This Week's Best Concerts, in Handy Playlist Form

Van Halen: see FridayEXPAND
Van Halen: see Friday
Photo by Kevin Winter

It's another great week for live music in Los Angeles, with the return of punk/emo festival Taste of Chaos, an eclectic lineup of Latin music at the second annual Supersonico festival, two nights of the legendary Van Halen at the Hollywood Bowl, and one of the fall's best double bills, the Black Lips and Ariel Pink, at Teragram Ballroom. Follow L.A. Weekly Music on Spotify for all our concert calendar playlists, and read below for more details on this week's concerts and festivals.

Friday, Oct. 2

Van Halen
Hollywood Bowl
Whether it’s cycling through singers or intra-band squabbles playing out in the press, the mighty Van Halen knows how to remain in the news. But even with Eddie Van Halen making some incendiary comments regarding former bassist Michael Anthony and current singer David Lee Roth, this tour has gone as smoothly as a Van Halen tour possibly could. Mixing in the mega-hits (“Runnin’ With the Devil,” “Jump”) with rarities that, in some cases, haven’t been played live in 30 years (“Drop Dead Legs,” “Light Up the Sky”), the set delicately teeters on the line between catering to diehards and casual fans. These Hollywood Bowl shows mark the end of the band’s current tour, and like anything Van Halen–related, the future is unclear, so check out the Pasadena natives while you still have the chance. Also Sunday, Oct. 4. — Daniel Kohn

Michael Mayer
Lot 613

Michael Mayer is one of Germany’s best-known DJs, an influential label boss and a respected producer. His imprint Kompakt (co-owned by Wolfgang Voigt and Jürgen Paape) is famous in its own right, especially for its DJ mix series Total; crucially, it also oversees distribution for dozens of smaller independent dance labels. Mayer’s own mix series, Immer, brought him worldwide recognition, and the wintry first volume in particular (released in 2002) makes a great entry point for exploring underground house and techno. For those already in the know, Mayer’s latest is a pulsating, bass-heavy techno jam called “The Stickler” from Time Is Running, a split 12-inch with Kompakt alum Reinhard Voigt’s “The Buddy” on the B-side. — Matt Miner

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Saturday, Oct. 3

Stanton Warriors
Exchange L.A.

For nearly two decades, DJ/producers Mark Yardley and Dominic Butler have carved their own path through U.K. dance music, forging a distinctive sound pitched somewhere between garage and breakbeat, with touches of deep house, electro and drum ’n’ bass. With the rise of younger garage-inspired acts such as Disclosure, everything old is new again, so the Bristol duo’s trademark, bass-heavy approach sounds fresher than it has in years. On their latest album, the just-released Rebel Bass, Stanton Warriors tweak that signature sound just enough to keep things interesting, in part with the help of collaborators including Night Bass boss AC Slater and Tony Quattro of New York’s Trouble & Bass crew. Jason Bentley and Wolfie round out what should be an evening of jittery beats and lots (and lots and lots) of bass. — Andy Hermann

Supersonico
Hollywood Palladium

In some ways, the idea behind the Supersonico festival is a bit absurd. Most of the performers have little in common beyond the fact that they usually sing in Spanish. On the other hand, many of these sonically disparate artists have played with one another over the years, leading to a cross-pollination of influences that inevitably makes their music more eclectic and full of surprises. These musicians are all over the map, both stylistically and geographically. Colombia’s Aterciopelados specializes in sinuously engrossing folk-rock riffs, whereas Mexico’s Kinky plugs in for glittery dance-rock workouts. L.A. band The Bronx mix punk and traditional rhythms in their alter-ego project, Mariachi El Bronx, while Mexico City singer-songwriter Ximena Sariñana coos subtly provocative pop songs. Spain’s Mala Rodríguez chants darkly engrossing rap scenarios, and Tijuana’s Bostich + Fussible crash the dance floor with fusions of Norteño and techno. — Falling James

Taste of Chaos
San Manuel Amphitheater

There’s no doubt about it — pop-punk is making a comeback. With new events cropping up in 2015 such as Taking Back Tuesday, the Echoplex’s monthly emo night, there’s never been a better time to blast some Blink-182, lose yourself in the (sometimes embarrassing) nostalgia of the early 2000s and let your emo colors (or lack thereof) show. Need more proof? Taste of Chaos is putting on its first festival in five years, with a lineup that’s pretty irresistible to any emo kid, past or present. The Used, Jimmy Eat World, Dashboard Confessional, Thrice and more take the stage, and Mark Hoppus will be there to DJ a set. It’s been a long wait, but we gotta say, it’s good to have the “Winter Warped Tour” back. — Artemis Thomas-Hansard

Ariel Pink: see Monday
Ariel Pink: see Monday
Photo by Sasha Eisenman

Sunday, Oct. 4

Joe Jackson
Palace Theatre

After classical training as a multi-instrumentalist at the Royal Academy of Music, Joe Jackson dove into punk and new wave with the release of Look Sharp! in 1979. He would forever be labeled as “angry” — which was all the rage at the time, along with those white shoes — but his career has spanned more musical genres than Pink Martini can shake a marimba stick at. This week, with plenty of other thrilling emotions, he comes out with Fast Forward, his first album of original songs in seven years. It’s a collection of 16 tracks recorded in four cities: New York, New Orleans, Berlin and Amsterdam, recalling his suave Night and Day era. It’s marvelous, theatrical, stirring. For this tour, he’s “my own opening act” solo at the piano, followed by a full band set digging into a career’s worth of songs. Also Monday, Oct. 5. — Libby Molyneaux

