The Five Best Shows in Los Angeles This Weekend: Ariel Pink, Eagle Rock Music Festival
Friday, October 5
Ariel Pink and Dam-Funk
Dam-Funk and Nite Jewel's 2009 team-up, Nite Funk, turned out to be such a natural match that the world wondered aloud, or at least in retro-future fever dreams, How long must we wait for the ultimate collaboration of Pink Funk? Both Ariel and Dam are in absolute command of their alternate-world aesthetics, with sound and songs from a planet where R. Stevie Moore replaced R.E.M. and Steve Arrington's Slave got to be in charge of Saturday Night Fever. And now Pink Funk is here -- both live and on record! In fact, on their collab on Ariel's new album -- a cover of Donnie and Joe's "Baby" -- Ariel and Dam find their perfect overlap. The original is an idiosyncratic left-field labor of love that deserves to be a hit. You know what? That's true for Ariel and Dam, too. --Chris Ziegler
She Wants Revenge
The San Fernando Valley has spawned countless bands, but few have celebrated their other-side-of-the-hill pride with the cinematic craft that She Wants Revenge summoned for last year's album, Valleyheart (even having "Valley Girl" actress Deborah Foreman star in the video for the U2-ish "Must Be the One"). That makes what are being billed as the darkwave duo's final L.A. shows (following an "indefinite hiatus" announcement in July) all the more poignant. SWR's marriage of numb new wave and bass-heavy post-punk to deceptively butt-shaking beats on their android-sexy 2006 debut Perfect Kiss has been much mimicked but seldom bettered. Though never recapturing that album's commercial clout, She Wants' two subsequent releases grew increasingly intriguing and eclectic, while Warfield's sinewy presence and visceral, brooding stagecraft shames posturing pretenders. Also Saturday. --Paul Rogers
Saturday, October 6
Eagle Rock Music Fest
Eagle Rock's entry into the world of neighborhood music festivals always turns out to be particularly adorable. It's got that community street-fair feel everybody wants on a nice balmy Saturday afternoon while pushing their stroller down what's basically Main Street U.S.A., even though it's really Colorado Boulevard. And it's got a comprehensively diverse overview of local music from northwest L.A., balancing such Low End Theory stalwarts as Thundercat and Daedelus with Zevon/Westerberg rockers The Henry Clay People, Latin soul-fun stormers The Boogaloo Assassins and an all-day Stones Throw Records stage, bouncing from roots reggae band The Lions to post-punk wildman Vex Ruffin and polymath label head Peanut Butter Wolf. A $10 donation gets you in and reveals the other 60-some bands that we didn't have space to mention here. --Chris Ziegler
Sunday, October 7
Laura Marling might be young, but the 22-year-old English singer-guitarist is very much a part of a long tradition of folk singers whose music sounds curiously timeless and unaffected by ephemeral pop trends. And yet there's nothing fussy or dustily academic about her songs. Tracks like "Sophia," from her 2011 album, A Creature I Don't Know, have breezy pop hooks and are pushed along by a full rock band, but they're also suffused with smart lyrics. "God's work is planned/I stand here with a man that talked to me so candidly, more than I'd choose," Marling says on the uptempo shuffle "The Muse," as elegant strains of piano and violin wrap around her. "My lips once rouged/I feel again the blues of longing, ever longing, to be confused." On this "working holiday tour," the restless singer flies solo, keeping things simple and stripped down. --Falling James
Angel City Jazz Festival
Promoter Rocco Somazzi's Angel City Jazz Festival returns for its fifth year, with events scheduled both this weekend and next. The festival's signature event is Sunday's show at Hollywood's John Anson Ford Amphitheatre. The evening opens with drummer Peter Erskine's New Trio, including nephew/bassist Damian Erskine and pianist Vardan Ovsepian. Next up is bassist Mark Dresser's Quintet, followed by the highly regarded young trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire (a USC grad who's now joined the faculty). Akinmusire also will guest with the evening's closing band, led by saxophonist Archie Shepp, who's making his first L.A. appearance in more than 20 years. Shepp's free-jazz explorations are respected enough to earn him collaborations with the likes of John Coltrane, Horace Parlan and Cecil Taylor. --Tom Meek
For details about these shows and more live music happening in the city this week, check out our Concert Calendar.
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