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The Best Concerts to See In L.A. This Week

Icona Pop -- See Tuesday
Icona Pop -- See Tuesday
Photo courtesy of Icona Pop

Don't forget to check our constantly-updated Los Angeles Concert Calendar

Monday, December 16

Jeff Tweedy

LARGO

Fun fact: Wilco is now 20 years old. That might make you feel old, but it just makes Jeff Tweedy, the band's disheveled, occasionally cantankerous and regularly charming creative core, seem that much wiser. At 46, the singer-songwriter has spent more than twice the amount of time with his best-known band as with his shorter-lived first act, Uncle Tupelo. Fans have stopped listening to neither. It should be noted that all four of Tweedy's L.A. appearances this month are sold out. And for good reason: Although Yankee Hotel Foxtrot might be Wilco's loveliest and best-loved work, Tweedy and company proved only two years ago with The Whole Love that the group's golden age is impossibly long-lasting. The man who helped to define alt-country has a lot to be proud of, and early setlists suggest he's mining much of it this tour, including material from side projects Loose Fur and Golden Smog. --Kelsey Whipple

See also: The Most Boring Concerts I've Ever Seen

The Herbert Bail Orchestra

THE SATELLITE

The Herbert Bail Orchestra's lead singer and guitarist Anthony Frattolillo credits his mentor, Juan, a janitor and apparent musical genius from Chile, for his ax-playing skills, and for instilling the need to put true life into his songs' expression. Juan taught the young Frattolillo that his music ought to tell stories that come straight from the heart, and that if he's gonna play it all, he's gotta be really feeling it. As evidenced by his band's album The Future's in the Past, Frattolillo learned his lessons well, as he and accordion player/trombonist Andrew Katz deliver their wryly humorous narrative soundscapes with fervid glee and, better yet, painterly detail, aided by an ensemble of violin, trumpet, trombone, banjo, keys, bass and drums. This band is only getting better with time. --John Payne

Tuesday, December 17

Anna von Hausswolff

THE BOOTLEG

Intoning songs like "Death Bed" and "Funeral for My Future Children," Anna von Hausswolff probably isn't the happiest camper in her native Sweden. But she builds movingly beautiful soundscapes that combine her dramatic keening with swells of churchlike organ and grandly rolling tom-toms. On von Hausswolff's latest album, the aptly titled Ceremony, her voice hovers reverently over still, spacious musical settings, whether she's literally worshipping the sun on such ballads as "Sun Rise" and "Red Sun" or moving away from total darkness on "Liturgy of Light." She even has a way of making her soft flecks of guitar sound like falling ashes. --Falling James

NOFX

HOUSE OF BLUES

Compared with many of the punk bands to emerge from Los Angeles in the 1980s, NOFX is an anomaly. Few of their peers have been able to survive, nevertheless NOFX maintain many of the key elements (and band members) that have kept this quartet relevant well into its third decade. Led by Fat Mike, the group has grown more political in its latter years, unapologetically railing against government, homophobia, sexism and religion and supporting various left-wing causes. By maintaining an anti-commercial stance (they never signed to a major label), as well as with their oftentimes surly relationship with the media, NOFX are among the few bands to live and die by the punk ethos that marked the early days of the genre. With 12 albums to their name, NOFX have become punk-rock legends, a title they'd likely vehemently deny. --Daniel Kohn

 

Icona Pop

THE FONDA THEATRE

After delaying their summer tour due to illness, Icona Pop are alive and well and ready to get you on your feet. The Swedish duo, best known for hit "I Love It," brings high-level energy with those European party beats. When Caroline Hjelt and Aino Jawo introduced Icona Pop at the Culture Collide music festival in 2012, they stole the spotlight, holding nothing back and turning every stage they played into a buzzing club. Their electro-house bursts with classic pop melodies and girl-power lyrics. How do these ladies "do this all night" every night? Jawo explains, "You just decide to have a party tonight, and then you are the party." Their most recent single, "Girlfriend," pulls the beats back and tones down the sexuality, replacing it with the kind of true love only your best friend understands. This is girls-night-out power pop. Local rapper K. Flay kicks off the evening with her electronica-tinged hip-hop. --Britt Witt

Wednesday, December 18

Juliette Commagère

BOOTLEG THEATER

Thus far Juliette Commagère has resided in that sort of parallel world where gifted artists follow their muses, stay true to their instincts and still manage to create musical magic that routinely tops the pop charts. In the real world, megastardom hasn't come quite yet for Commagère, a supremely gifted singer/composer/multi-instrumentalist who has sung and played with the likes of Avenged Sevenfold and Puscifer and, more importantly, issued three solo albums of extraordinary beauty, depth and high-grade pop craft. Her latest is Human (out via Aeronaut), an electro-pop-tinged meisterwerk wherein the crystalline-voiced Commagère explores deeply personal tales re: the lasting value and sheer power of love in a world of material distraction. The album features Commagère's drummer /husband, Joachim Cooder, and her father-in-law, Ry Cooder. --John Payne

Thursday, December 19

Camp Freddy

ROXY THEATRE

While many an all-star cover band has come and gone over the past decade, Camp Freddy keeps packing 'em in (these three Roxy shows sold out in nine minutes), thanks largely to its only sporadic activity and the unpredictability of just what will happen at any given show. Consisting of a core lineup augmented by celeb guests who hop onstage for a song or two, Camp Freddy's backbone for this annual Christmas residency will be Billy Idol guitarists Steve Stevens and Billy Morrison, former Guns N' Roses/Velvet Revolver drummer Matt Sorum, actor Donovan Leitch and Jane's Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro and bassist Chris Chaney (a different lineup will grace the Roxy on New Year's Eve). Guests are seldom revealed in advance, but past Campers have included Ozzy Osbourne, Slash and even actress Gina Gershon. Also Friday and Saturday, Dec. 20-21. --Paul Rogers

See also: Camp Freddy's Billy Morrison and Donovan Leitch List Ten Important Cultural Moments of the 1990s

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Don't forget to check our constantly-updated Los Angeles Concert Calendar

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