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Music Picks: Of Montreal, Kristeen Young, Sofia Gubaidulina, 

Also, Federico Aubele, Fancy Space People, Golden State and others

Thursday, May 12 2011
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fri 5/13

 

The Kills

click to flip through (2) PHOTO BY SHAWN BRACKBILL - The Kills: See Friday.
  • PHOTO BY SHAWN BRACKBILL
  • The Kills: See Friday.
 
 

Location Info

 

@ THE MUSIC BOX

After her three-year musical fling with Jack White in the melodramatic blues exorcists the Dead Weather, prodigal daughter Alison Mosshart reunites with her old partner Jamie Hince in the melodramatic art-rock duo the Kills. The pair's fourth album, Blood Pressures, is another mesmerizing collection of lurching guitar chords, tribal rhythms and enigmatically romantic lyrical exchanges. In the Kills' tear- and bloodstained world, passion flickers and trembles "like the pinball lights" and thumps "like a broken sail." And yet, even with all of the fuzzy, crunchy, hard-edged chaos of rants like "DNA" and "Satellite," the album's highlight might be the atypically low-key closing tune, "Pots and Pans," which echoes the unexpected poppiness of the sublimely bittersweet ballad "Black Balloon" from the Kills' previous album, Midnight Boom. —Falling James

 

Man Man, Shilpa Ray

 

@ El Rey Theatre

[See Page Two.]

 

Futura With Mia Doi Todd, Teebs, Asura

 

@ CENTER FOR THE ARTS EAGLE ROCK

Los Angeles singer-songwriter Todd sings a gracefully conceived form of the art-folk genre. Hers is joltingly intimate song craft at times, gingerly plucked on acoustic guitar and sung pristinely in a voice taking a defiant stand for joy, love and enlightenment. She's culled this sonic point of view from an intriguing range of musics — her new album Cosmic Ocean Ship includes covers of "Gracias a la Vida" by Chilean folk icon Violeta Parra and "Canto de Iemanjá," the Afro-samba composed by Baden Powell and Vinícius de Moraes. She continually redefines her repertoire in collaborations with many of the most forward-looking thinkers/players from Los Angeles' electronic scene, a group that includes tonight's co-stars, Teebs and Asura. —John Payne

Brian McKnight, Jagged Edge

 

@ NOKIA THEATRE

Sigh. Always the Grammy nominee, never the winner. But when you have 16 noms, as soulful multi-instrumentalist McKnight does, who cares? The New York native might sing to the flesh, as opposed to the spirit (his older brother founded a cappella gospel group Take 6), but even when insisting "What's My Name?" his voice is washed in the gospel music of that old-time religion. After spending a few years as a radio and television host, he's back with a 10th album, featuring 10 new songs, as well as a disc of solo acoustic concert performances. Expect an intimate setup that spotlights the way the softened edges of McKnight's voice cushion his bundle of Quiet Storm classics. With Atlanta's baby-makin' R&B bounce group Jagged Edge. —Rebecca Haithcoat

Also playing Friday:

THE HENRY CLAY PEOPLE at the Satellite; URGE OVERKILL at the Troubadour; JEFFERTITTI'S NILE, ALLAH-LAS at Bordello; THE DAYLIGHTS at Hotel Café; NOCTURNAL at the Blvd.; JOHN MAUS at the Echo; LARRY KOONSE, JEFF COLLELA, CHRIS COLANGELO at Blue Whale.

 

sat 5/14

 

Of Montreal

 

@ AVALON

More of a ringleader than a frontman, singer Kevin Barness directs the Athens, Ga., psych-pop band in a larger-than-life, psychedelic explosion of fantastical costumes, creepy sideshow characters and bizarre props that feels like Alice in Wonderland on (even more) acid. This will be your chance to hear their latest, Thecontrollersphere, come alive and welcome them back on the freak track. Expect more costume changes in mere minutes than you thought humanly possible in an entire week for this postmodern theatrical spectacle. Also, half-naked bodies — including Barness' — covered in glitter and shimmery paint, and various manifestations of Barness' obsession with human-beast hybrids. With the dreamy electro-pop of L.A.'s own Nite Jewel. —Lainna Fader

Rusko

 

@ THE WILTERN

So what if none of the music Rusko created for Britney Spears' Femme Fatale made that album's final cut — dude's still headlining a sold-out Wiltern as the last date of his North American tour. Widely credited as dubstep's crossover king, the currently L.A.-based knob-twiddler hit a radio-ready sweet spot on last year's O.M.G.!, recruiting Gucci Mane and Amber Coffman of Dirty Projectors to stud his bass-in-your-face with some snap-crackle-pop. Expect to hear plenty from the album tonight, as well as his sparkly new single, "Everyday," which one iTunes customer recently referred to as evidence that Rusko has been "raped by the mainstream." With Doorly and Destructo. —Mikael Wood

Desecrate

 

@ WHISKY A GO GO

One of the charms of "true" metal bands like this is that they truly try. They try to be technical masters of their instruments; try to put on a spectacle of a show; and try to have a bloody good time while so doing (faux-indifferent indie bands take note). These Burbank boys are all about stretch jeans, waist-length hair and funny-shaped guitars — shirtless hesher heroes mining early Metallica, Megadeth and Maiden (i.e., metal before the sacrilegious scourge of screamo). Double-kick beats are battered around as much as beneath twin widdle-fest guitars, while song structures wander with perhaps more ambition than direction. Oh, and big plus: Unlike most contemporary metal frontmen, Nick Simile's lyrics — stuff about power and darkness — are actually audible in his soaring, Tarzanesque timbre. —Paul Rogers

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