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

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Mon, Sep 23, 2013 at 3:45 AM

click to enlarge Lorde -- See Tuesday - LORDE PRESS PHOTO
  • Lorde Press Photo
  • Lorde -- See Tuesday

Don't forget to check our constantly-updated Los Angeles Concert Calendar

Monday, September 23

Little Boots

TROUBADOUR

With her sophomore LP, Nocturnes, Brit electro-popper Little Boots (Victoria Hesketh to 'er mates) has yet to recapture the critical acclaim for and commercial success of her 2009 debut, Hands. No bother. Much of LB's charm lies in unpretentiously memorable melodies and straightforward song structures, fleshed out with lighthearted New Wave-y synths and more up-to-the-minute squelchy 'n' throbby low-end lurkings. On Nocturnes, she strips back the production in keeping with these uncluttered sensibilities. The results are a slightly later-night, less sonically saturated take on recent Tegan and Sara territory -- only with, like, a funny accent. --Paul Rogers

Jimmy Angel

VIVA CANTINA

Rock & roll shouter Jimmy Angel is an unforgettable figure. With piercing eyes of icy blue, hair a thick shock of store-bought, jet-black synthetic and a quivering bandstand stance much akin to the kinetic strut of James 'Soul Brother No. 1" Brown, the 78-year-old Angel burns with a high-voltage dynamism that is downright otherworldly. Personally groomed as a 1960s teen idol by mafia don Joe Colombo (a great arrangement until Colombo was gunned down, during a live televised event, in 1971), Angel's weird heritage and unlimited talent always combine with electrifying effect. His tenor pipes are yet striking and powerful, and his songwriting still tumbles forth with a rich, natural grasp on the rock & roll lexicon. Yes, he is an old-school big beat freak, and yes, he is slightly mad, and yes, it is a beauteous thing to behold. --Jonny Whiteside

Tuesday, September 24

Lorde

FONDA THEATRE

Exactly one week before she turns 17 on Nov. 7, Ella Yelich-O'Connor, better known by her stage name Lorde, will release Pure Heroine. This debut full-length album has been so rabidly frothed over that the usual "highly anticipated" tag seems almost insulting. But behind the hype and those dark waves of curls is a hard-working, forward-thinking old soul who just happened to start writing music at age 12 and get discovered at her school talent show a year later. With her EP, The Love Club, and its inescapable radio hit, "Royals," Lorde's soulful, brassy vocals and insightful lyrics enlarged the spotlight targeting her in her native New Zealand to include writeups and record deals around the world. And yet the teenager, who released the EP for free so that young listeners like her could get it without a credit card, is still far removed from the "Cristal, Maybach, diamonds on your timepiece" lifestyle she sings about. How refreshing. --Kelsey Whipple

Joan of Arc

THE SATELLITE

Testimonium Songs, the new album by Chicago indie-rock veterans Joan of Arc, was written to accompany an experimental theater company's interpretation of the works of Objectivist poet Charles Reznikoff. Sound obscure? It is! The LP finds Joan of Arc's ever-aspiring main man Tim Kinsella and mates slamming a half-composed/half-spontaneous web of songs both keenly mellifluous and bracingly angular. (In the original performance, the music accompanies modern dance, theater and poetry based on courtroom transcripts of testimony in late-19th century U.S. court cases.) It is indeed boundary-pushing stuff that tonight is made heavier still by guest polyrhythmatist John Herndon, of the band Tortoise. --John Payne

Wednesday, September 25

Susanne Sundfør, Body Parts

BOOTLEG THEATER

"Apocalypse, death, love and snow" is how Norwegian singer Susanne Sundfør terms the core concerns of her chillingly evocative pop, a blue-hued, electronicized art that conjures clichés about snow-covered peaks and lonely treks along the fjords. The small pleasures Sundfør finds in this ice world are all told by her crystalline voice, which is engaging as it is chilling. But of course. Altogether it is a beautifully haunting sound that earned Sundfør's acclaimed album, The Silicon Veil, No. 1 status on the Norwegian charts in 2012. Openers Body Parts are an L.A.-based experimental pop set whose October debut release, Fire Dream, offers an adroitly textured blend of electro-dance kick and dramatic pop balladry. Sundfør also performs at Bardot on Sept. 23. --John Payne

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