From the KIIS-FM Jingle Ball and punk vets the Adolescents to lost band The Monolators and R&B star Raquel Rodriguez, here are 12 of the best music shows in Los Angeles this week.

fri 12/6

camilla cabello 345157

Camila Cabello (Khendra Braswell, iHeartMedia)

KIIS-FM’s Jingle Ball


Like the Harlem Globetrotters, there’s more than one touring lineup of Jingle Ball. Some cities, such as New York, will get Taylor Swift, while others will have to settle for The Jonas Brothers. The version that lands at the Forum features two of the most provocative vocalists in pop music today, Lizzo and Billie Eilish. Lizzo’s 2019 album, Cuz I Love You, is an energetic and feisty blend of pop, R&B and hip-hop spiked with defiant lyrics (“What the fuck are fucking feelings?”). Eilish’s When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, produced and co-written by her brother Finneas O’Connell, is a monumental work that’s much darker and far more subversive than typically escapist mainstream pop. Meanwhile, moments of genuine romantic poignancy occasionally slip free from the generic arrangements and clichéd lyrics holding back Katy Perry’s recent singles “Small Talk” and “Never Really Over.” Other highlights could come from Halsey and Camila Cabello. —Falling James

20190309 the adolescents bandshot 001 841606

The Adolescents (Jason Cook)

The Adolescents 


Simply put, there are very few better SoCal punk anthems than the Adolescents’ “Amoeba.” In fact, that iconic blue-and-red 1981 self-titled debut from which it came is one of the all-time great SoCal punk albums. Amoeba” is such a mad jam that former Adolescent and co-writer Casey Royer has made it a staple of the set with his band D.I. Of course, there’s way more to the Adolescents that this one song — 2018’s Cropduster was their ninth album and the last with fallen comrade Steve Soto. But you can’t keep this great band down, and this Garden Grove gig should be a classic. The Zeros, The Crowd and the Neighborhood Brats also play. —Brett Callwood

sat 12/7

Mount Eerie 


A native of Anacortes, Washington — a small town on an island in the Puget Sound — Phil Elverum is a writer of deeply personal songs about memories, myths, the natural world and the sublime. Formerly releasing his music as the Microphones, Elverum has recorded and performed as Mount Eerie since 2003. After the death of his wife, visual artist and musician Geneviève Castrée, in 2016, Elverum wrote A Crow Looked at Me — as eloquent an expression of loss and grief as any in the popular music canon. Elverum’s latest album is Lost Wisdom pt. 2, which features his frequent collaborator and close friend Julie Doiron, who plays with Elverum tonight. —Matt Miner

Frankie & the Witch Fingers


Frankie & the Witch Fingers’ latest full-length record, Zam, was one of the freakier releases of 2019. While many other bands get stuck in a formalist and retro garage-rock rut, the local quartet open up their sonic range into far more expansive psychedelic territory, mixing hard-rock thunder and jazzy experimentation into their guitar-heavy opuses. The title track is an eight-minute-plus rambling wreck that hurtles along the highway at a punk tempo, but it’s powered with a metallic attack. Other tracks range from the sludgy grunge of “Cobwebs” and the indie-rock drive of “Dark Sorcerer,” which betrays hints of Syd Barrett oddness. Out of the storm of dizzying guitars emerges a relatively straightforward garage-rock curio, the jangling (but still rhythmically insistent) “Purple Velvet.” —Falling James

black flag1 115577

Black Flag (Rob Wallace)

Black Flag 


Greg Ginn is the only current member of Black Flag who was in any of the classic lineups, but current singer Mike Vallely is determined to do the band’s legacy proud. We spoke to Vallely at the start of the current tour, which is about to wind up, and he told us that a great mix of people are coming to see Black Flag in 2019. “There are old school punker types that are just excited that the band is playing again. A few bucket list type people. A lot of skateboarders come out, first because the music intersects with skateboarding, but then a lot of skater types come to support me,” he said. The show at the Observatory in September was unexpectedly excellent, so expect more of the same here. —Brett Callwood

unnamed 14 338713

Illenium (Alexandra Gavillet)



DJ and producer Illenium, also known as Nicholas D. Miller, has won over EDM fans all around the world with his standout original beats and memorable remixes. Beyond the fire records, it’s the emotion and feel-good aura he brings that audiences resonate with. His live shows include a slew of instruments, from keyboards to drum pads and only the greatest illuminating lighting. Most recently, he unleashed his third studio album titled Ascend, via Astralwerks. This project went on to become his first placement on the Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums chart, peaking on the Billboard 200 at #14. Fans can expect him to perform explosive singles “Good Things Fall Apart” featuring Jon Bellion and “Takeaway” with The Chainsmokers. —Shirley Ju

sun 12/8

mike morgan brick wall 637192

Kix (Mike Morgan)



