fbpx

From electro rockers Orgy and post-punks Gauche to DJ Mustard and Seattle garage rockers the Murder City Devils, here are 12 of the best music shows in Los Angeles this week.

fri 8/9

Orgy; Credit: MichellexStar Photography

Orgy (MichellexStar Photography)

Orgy 

THE WHISKY A GO GO 

It was 24 years ago that Orgy formed right here in Los Angeles. It was the mid-1990s, and nu-metal was the hip new thing for lovers of music on the heavier end of the spectrum. Simultaneously, industrial-tinged metal bands with a penchant for the experimental, such as Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails and Fear Factory, were at their commercial zenith. Orgy, led by Jay Gordon, married those two things together seamlessly and consequently found themselves signed to Korn’s Elementree Records. The lineup has changed massively since then, with only Gordon still there (the rest are in Julien-K), but the band still puts on a great live show. BI-AS, Dark Entries, Soldiers of Solace, Forrest Hills and No Aspiring Newbies also play. —Brett Callwood

Gauche, Trap Girl

BOOTLEG THEATER

Gauche are a most unusual band. With members based in Washington, D.C., and Providence, Rhode Island, they stir up post-punk laced with provocative lyrics on their full-length debut, A People’s History of Gauche (Merge Records). Such frantic and funky tracks as “Surveilled Society” and “Cycles” are rooted in herky-jerky rhythms paired with flat vocal chanting. Jason P. Barnett’s angular guitar riffs wiggle alongside Adrienne CN Berry’s saxophone punctuations. At times, Gauche invoke the inventive post-punk rhythms of The Slits and The Raincoats, mixed with a little Mo-Dettes pop and layered with Bush Tetras–style declamations. (A more modern reference point might be L.A.’s French Vanilla, who share some of the same influences.) Openers Trap Girl transmute their own sonic and social subversions into a more overtly furious form of hardcore punk. —Falling James

 

Eilen Jewell (Joanna Chattman)

McCABE’S GUITAR SHOP

Although Eilen Jewell has made a name for herself as an incisive songwriter in various Americana styles, her 2017 album, Down Hearted Blues, was a side trip into the songs of other performers. She returns to her own music on her new record, Gypsy (Signature Sounds), a set of folk idylls, country ballads and roots-rock rambles. Despite the album’s unfortunate title (“Gypsy” is considered an outdated and stereotypical term to describe the Romani people), such laidback reveries as “Miles to Go” make for satisfying, easygoing contrasts with uptempo country-rock numbers like “You Cared Enough to Lie.” She stands up for working women and people of color on the jaunty sing-along anthem “79 Cents (The Meow Song)” and proudly declares that “people call me left-wing swine.” —Falling James

sat 8/10

Alice Bag; Credit: Greg Velasquez

Alice Bag (Greg Velasquez)

Alice Bag 

THE HI-HAT

Former Bags leader Alice Bag seems to be enjoying a new lease of life of late; her recent material has been awesome, and she’s inspiring the youth all over again with her valuable, unrelenting activism. In March, she released her second solo album, Blueprint, three years after her self-titled solo debut. “I think, once I figured out that I could call on friends to record an album, that really changed things for me,” Bag told us recently, and that tracks; Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna and Bratmobile’s Alison Wolfe, two women clearly influenced and inspired by Bag, guested on the new album, and it’s a gem. That said, it’s in the live environment where Bag really excels. Linda Linda and Midnite Snaxxx also play. —Brett Callwood

Pixx (Steve Gullick)

Pixx

THE MOROCCAN LOUNGE 

“Maturity is just a myth,” Hannah Rodgers opines as Pixx on “Andean Condor,” from her new album, Small Mercies. Pixx takes on the role of a soaring bird and tries to find her place in the world even as she archly observes, “Mature males tend to be at the top of the pecking order.” What follows is an unfolding series of varying musical settings. She rages on “Bitch” amid stormy grunge power chords before jetting along with the sleek, supersonic new-wave propulsion of “Disgrace.” “We drive straight through an avalanche,” Pixx confides on the enigmatic track “Peanuts Grow Underground.” Elsewhere, she stirs up more mystery when she reveals, “I feel ugly as a Californian girl who has lost all control… I’m Mary Magdalene, just waiting to be stoned.” Plus, the artful, whimsical pop of Rosie Tucker. —Falling James

sun 8/11

Moaning, Traps PS

THE SMELL

As the multitude of Democrat presidential candidates jostle for position and attention before next year’s election, supporters of Bernie Sanders are already raising money for his latest campaign with grassroots benefits such as this show at the Smell. L.A. trio Moaning top the bill with their convulsions of sound and color on such songs as “Misheard” and the surging, exhilarating passages of “Artificial.” Fellow local trio Traps PS’ songs are less dreamy and are powered instead by an urgency and frenetic drive on their recent album, New Chants. These dark and divisive times require more than the vague hopes and wispy escapism perpetrated by more lightweight groups, and Traps PS’ cutting, slashing and dour fusillades are fittingly heavy and serious state-of-the-union announcements that burn through the haze with a searing clarity. Plus, Kuromi, Prissy Whip, and The Chonks. —Falling James

mon 8/12

(B Wade)

