Monday, February 3
By the time you read this, Moses Sumney will be ... actually, who could even guess? Usually, when an artist supposedly comes out of nowhere, they really just came from a long time spent in some secret music scene where no one was paying attention. But Sumney seems like he really did POW! into existence with a fully realized yet still-evolving sound, which marries up-to-the-minute digital loopery to the most daring folk experiments of the late '60s and '70s. (On Twitter, he mentions he's just getting into Joanna Newsom - someone make that introduction!) In about six months, Sumney has gone from the bedroom to the main stage, and by the time he gets out a full-length, people should be (rightly) losing their minds. - Chris Ziegler
See also: 10 L.A. Bands Who Will Blow Up in 2014
There are just two Bots, but they combine to make an unholy, Afropunk roar that's louder and more fearsome than the din created by much larger groups. As if that's not enough, brothers Anaiah Lei (drums) and Mikaiah Lei (guitars) have been playing onstage together since they were 12 and 15, respectively. Now, at the ripe old ages of 16 and 20, the Glendale duo is far more than a cute kid-rock act. Simply put, The Bots are one of the few truly original and bracingly exciting new punk bands, amply capable of dishing out sludgy slabs of hard rock like "Notre Monde" and such contemplative, bluesy ballads as "No One Knows" alongside more traditional light-speed bursts "I Like Your Style" and "Northern Lights." It's no surprise, then, that the Lei brothers' smashing of disparate influences has attracted disparate fans including Damon Albarn and Rise Against's Laura Jane Grace. - Falling James
Tuesday, February 4
The Hounds Below
Jason Stollsteimer is often remembered for his messy altercation with The White Stripes' Jack White back in 2003, but he's always been a melodic pop-rock songwriter, whether with his longtime Detroit group The Von Bondies or his latest band, The Hounds Below. The Hounds' new album, You Light Me Up in the Dark, is full of hard-rocking power-pop anthems such as "Chelsea's Calling," where Stollsteimer's wistful vocals are torched further by Mathew Hofman's guitar. "For You and I" couldn't be further from a typical Motor City garage-rock revival. It's a stirring anthem that inverts Arcade Fire euphoria with a more lyrically cynical (yet ultimately romantic) perspective, bathed in Hofman's sparkling blips of Cure-like '80s guitar. - Falling James
Wednesday, February 5
HOUSE OF BLUES
Turns out there's only so much an artist can express clad in a creepy mask and jumpsuit, fronting a frenzied mega-metal band of blokes in creepy masks and jumpsuits. So Slipknot singer Corey Taylor also emotes through Stone Sour, a more mainstream, less image-conscious act, which actually precedes his musical mothership and has been too prolific, popular and enduring (formed in 1992) to still be a "side project." These Iowans' music, literally and metaphorically, beats from the American heartland: a solid-hewn melding of contemporary heavy metal and post-grunge radio rawk distinguished by Taylor's charismatic, big-brotherly baritone. Last year's House of Gold & Bones - Part 2 finds Stone Sour in fiery form, with clenched-teeth riffs and burly beats offset by grown-up strings and contemplative keys. - Paul Rogers
Thursday, February 6
Action Bronson's delivery bears an eerie sonic resemblance to Ghostface Killah's. He also cooks a mean lamb burger. After graduating from the Art Institute of New York's culinary program, the outspoken Queens native worked regularly throughout his 20s as a gourmet chef. Since releasing the well-received 2011 mixtape Bon Appetit B****, he has self-released four mixtapes chock-full of witty wordplay and food references. In 2013, he was named a member of XXL magazine's Freshmen Class, and the father of two also hosts a food series on Vice.com. His Vice/Atlantic records debut, Saab Stories, was released in June. Tonight's attendees are warned not to bum-rush the stage, as the big-boned wrestling fanatic is known to body-slam stage crashers. - Jacqueline Michael Whatley
Dan West and Azalia Snail are the poster children for grown-up romantic mush, and their psych-pop trio LoveyDove excels at delivering rich, fully realized celebratory treatises on the subject. The band's intricately arranged songs carry a penetrating, organic appeal, one borne of the ardent lovers' psych-sync and unmatched natural-fact musicality. Snail has long and successfully toiled in the lo-fi underworld, while West is an accomplished composer-arranger, and rarely have professionalism and passion combined with such artistic merit. LoveyDove is not just about self-stimulating declarations of passion, however; the band actively aims to uplift its audience and illuminate a path out of the dark jungle of anger and resentment in which so many of us endlessly wander. A tall order, yes, but in their hands it has led to a superbly crafted set of songs, all featured on their self-titled debut CD, which tonight's show is celebrating. Prepare for a profoundly transportive flight. - Jonny Whiteside
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