Monday, Oct. 5

Black Lips, Ariel Pink
Teragram Ballroom

Ariel Pink is the reigning prince of trash pop, riding a wave of critical adulation following the release of his latest album, Pom Pom. Songs like “Plastic Raincoats in the Pig Parade” combine Daniel Johnston’s childlike whimsy with Syd Barrett’s opaque freakiness. The local songwriter switches almost impatiently from one style to another, crooning a new-wave enigma (“Lipstick”) and intoning a shadowy goth opus (“Not Enough Violence”) before doubling back into schizophrenic dub-psychedelia (“Dinosaur Carebears”). Pink’s tour-mates, The Black Lips, also prefer to cram all manner of random influences into their blender. Their 2014 album, Underneath the Rainbow, continues the Atlanta band’s evolution from punk anarchists into a group that finds the connections between garage rock, pure pop, roots rock and full-blown psychedelia. Also Tuesday, Oct. 6, and at the Observatory, Wednesday., Oct. 7. — Falling James

Tuesday, Oct. 6

The Aquadolls
Whisky A Go-Go

The Aquadolls are Burger Records fellow travelers who do a lot with a little. They’re a very capable bass-drums–two-guitar foursome led by singer-guitarist Melissa Brooks, and on their 2013 full-length Stoked on You, they touch on everything that makes Southern California rock & roll so permanently great. Goof-offs like “I Like Fruit” (not to be confused with a Descendents song) and “Tweaker Kidz” are good ol’ teenage punkery, but The Aquadolls also do zoned-out, Paisley Underground–style pop on “So High” and turn in an uncharacteristically frenzied garage-rock freakout on “Cool Cat.” But if they’ve got a signature, it’s gotta be “Our Love Will Always Remain,” a ’60s-gone-’70s-gone-’90s power-pop heartbreaker reaching out a hand toward the sublime. When the beach craze is over and the tide goes out, it’ll be the songs like this that remain. — Chris Ziegler

Rudimental
The Fonda Theatre

Rudimental is not a household name stateside the way Disclosure is, but it should be. The foursome’s 2013 album, Home, exploded Rudimental’s career in their native U.K., and their new album, We the Generation, picks up right where Home left off. The group’s identifying characteristic is a melding of dance styles, filtering drum ’n’ bass, house, hip-hop and soul through a pop strainer, seasoning with horns and chants, and spitting out super-sticky singles. On We the Generation, this happens repeatedly: the roiling “Love Ain’t Just a Word,” on which the group’s protégé Anne-Marie taunts Dizzee Rascal; the teasing “Rumour Mill,” on which Anne-Marie meets her match in the silver-throated Will Heard; the classic vocal house–meets–postmodern production of “Too Cool,” featuring Ella Eyre. Rudimental shine brightest — and flatten their contemporaries — with their bombastic live show. Also Wednesday, Oct. 7, at the Belasco. — Lily Moayeri

Julia Holter: see Wednesday
Julia Holter: see Wednesday
Photo by Tonje Thilesen

Wednesday, Oct. 7

Beirut, Julia Holter
Hollywood Palladium

Zach Condon brings his shambling little orchestra into this big room for two nights. Although he’s from Albuquerque, Condon often peppers Beirut’s music with strains of Balkan folk influences, which are married occasionally with mariachi horns and other world-music flourishes. On Beirut’s new album, No No No, tracks range from upbeat piano-pop tunes such as “Fener” and the sleepy soul of “Pacheco” to the orchestrated balladry of “So Allowed” and the swirling horns of the loping title track. Julia Holter’s art-rock chansons have an ethereally dreamy quality leavened with a chamber-pop formality on mysteriously enchanting passages like “Lucette Stranded on the Island,” from the local singer-songwriter’s just-released album, Have You in My Wilderness. Also Thursday, Oct. 8. — Falling James

Thursday, Oct. 8

Garbage
Greek Theatre

Has it already been 20 years since Garbage released their self-titled debut album? What’s impressive is that such sullenly glittery anthems as “Only Happy When It Rains” and “Supervixen” still feel thrilling, long after most grunge-era groups ended up sounding dated. On the reunited quartet’s new tour, they’re performing the album in its entirety for the first time. Although it would be nice to hear some new songs — it’s been three years since Garbage released their entrancing, out-of-the-blue comeback album, Not Your Kind of People — the debut record should sound impressive live, bringing new attention to such bittersweet yet intoxicating confections as “Stupid Girl,” with Steve Marker’s languid guitar hook slithering hypnotically around singer Shirley Manson’s hushed taunts and drummer-producer Butch Vig (Nirvana, L7) watery snare shots. — Falling James

Hercules & Love Affair
The Regent Theater

Ever-clever dance unit Hercules & Love Affair revolve around DJ-songwriter Andrew Butler, an eclectic mix man who began DJing at a leather bar in his hometown of Denver. Setting up shop in NYC in the early ’00s, Butler found himself happily immersed in club culture. He soon began creating wickedly wry electro-disco and house stompers for the DFA label, such as 2008’s now-classic “Blind,” featuring vocals from Antony Hegarty. Butler’s aesthetic has roamed far and wide in surprising ways, from a fondness for sweet New Romantic to extremely rough house and techno, and he and his ever-rotating cast of collaborators — such as the excellent singer-songwriter John Grant, in the lineup for 2014’s The Feast of the Broken Heart — have produced a continually provocative spin on dance music. — John Payne


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