Mustard 

NOVO

“Mustard on the beat ho!” DJ Mustard is no longer just a DJ, he’s a label-owner, tastemaker, and one of the most well-respected producers in the rap game. Hailing from South Central Los Angeles, the Grammy Award–winning celebrity is known for igniting this new West Coast sound, unleashing nothing but bangers for his ever-growing fanbase. If you remember YG’s “My N****a” and Tyga’s “Rack City,” you already know his ability to turn a function upside down. Fast forward to 2019, he unleashes his new album Perfect 10, with a standout verse from the late Nipsey Hussle. While his past shows have come with the disclaimer “Mustard & Friends,” this time, it’s “You Never Know.” The surprise factor is appreciated! —Shirley Ju 

tue 8/13

Murder City Devils (Dana Yavin)

Murder City Devils 

THE TERAGRAM

Seattle garage rockers the Murder City Devils have been around for 23 years now, though they did take a five year hiatus in the mid-2000s. Weirdly, they released the quite excellent Thelema EP immediately before splitting in 2001, but they were back in 2006. Mind you, it took until 2014 before they released the first new material, The White Ghost has Blood on its Hands Again, and that remains their most recent release. But damn, do these guys ever shred live. Spencer Moody remains one of the most watchable frontmen in punk. Hopefully there will be a new record soon, but for now those oldies still sound great. The Intelligence also play. —Brett Callwood

wed 8/14

Black Fire Sessions 

THE BROAD

Arguably the most important series of performances in a venue in Los Angeles on 2019, the Black Fire Sessions present tonight’s soundtrack to accompany and honor the exhibition “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963-1983.” The entire Broad gallery space sets the stage for this visionary series, featuring multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton in a duet with harpist Jacqueline Kerrod in the lobby; singing cellist Kelsey Lu gracing Oculus Hall; and Jimetta Rose singing a capella before working alongside a trio to evolve her musical manifestations. Not to be outdone, red-hot orator Beans presents his own inimitable style of narrative and commentary, while Maurice Harris intervenes throughout the gallery with both urgency and intimacy. Also, if you want to experience these performances in a more illuminating vein, try listening from the third floor. You won’t regret it. —David Cotner

thu 8/15

Steve Earle & the Dukes

THE TROUBADOUR

Steve Earle is the greatest living country artist, period. Yeah, Willie Nelson and his fans might have something to say about that, and that’s OK, but we’re right about this. His studio output has been remarkably consistent, right up to this year’s Guy, a tribute to folk-country singer/songwriter Guy Clark. When Earle puts out a new record, you know it’s going to be worth checking out (unlike many other legacy country artists). And of course, the guy is a proud liberal — a country artist with a conscience. It’s so refreshing to hear a pro-choice country artist speak out against capital punishment. He’s performing on Wednesday and Thursday at the Troubadour, and The Mastersons also play. —Brett Callwood

Dave Evans 

THE WHISKY A GO GO

The eternal argument regarding who is the better AC/DC singer usually involves Bon Scott and Brian Johnson. Very rarely does original vocalist Dave Evans show up in those discussions, and that’s probably just as well. The Welsh-born singer was with the Australian rockers between their inception in November 1973 and September ’74. At that point, Angus and Malcolm Young chucked him out because they didn’t like his glam rock style, and roadie Bon Scott was promoted. Evans went on to sing with glam band Rabbit, before disappearing until the early 2000s when he went the solo route. His set list includes AC/DC tunes that he didn’t record (“TNT,” “Highway to Hell,” “Let There Be Rock”) so he’s milking that 10-month AC/DC stint. But then who wouldn’t? We Are the Black Things, Kimmy Swagg & the Lipsixx, White Boy and the Average Rat Band, Jimmy Richardson and If I Fall also play. —Brett Callwood

Echo Park Rising

VARIOUS ECHO PARK VENUES

Echo Park Rising always feels like a nonstop dream about walking through a series of interconnected shops, clubs, bars and restaurants, with each new passageway and hideaway revealing a previously undiscovered musical treasure. On Thursday, you might find yourself in Spacedust, where your head will be sent spinning around the galaxy by the energetic indie rock of Billy Changer, or you could wind up down the street at American Barbershop, drawn into the tempestuous punk rock of Turbulent Hearts. Friday’s highlights range from the beguiling garage-pop of Veronica Bianqui and newly reconfigured glam-rockers Miss Jupiter to the propulsive punk psychedelia of The Paranoyds. Saturday encompasses the witchy imprecations of Nora Keyes, the return of SadGirl, Egrets on Ergot’s confrontational savagery and Claire McKeown’s Beatles homage, Honey Child’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Sunday features the L.A.-premiere screening of Boy Howdy: The Story of Creem Magazine. Also Friday through Sunday, August 16-18; for more information, visit epr.la. —Falling James

LA Weekly