Los Angeles Concerts

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

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Fri, Aug 30, 2013 at 3:45 AM

click to enlarge Scout Niblett -- See Friday - PHOTO COURTESY OF DRAG CITY
  • Photo courtesy of Drag City
  • Scout Niblett -- See Friday

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Friday, August 30

Danzig, Doyle, Cherie Currie


If there's anyone who has a right to strip-mine his own past, it's Glenn Danzig. Although there's a group of ex-sidemen and stand-ins currently touring under the name The Misfits, the early-'80s New Jersey punk band is most often associated with G.D., who not only was the lead singer but also wrote all of their songs. Joined tonight by Misfits guitarist Doyle, Danzig will reprise many of The Misfits' gory, ancient ditties, but he's also celebrating the 25th anniversary of his eponymous metal group. Even at this stage in the game, one hopes that the singer will find a satisfying middle ground between the Damned-style derivations of The Misfits and the often-bombastic, Morrisonian bellowing of Danzig. Adding allure to the bill is a rare large-venue appearance by former Runaways singer Cherie Currie. Although her solo career has been spotty and anything but prolific, Currie deserves credit for smashing rock's glass ceiling in the 1970s, when women musicians were rarely taken seriously on classic-rock radio. --Falling James

See also: Glenn Danzig's Amazing Art Collection



Silver Lake is still a musical neighborhood, but in many ways the party moved elsewhere more than 10 years ago when rising rents and gentrification transformed the formerly bohemian, ethnically diverse enclave into an upscale and homogenous inland version of Brentwood. The quintessential Silver Lake band of the good ol' days was Popdefect, who got their start in Seattle in the early '80s but became ubiquitous fixtures at local dives and backyard parties throughout the '90s. They even starred in their own film, Live With This: Adrift in America -- one of rock's best road movies. Singer-guitarist Al Anderson was like a less careerist (but no less drunken) version of Paul Westerberg, crooning smart, cynical lyrics over a punchy combination of pop, alt-rock, garage and punk, which was powered by the unusually energetic (and just as drunken) rhythm section of drummer Nick Scott (who now plays with Swords of Fatima) and bassist Charlie Hutchinson. Tonight, the nearly mythical trio becomes real one more time at this one-off reunion. --Falling James

Scout Niblett


Emma Niblett seems to have legitimate beefs -- with the boring status quo, with mates she wants and can't have and, worst of all, with those pesky mental demons plaguing her vulnerable self. The evidence is in the lyrics for Niblett (who performs under the name Scout), and she is thus prone to explosion. There's palpable tension when she sings sometimes and howls more often, slashes/chip-chops her guitar as she disrupts lyrical trains that are already rather cryptic -- except when they're face-slashingly direct. She slices herself further open on her recent album It's Up to Emma, on which the tough-hided Niblett gleans new insights about all of this self-loathing and fear stuff. She's drily witty, too; take for example the wonderfully petty resentments of "Gun," a tale of romantic rejection and its consequences: "I think I'm going to buy me a gun/A nice little silver one." Watch out for this one. --John Payne

Don't Knock the Rock Festival


Let's recap some of the reasons you're so happy you live in Los Angeles -- convenient tar pits, an endless supply of quality used vinyl and, of course, the Don't Knock the Rock film festival, which convenes every year to present lovingly hand-picked documentaries on every aspect of music. Co-founder Allison Anders has an expert eye and expert ear, too, and DKTR's roster of biopics, fandom, nerdery and spirit-of-rock & roll features always includes something you'll never see anywhere else. (Or possibly ever again!) It kicks off tonight with an eight-years-in-the-making doc on culty-beyond-cult figure Lawrence Hayward of Felt and a bio on similarly adored Australian visionary Rowland S. Howard. Screenings continue over the weekend with the Stones Throw story Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton, a profile on Memphis wildman Jerry McGill and much more. (Through Sept. 2.) --Chris Ziegler

Saturday, August 31

John Williams and Julie Andrews


The music of John Williams is ubiquitous, but who's complaining? Over a span of several decades, the sheer stylistic variety of his film scores has amazed and awed audiences. While many of us grew up with Williams' epic works for blockbusters including Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and the Harry Potter films, this is the same man who created those kicky scores for Gidget Goes to Rome and Valley of the Dolls! Let's not forget, too, that Williams' theme music graced the 1984, 1988 and 1996 Summer Olympic Games and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. Tonight, Williams leads the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra in renditions of several of his works for film. He is joined by the one and only Julie Andrews, who narrates a tribute to another giant of the film-scoring world, Henry Mancini, along with his daughter, singer Monica Mancini. (Also Friday, Aug. 30.) --John Payne

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