadened its scope. While the Nuggets noise is still skulking around in Smith Westerns' songs, there's an unexpected influx of Britpop as well (i.e., Suede), which gives the record its sparkle. Live, those melodies really shine. Labelmates Yuck support, offering up a louder, more '90s-inspired mix of distorted guitars and catchy choruses. (Chris Martins)

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