From percussion-heavy locals Kidi Band and ‘billy outlaws Three Bad Jacks to funk-rockers Fishbone and intelli-punks Potty Mouth, here are 12 of the best music shows in Los Angeles this week.

fri 1/10

Kidi Band, Jolie Holland


With three percussionists and one guitarist, Kidi Band are an unusual local group. All four musicians also sing, giving the songs on their 2016 album, Gimme Gimme, a mesmerizing variety of sonic textures that are woven together cleverly. Tracks range from the disarming folk-pop intimacy of “Babies” to the percussively arty and bluesy vocal collage “Extra Expiration.” The aptly titled “Fever Driver” is layered with acoustic guitar over a curiously compelling rhythmic vocal push, whereas “Rooftops” is a stark pop ballad spiked with flurries of guitar. Kidi Band celebrate the release of a new single on a bill with enchanting folk-pop vocalist Jolie Holland. The Houston native twined her lilting voice together with her former Be Good Tanyas bandmate Samantha Parton’s on their 2017 collaboration, Wildflower Blues, a collection of low-key, rootsy ballads that are elevated by the duo’s dreamy harmonies. —Falling James

Three Bad Jacks


Following a successful performance a couple of months ago at the SoCal Hoedown alongside similarly minded ’billy bands such as the Nekromantix and Koffin Kats, Woodland Hills mob Three Bad Jacks will be strutting their stuff in a local bar — a setting that one suspects they’re more than comfortable in. According to their Facebook bio, “One of Los Angeles’ hardest working bands — and biggest club draws — Three Bad Jacks have been pounding it out, non-stop, since the late 20th century.” That admirable work ethic has seen them earn and retain an enviable fanbase, and recent album Pictures and Memories From Home is a banger. You know what you’re getting — twangy bass, old rock & roll riffs, leather and slick hair, and some hootin’ and hollerin’ from frontman Elvis Suissa. —Brett Callwood

sat 1/11

Bella Novela (Wade Hammond)

Bella Novela 


Long Beach power rockers Bella Novela have been active since 2007, blending the big tunes of ABBA with the pomp of Queen and the epic metal of Iron Maiden. 2019 saw the release of their fourth album, Incinerate, and back in April singer Jackie Laws told us that, “I feel that with this album in particular, there’s a lot of anger and rage behind it and a lot of stuff that’s going on in the nation right now. As female musicians, and among women in general, we’re able to channel a lot of those societal feelings into this album. I think that really helps give us a vision and a goal to write to.” That’s exactly what they did. Enjoy that rage in their hometown this week. —Brett Callwood

Wayne Kramer (Jeff Brinn)

Gates of the West


The Gates of the West tribute show at the Roxy brings together a motley assortment of musicians celebrating the 40th anniversary of the U.S. release of The Clash’s London Calling album. The romantic 1979 tune “Gates of the West,” sung by guitarist Mick Jones about the band’s excitement about arriving in New York City, wasn’t on London Calling, but it foreshadowed The Clash’s evolution from a relentlessly frenetic punk band into a more sonically diverse and pop-minded group. The tribute features MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer, who was given a shout-out by Jones in The Clash’s 1978 B-side “Jail Guitar Doors,” an homage to guitar heroes who have gotten in trouble with the law. The lineup also includes less-compelling figures such as Butch Walker, Jakob Dylan and Duff McKagan in lieu of the notable local punk legends who might give this show some real verve and danger. —Falling James

Jessica Gerhardt (Veronica Crawford)

Femme-Fronted Fest


Headlining night one of the Femme-Fronted Fest at Highland Park’s ever-awesome Hi-Hat is Jessica Gerhardt, in her words a ukulele–playing, singing and songwriting Catholic feminist, who also claims that the mermaid is her spirit animal. The indie pop artist’s influences include St. Vincent, Fiona Apple, Florence + the Machine and the Talking Heads and, if recent single “Morning Moon” is anything to go by, she wears her heart on her sleeve and allows her voice to soar. Also on this bill is Cassandra Violet, Brianna Ibarra and Haleigh Bowers, while Fascinoma, Katie Jo, Astyn Turr and No No Nightshade perform on the Sunday. —Brett Callwood

sun 1/12

The Obsessed (Susie Constantino)

The Obsessed 


Maryland band The Obsessed, led by the inimitable Wino, were playing stoner/doom metal before the genre had a name. Not quite as early as Black Sabbath, but this band formed in 1976 as Warhorse and changed their name to The Obsessed four years later. Kinda weirdly, they put out a series of demos before finally releasing their self-titled debut album in 1990. That worked out in their favor though; the stoner boom, led by bands such as Kyuss, fully embraced them. The most recent album, Sacred, came in 2017, though the band still kicks ass live. Hard, heavy and single-minded, Alex’s floor will be shaking. Nick Oliveri’s Mondo Generator also play, and Drainage open. —Brett Callwood

Fishbone at the Novo; Credit: Levan TK

Fishbone (Levan TK)



