The Best Concerts in L.A. This Week

Jessie Ware -- See Wednesday
Jessie Ware -- See Wednesday

Monday, January 21

Baron von Luxxury, Yellow Alex, Yung Skeeter

THE SATELLITE

Electro-pop comes in splendiferous shapes and sizes. And Baron von Luxxury brings the wicked-wit version, in which DeBarge, ELO, Hall & Oates and other formerly uncool '80s soul stylists float through the disco in super-smoove grooves and madly hooky tunes. Von Luxxury's ace The Last Seduction is out right now on Manimal Vinyl. Falsetto crooner Yellow Alex's classic soul and New Age pop brew blends Prince, Chic and FX with choreographed dance steps, bass lines and space-age sound, while Spotify "DJ in residence" Yung Skeeter, aka Trevor McFedries, has whipped out beats and remixes for Black Eyed Peas, Chris Brown and Azealia Banks. He had a top-10 album in 2007 with his rap crew Shwayze and now is launching a new mixtape/remix radio show with his Dim Mak label boss, Steve Aoki. --John Payne

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See also: Baron Von Luxxury on His Friends' Double-Suicide, Five Years Later

Tuesday, January 22

Quicksand

FONDA THEATRE

If there's a single reason why these New Yorkers can still fill distant theaters fully 18 years since their last release (1995's Manic Compression), it's because the aggressive sense of unease they summoned for much of the '90s has yet to be so convincingly revisited by anyone else. Quicksand are like an innocent inmate pacing a windowless cell on the eve of release, rippling with pent-up plans, belated explanations and overly marinated revenge. Like a less pretentious Tool, the recently reunited quartet bubbles, chugs and chimes on a riff until it takes on initially hidden shapes and implications, with Walter Schreifels' ragged utterances more another instrument than the main emotional event. Quicksand have come back because the intrinsically human disquiet they so deftly tap into never went away. --Paul Rogers

Wednesday, January 23

Muse

STAPLES CENTER

Not since late-'70s Queen, to whom they owe a hefty sonic debt, has anyone made radio-friendly rock as ambitious, eclectic, escapist and just plain epic as this English trio. On last year's The 2nd Law, they meld ostensibly incongruous elements including dubstep's ominous electronica, Freddie Mercury's strutting camp, masturbatory prog guitars and frontman Matthew Bellamy's Darkness-worthy falsetto into a thoughtfully orgasmic, emotionally overloaded opus. Now a full-blown Brit institution -- their song "Survival" served as the official song for last year's London Olympics -- and remarkably unfettered by their limited numbers (though augmented with a keyboardist/percussionist onstage), Muse craft live shows as fascinating and challenging as their recordings, consistently leaving the impression that something much more significant than mere notes and beats just happened. (Also Thurs., Jan. 24, & Sat., Jan. 26) --Paul Rogers

Sahtyre

LOW END THEORY

Rapper Sahtyre is a Project Blowed vet who started as a promising 13-year-old, invited by the mighty Kail to come down to the open-mic and learn to get REALLY good. Then he bounced toward the future after Low End Theory resident Nocando tipped him and fellow Swim Team MC Open Mike Eagle for great things. So here's a recent great thing: Sahtyre's grinding "LSD (The Anthem)." "Try to make me go to rehab like Amy," he growls, while an already ravaged beat collapses into bass and pixels and a sloooo-mo chorus. More monsters like this, please. With Scoop DeVille, the storied L.A. rapper and producer still sailing off his recent hit work on Kendrick Lamar's good kid, m.A.A.d city, and the happily soulful Dayvid Thomas. --Chris Ziegler

 

Jessie Ware, RAC, Rochelle Jordan

El Rey Theatre

Fresh off the U.K. leg of her 2013 tour, Britain's next big thing brings her undeniable brand of eclectic R&B to the West Coast for this highly anticipated engagement. The South London native once was an intern at the U.K.'s Jewish Chronicle but, after a fateful 2010 collaboration with lauded electronic outfit SBTRKT, the soulful chanteuse chose to navigate the musical path. Her widely revered vocal dexterity, likened to that of Sade by some critics, is best showcased on the celebrated tracks "Wildest Moments," "110%" and "Sweet Talk." In November her debut, Devotion, scored a nomination for the prestigious Mercury Prize. Tonight's show also features Drake-endorsed songstress Rochelle Jordan and master remixologist RAC. --Jacqueline Michael Whatley

Thursday, January 24

Wayne Kramer

GRAMMY MUSEUM

By 1975, Wayne Kramer was going nowhere fast. His main band, The MC5, had broken up three years earlier in a haze of drugs and declining popularity, and it would be several more years before the Detroit hard-rockers would receive belated recognition for influencing much of the punk generation. Meanwhile, the guitarist languished in a Kentucky prison, serving two years for selling cocaine. Kramer eventually cleaned up and turned his life around, working briefly with Was (Not Was), Johnny Thunders and even G.G. Allin, but he didn't fully get it together again musically until the '90s, when he released a series of unexpected and expansive solo albums that fused jazz and spoken word with his trademark hard-rock rambles. He hasn't forgotten his prison days and works now with the Jail Guitar Doors organization to provide guitars to inmates. If there's anyone who believes in second chances and the redemptive powers of a few, good loud power chords, it's Brother Wayne. --Falling James

FIDLAR

AMOEBA MUSIC

FIDLAR's Kuehn brothers are only now entering their 20s, but drummer Max and guitarist Elvis have already been in the punk-rock biz for more than 10 years, going back to their days in The Diffs. Yet the music on their recent single "No Waves" sounds as bratty and energetic as any band of preteens just starting out. If anything, there's even more of a subterranean garage-rock primitiveness to the single's equally negative flip side, "No Ass." Much of that insolence comes straight from singer Zac Carper, who sings as if he's always sneering -- and trapped inside a beer bottle. A band of brothers hasn't been this properly wild and cranky since the early era of Redd Kross. Catch FIDLAR now at this early-evening in-store set before they grow up/sober up and start playing more dignified and mature forms of music. --Falling James

See also: Fidlar Are Drunk, Reckless and Proud of It

Nir Felder

BLUE WHALE

Plenty of guitarists graduate from Boston's Berklee College of Music, but those who end up at the top of the heap are to be commended. In the nine years since his graduation, all Nir Felder has done is become a phenomenon in New York, playing with everybody, most notably alto sax sage Greg Osby. Felder cites John Scofield as an early influence, as shown by a willingness to explore guitar palettes trending more toward rock and blues. He also shreds like a rocker, albeit with a harmonic savvy that divulges his jazz training. You'd think at this point, someone this good would have his own album; stay tuned. With Felder are a fellow New Yorker, drummer Zach Danziger, and two Angelenos, both Kneebody cognoscenti: Adam Benjamin on keys and bassist Kaveh Rastegar. --Gary Fukushima

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123 Astronaut E.S. Onizuka St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012

213-620-0908

www.bluewhalemusic.com

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