Maryland band Kix was formed in 1977 and would cover tracks by the likes of Zeppelin, Aerosmith and AC/DC, before landing a deal with Atlantic and finding their feet. They’re understandably generally lumped in with the hair metal ’80s crowd — they can often be found on package bills with that sort of act. But Kix was in essence a shit-kicking hard rock band that could really play. Substance came before style, and albums such as the ’81 debut, Cool Kids, and Midnite Dynamite were packed with killer tunes. They didn’t break like Mötley Crüe or Poison, but they retain a respectable following to this day, and they still deliver in the live environment. The Hard Way and the Aviators also play. —Brett Callwood

highonfire jimmyhubbard 428115

High On Fire (Jimmy Hubbard)

High On Fire 


Oakland sludge/stoner/doom metal troupe High On Fire have been creating gloriously monolithic, brutal music since forming in 1998. In fact, they might be the best contemporary metal band to have burst out of the Bay since the glory days of the blossoming thrash scene that brought us Metallica, Exodus, Testament, etc. Last year’s Electric Messiah album, their eighth, was one of the best metal releases of 2018, and it was recently given the stunning picture disc vinyl treatment. Songs such as the title track and “The Witch and the Christ” are particularly intense, and they’ll surely sound huge live. Power Trip, Devil Master and Creeping Death also play. —Brett Callwood

mon 12/9

mann and leo 577330

Aimee Mann & Ted Leo (Courtesy of the artist)

Aimee Mann & Ted Leo


The annual Aimee Mann & Ted Leo Christmas Show at Largo has proved so successful that it’s been expanded to three nights, with two separate sets per night. Mann has long been a sucker for holiday music. She delivered a sly and slinky version of “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” on her 2006 Christmas album, One More Drifter in the Snow, a record that largely favored blue and moody idylls and arrangements in lieu of the usual cloying holiday schmaltz. The Pharmacists’ Ted Leo provided a punk attitude to match Mann’s pop instincts on their 2014 collaboration as The Both, and the combination led to such charming power-pop gems as “Volunteers of America” and “Bedtime Stories.” The duo’s special guests range wildly from the ambitious and challenging rap soundscapes of the lyrically incisive Open Mike Eagle to the soporific easy-listening pop of Lisa Loeb. Also Tuesday-Wednesday, December 10-11. —Falling James

tue 12/10

Cyndi Lauper’s Home for the Holidays


Cyndi Lauper has long demonstrated that she’s more than just a simple new-wave pop singer, delving into the blues, soul and R&B on 2010’s Memphis Blues and plunging into the “Funnel of Love” of classic country with her stylized approach on 2016’s Detour. She has also proved that she has a mighty heart with her ongoing efforts to support gay rights. Lauper’s annual Home for the Holidays revue, a benefit to help LGBTQ homeless kids, is especially stacked this year with an astonishing variety of special guests, who range from such similarly surnamed pop divas as Brandi Carlile and Belinda Carlisle to such unexpected allies as Henry Rollins and an apparently newly enlightened Marilyn Manson. Kesha and King Princess might prove to be more genuinely subversive though, and randy comedian Margaret Cho and the beloved Lily Tomlin find a ray of laughter and light during this often-oppressive holiday season. —Falling James

wed 12/11

monolators 287484

The Monolators (@every_show)

The Monolators


The Monolators have long been one of L.A.’s great lost bands. Led by the husband-and-wife team of singer-guitarist Eli Chartkoff and drummer Mary Chartkoff, the indie-garage tunesmiths have concocted alternately whimsical, silly, heartfelt and beautiful songs that marry the spirit of Jonathan Richman with punk, garage and art rock. The Monolators rarely emerge from their Eastside lair these days, but when they do, it’s always a fantastic spectacle and circus onstage, such as when the group reunited for a momentous, energetic set at Polartropica’s residency at the Bootleg earlier this year. Early classics like the surging pop anthem “Strawberry Roan” fit right in alongside such spectral and Velvets-y passages as “Let’s Be Best Friends in Space,” from The Monolators’ aptly titled collection Ten Years of Tears. —Falling James

thu 12/12

Raquel Rodriguez 


Raquel Rodriguez is a Mexican-American Los Angeles native who sings authentic R&B/soul music, and does it beautifully. She cites Prince, Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Stevie Wonder, Amy Winehouse and Bruno Mars as influences. After all, why not learn from the very best and most popular R&B acts in recent times? According to her online bio, she’s shared a stage with Gwen Stefani and Anderson .Paak, and opened for J. Cole, PJ Morton, Snoop Dogg, Moonchild and Lizzo among others. That’s quite a resume already, and she’s currently working on her full-length debut album. Catch her now while she’s still playing relatively intimate rooms. —Brett Callwood

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.