Monday, June 10
The Hindu Pirates are young (the five guys range in age from 18 to 22), but they manage to pack a learned wallop in their sets without getting stuck on the garage-surf rock references. Hailing from Orange County, the quintet has distinguished itself by opening for bands including Delta Spirit, Matt Costa and Grouplove, acing a visit to SXSW and staying humble all the while. Their current residency (which celebrates the release of their In the Dark 7-inch split single with Rainbow Jackson), will include new songs and the premiere of the music video for title track "In the Dark." Their fun-loving attitude defines their music, hitching bluesy guitar riffs and walls of reverb with energetic gusto. Citing across-the-board influences, including David Bowie and Johnny Cash, these Pirates have something for everyone. The lineup also features The Dead Ships, Brooklyn-based The Sinclairs and Minneapolis' BNLX. --Britt Witt
The more Summer Twins singer Chelsea Brown warns you that she's bad news, the more you can't help falling in love with her anyway. "I'll break your heart in two/It's true," she insists on the Riverside garage-pop band's new single, "I'm No Good." But Brown's achingly yearning vocals fill the lonely spaces of the ballad with such a warm and comforting presence that you want to get closer, not run away. On the equally self-effacing flipside, "Forget Me," Brown is just as wistfully endearing as her sad-pretty vocals wend through her and Alan Olney's sparkling reverb guitars and her sister Justine Brown's emphatic garage-rock drum accents. Summer Twins continue their free residency tonight with similarly disarming new reveries from an upcoming EP. --Falling James
Tuesday, June 11
Not to drag up that shopworn and troublingly vague term "visionary" ad infinitum, but it does fit Björk so well. The Icelandic singer-composer had an idea for her 2011 "album," Biophilia, wherein it would challenge a few conventions of music and art's delivery to the brain and heart. It was the first album to be released as a suite of iPad and iPhone apps, and its intent was far-seeing and hugely ambitious: It would be not just a collection of new songs but an educational project for children, using sound, texts and visuals, whose areas of exploration included plate tectonics, genetics and human biorhythms, no less. And the music?... Who said anything about music? Just kidding. Björk coos, pleads and belts with such an utterly genuine joy/pain/wonder that it makes even her high intellectual concepts and spectacular visual displays a bit like, well, icing on the cake. After a three-night run performing Biophilia at the Palladium, tonight Björk incorporates other hits into her magic act at the illustrious Bowl. --John Payne
Wednesday June 12
Tijuana No!, Fermin Muguruza
Some of the most intense and Clash-like European punk rock of the 1980s and '90s came out of the Basque country, with bands like the ska-punks Kortatu and rap/punk hybrid Negu Gorriak, both led by Fermin Muguruza. It was perhaps Muguruza's lifelong fight to maintain cultural independence in the face of a larger and more controlling neighboring country that led him to identify with Mexican punks Tijuana No!, who defiantly championed the Zapatistas and decried la migra. Muguruza produced Tijuana No's second album, Transgresores de la Ley, which also featured a contribution or two from French world-music superstar Manu Chao. But it's Tijuana No!'s final studio release, 1998's Contra Revolución Avenue, that might be the great lost rock album of the 1990s. The album is a fantastically multilayered, bilingual and psychedelic mélange of hardcore punk, ska, rap, metal and reggae, featuring such guest stars as Kid Frost, H.R. and Kim Deal. What made Tijuana No! unique is that they featured three disparately exciting lead singers. Sadly, the group's punk-rock gadfly, Luis Güereña, died in 2004, but this reunion could be really special if singer-keyboardist Ceci Bastida makes a rare appearance alongside ongoing vocalist/flutist Teca Garcia. --Falling James
Thursday, June 13
Fall Out Boy
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Perhaps the most punk thing about Fall Out Boy is the quartet's fuck-you ability, in the face of almost unrivaled critical lambasting, to sell out major venues worldwide. Much of the hatin' apparently is fallout from F.O.B. having the nerve to actually sonically develop between the emo-tinted punk-lite of their 2003 debut LP, Take This to Your Grave, and the heavily produced, R&B-referencing pop of Infinity on High four years later. Whatever. Infinity is a world-class parade of stirring melodies sent soaring by frontman Patrick Stump's two-octave, Michael Jackson-y croon, despite the considerable burden of bassist Pete Wentz's smarty-pants lyrics. Though follow-up Folie à Deux was a rush-job duffer, Stump & Co. return refocused on newbie Save Rock and Roll, a passionate, nostalgic platter featuring guests including Elton John and Big Sean. --Paul Rogers
"I'm burning up for you," Emily Wells declares on her new song, "Los Angeles," her voice trailing off slowly over a desolate desert landscape. Sparse flecks of guitar float past her breathily spacey vocals, with an occasional twist of country slide every few horizons or so. The soft and shadowy "Los Angeles" isn't likely to replace "I Love L.A." at ballparks anytime soon, but Wells' fragile vocals linger with a subtly haunting intimacy. In the past, this mad scientist has married hip-hop beats and elaborate arrangements to her classical violin weavings, but on Wells' upcoming unplugged release, Mama Acoustic Recordings, she's recasting the songs from last year's Mama album in a more austere fashion. --Falling James