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

See Wednesday: Xiu Xiu
See Wednesday: Xiu Xiu
Photo by Dan Bleckley

Be sure to check out our constantly updated concert calendar!

Monday, April 21

Lawrence Rothman
He's Elizabeth Taylor cavorting with trannies at the Chateau Marmont, or he's the bloody-pulp victim of a severe beating, or he's a rotten-toothed prisoner banging the bars of his dank, dark cell. L.A. musician/conceptual artiste Lawrence Rothman's videos portray the protagonist as an ever-mutating assemblage of characters who communicate via Rothman's rich baritone croon and moody house/R&B/noir-cinema production. Surgically probing the murky recesses of his troubled self (selves), Rothman creates an invitingly strange, Lynchian world, zeroing in on the worst of life in order to make something like the best of life. Rothman brings several new personas to his residency every Monday night in April at the Bootleg; tonight's event also features Gallant and Jarell Perry. - John Payne

Tuesday, April 22

Considering that just about all rock music is based on blues and R&B, it has always been a national shame that so few African-Americans get much support in the rock world. Of course, the Detroit hard-rock outfit Death would have been an anomaly in any era. Composed of three brothers - Bobby, Dannis and the late David Hackney - Death could space out with such melodic opuses as "Let the World Turn" but also had a heavy, aggressive sound on searing tracks such as "Politicians in My Eyes," which anticipated groups like Bad Brains and The Bots (and punk rock in general, although the band's breakup in 1977 prevented them from taking advantage of that cultural shift). The 2012 documentary A Band Called Death brought them overdue attention, inspiring Bobby and Dannis Hackney to reunite. - Falling James

Wednesday, April 23

Revolver Golden Gods Awards
The sixth annual Revolver Golden Gods Awards show will feature live performances by some of the biggest names in hard rock and metal. Two of the night's most prestigious honors will go to two of hard rock's living legends: Axl Rose, who is taking home a Lifetime Achievement Award, and Joan Jett, honored as a Golden God. The night will feature the area's first Guns N' Roses live set since the band's 2011 show at the Forum (and no, the show won't feature the Appetite for Destruction lineup). Additional artists slated to perform include Jett and the Blackhearts, Korn, A Day to Remember, Zakk Wylde and The Pretty Reckless. For hard-rock fans, seeing any of these bands in a small setting is worth the price of admission. - Daniel Kohn
Living proof that punk rock and snotty youth are not, after all, indivisible, L.A.'s Off! - comprised of current and former members of Circle Jerks, Burning Brides, Redd Kross and Rocket From the Crypt - bring a veteran's clarity of vision to the genre, which only hones their sonic vitriol. Shunning the aural ambiguities of many of punk's later substrains (pop-punk, ska-punk, post-punk, etc.), the quartet cuts to the quick, figuratively and literally, with songs that get real fast, real fast - Dimitri Coats' garage-fuzz guitars seldom linger even four beats on a single chord, while Keith Morris' semi-shouted rants detail stuff that apparently makes him pretty darn angry. A timeless SoCal soundtrack to pool skating and kegger crashing, Off! redefines "all-ages punk" in the best possible way. - Paul Rogers

Xiu Xiu
Xiu Xiu's latest album, Angel Guts: Red Classroom, is even denser and more disturbing than the electronic band's previous release, Always. Leader Jamie Stewart, Xiu Xiu's one original member, growls and mutters cryptic sentiments on "New Life Immigration" and "Stupid in the Dark." Even his synthesizers and banks of electronics appear to mock him in return, sending out waves of mind-blotting noise as Stewart shudders and sounds like he's weeping on "The Silver Platter." Xiu Xiu have occasionally used their arty instincts to show a way out of the darkness through melody, especially on past tracks featuring Angela Seo. But Angel Guts involves a much more tangled and nightmarish fall down the rabbit hole. - Falling James

Thursday, April 24

Chick Corea & Béla Fleck
Pianist Chick Corea's career dates back to the 1960s, when he first came to prominence in the bands of Miles Davis as a member of the seminal Bitches Brew - era lineups, which helped launch jazz fusion. Corea has kept himself involved in a wide range of musical projects, which have led him to a record 22 Grammy and Latin Grammy Awards. Banjo master Béla Fleck is no stranger to musical variety, expanding from traditional bluegrass to world, fusion, classical and jazz, receiving Grammy nominations in more categories than any other musician, winning 12. Tonight the pair bring their 2007 Latin Grammy - winning album, The Enchantment, to life in a concert featuring a pair of America's genuine masters of music. - Tom Meek

Be sure to check out our constantly updated concert calendar!

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