As part of 20th-anniversary shows at Alex’s Bar this weekend, the LBC club hosts Fishbone in an afternoon show. The funk-punk-ska-soul insurrectionists have always been a dazzling, energetic force of nature, and leaders Angelo Moore and John Norwood Fisher have kept the L.A. band thriving through numerous lineup and style changes. In their early days, Fishbone pumped up ska and funk rhythms with a punk-rock drive, but over the years they’ve also expanded their sound with forays into soul-music dreaminess and hard-rock fury. Fishbone are billed with local ska-reggae combo The Delirans at the Sunday matinee, while SoCal ska veterans Hepcat headline the first two nights of the Alex’s Bar anniversary on Friday and Saturday (arrive early on Saturday to catch openers Cutty Flam, a charmingly strange garage-roots-pop local band). —Falling James

mon 1/13

Maesa Pullman


The local “dream-town mountain siren” Maesa Pullman continues her free Monday-night residency in January at DTLA’s intimate Love Song bar. “I don’t need new eyes to see,” she intones solemnly and slowly on her new single “Death of the Machine.” Her big voice fills the enigmatic song’s empty spaces with a warmth and charisma that chases away the darkness. On earlier releases, such as “Whoa Honey,” Pullman draws from the blues to create a shadowy, torridly dramatic atmosphere that’s sparked by her powerful vocals. The acoustic ballad “Again Again” is a comparatively restrained acoustic ballad that showcases the more intimate and vulnerable side of the singer. These singles over the past two years build on the promise and potential of Pullman’s early single “Bells” and 2013 EP, Whippoorwill, a set of rootsy, rustic interludes. —Falling James

tue 1/14

Odetta Hartman, Lucy Arnell


Odetta Hartman’s recent album, Old Rockhounds Never Die, sounds at first like a roots-rock exercise in nostalgia, as she drawls her way through countrified folk and blues tunes adorned with violin and banjo. But the New York singer has a lot more on her mind than merely mimicking the past, and she infuses charming tracks like “You You” with indie-rock arrangements crowned with her beguiling vocals. “Widow’s Peak” begins as a dusty, banjo-driven idyll with Hartman’s confessional singing, but it soon shifts into a hazy-dreamy mélange of acoustic and electronic instrumentation that’s unexpectedly strange and eerily arty. She’s billed at Resident with Lucy Arnell, a local singer from New York who disarms as both a solo performer and as the leader of a band. “The Check (The End of It All)” is a typically atypical grunge-psychedelic interlude from her intriguing upcoming album, Makeshift Starfish. —Falling James

Luxxury (Patrick Fraser)


Moroccan Lounge

Los Angeles’ Luxxury says that he makes dance music for grownups. “Raw, funky bass-lines plucked with grown-man finesse,” it says on his Facebook page. “A mastery of space disco native only to those who lived through the late ’70s/early ’80s. Dust in the glitter that vibrates in the space between string stabs, bongo slaps, and guitar jabs — while the steady pulse and astral effects feel beamed in from a more cybernetic future Los Angeles.” That’s what the man born Blake Robin does, and by god he does it well. He’s remixed everyone from Kiss to Madonna, and his most recent release was last year’s “It’s Not Funny,” and yet the man previously known as Baron von Luxxury is only just getting started. —Brett Callwood

wed 1/15

Potty Mouth (Nazrin Massaro)

Potty Mouth, Broken Baby


“I only need a little room to fight,” Amber Bollinger declares proudly over a rumble of hard-rock guitars on Broken Baby’s recent single “My Head’s a Television.” Bollinger and co-songwriter Alex Dezen previously revealed promising hints of strangeness on their 2018 self-titled debut album, which ranges from the funky post-punk collisions of “Year of the Fat Man” to the coolly grooving “Pass the Acetone.” “No, Patrick Swayze, you ain’t gettin’ no ride,” Bollinger insists amid the rubbery bass lines of “It’s My Show!” The L.A. duo should provide a lively counterpoint to headliners Potty Mouth, the local punk-grunge band whose 2019 full-length release, SNAFU, was one of the best albums of the year. Potty Mouth’s new single, “Favorite Food,” marries surging power chords with singer Abby Weems’ melodic romantic entreaties. —Falling James

thu 1/16


The Observatory

The annual event celebrating the life of Pantera/Damageplan guitarist Dimebag Darrell will return to The Observatory in Santa Ana, and this one might be the biggest yet. It’s been 15 years since we lost the prodigious six-stringer, and it looks like his girlfriend Rita Haney and friend Dave Grohl are going to go big. Last year, Grohl was joined by Slipknot’s Corey Taylor, Anthrax’s Scott Ian and Charlie Benante, Slayer’s Dave Lombardo and Pantera’s Rex Brown for an all-star jam, and we’re expecting names of a similar stature again. But of course, the most important thing is that we don’t forget Dime, the victim of a crazed gunman. Keep listening to his music, and fuck guns. —Brett Callwood

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