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fri 4/20

Lemonade

THE ECHO

Members of the same Internet-enabled semiscene that has given us Tanlines, Delorean and Teengirl Fantasy, these former San Franciscans (now living in New York) live up to their name, pumping out sweet-and-sour indie-disco jams that refresh on contact. Lemonade have an album due out in June from the ultrahip Matador subsidiary True Panther Sounds; it's called Diver and closes with a white-soul stunner in the form of “Softkiss.” (Not for nothing does frontman Callan Clendenin quote Bobby Brown's “Every Little Step” in the song's chorus.) Expect a preview of some of that new material tonight, along with a good deal of closed-eye bliss-seeking. With Bachelorette, otherwise known as New Zealand–based avant-pop purveyor Annabel Alpers. —Mikael Wood

The Rhythm Shakers

WEBER'S

The Rhythm Shakers are Wild Records' specialty crowd-control device, able to beat an audience into happy submission with about four cracks on the snare drum. They're an absolutely captivating rock & roll/rhythm & blues combo led by Marlene Perez, who's got a Wanda Jackson grrrrrrrrowl and Wanda Jackson style, plus Cordell Jackson chops when she deems it necessary to unholster her guitar. (She's got official label gunslinger Andrew Himmler and his deadly Telecaster at her side, too.) Their recent contribution to Wild's Live at Weber's album — perhaps you yourself are on it too, screaming? — is pure attitude, pure rhythm and pure guitar tone, which means this is gonna go tearing through your bloodstream like white lightning. You'd think they fell off a Chess 45 around 1956, but instead they're from right this second. When they do a song called “Shake Your Hips,” it's less a suggestion than a command. —Chris Ziegler

Lorraine Feather

VITELLO'S

In 2010 Lorraine Feather received a Grammy nomination for her album Ages, which drew widespread critical and popular acclaim. Feather's latest effort is Tales From the Unusual, material from which she debuts tonight. Feather's background is a unique one. She's the daughter of Jane and Leonard Feather — her mother was a big band singer, her father a legendary jazz critic and writer. She was named after her godmother, Billie Holiday, but began using her middle name, Lorraine, as a teenager. Feather has released a total of 12 albums, and has received seven Emmy nominations for her work as a lyricist and in television. Her backing band for the release event includes Grammy-winning pianist Russell Ferrante of Yellowjackets and highly regarded L.A. studio guitarist Grant Geissman. —Tom Meek

Also playing:

SEUN KUTI & EGYPT 80 at Royce Hall (See GoLA); SCOTT KINSEY GROUP at Blue Whale; MARILYN SCOTT at the Baked Potato; SAUL HERNANDEZ at Troubadour.

 

sat 4/21

Johnny Thunders Tribute Night

THE SATELLITE

John Genzale died far too young, in 1991 at the age of 38 in a New Orleans hotel room under a set of mysterious and, quite frankly, suspicious circumstances that remain unexplained to this day. Ironically, the late Johnny Thunders' music is more popular now than it was when he co-founded the New York Dolls in the 1970s and carried on with a solo career in the '80s. His direct influence can be easily heard in the Sex Pistols, Guns N' Roses, Aerosmith and many, many others, but none of his imitators can truly replicate Thunders' plaintively lovelorn vocals and rudely savage guitar style. Tonight, several of his peers and acolytes will attempt to invoke his “Born to Lose” ethos, including Blondie's Frank Infante and Clem Burke and the Waldos' Joey Pinter. Members of such local hard-rock bands as the Crazy Squeeze, Barrio Tiger and the Neurotics also will be on hand to give an Angeleno spin to Thunders' classic anthems of New York love and desperation. —Falling James

Bettye LaVette

ROYCE HALL

At 66, Detroit-raised soul legend Bettye LaVette seems to be at the start of a brilliant career. Chalk it up to an unusual biography, which found the gifted singer recording her first charting single at the tender age of 16, touring with a fresh-faced Otis Redding at 19 and later playing in the James Brown Revue — essentially walking backwards down the road to riches. In fact, she didn't break beyond the States until 2005, when, teaming up with producer Joe Henry, she dropped I've Got My Own Hell to Raise, featuring songs written by Fiona Apple, Aimee Mann, Sinéad O'Connor and Lucinda Williams. While a 2007 LP saw her singing standards backed by Drive-By Truckers, 2010's Interpretations includes songs by the Stones, the Beatles and the Who, redone to emphasize the blues they'd emulated in the first place. —Chris Martins

Kate McGarry

BLUE WHALE

For three years straight, DownBeat Magazine has labeled the Grammy-nominated vocalist a “Rising Star,” so by now she should be somewhere around Mars. Hopefully she'll get back in time for her show at the Whale, for it would be a shame for anyone to miss her evocative lyricism, superb control and ample vocal and emotive range. Her voice would be iconic in any genre, and she has crossed over with unique interpretations of Björk, Dylan and Peter Gabriel; but her latest album, Girl Talk, is an homage to the great ladies of jazz as well as an anthem for feminist equality in our time. McGarry brings her NYC band in tow, featuring star pianist/organist Gary Versace, whose playing puts him in another galaxy far, far away. —Gary Fukushima

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Also playing:

ATTACK ATTACK! at House of Blues; GRANT LEE PHILLIPS at McCabe's; THE HURRICANES at Viva Cantina; CHUCK MANNING at Vibrato; MARK Z. STEVENS TRIO at Desert Rose; ANOUSHKA SHANKAR at Luckman Fine Arts Complex.

 

sun 4/22

The Touré-Raichel Collective

THE ECHOPLEX

Like many Malian musicians, such as the nomadic Tuareg band Tinariwen, Vieux Farka Touré plays his guitar in an unusual style, pulling the notes off the frets in a slippery way that both sparkles and mesmerizes. After a chance meeting with the world-music pianist Idan Raichel in a German airport, Touré flew to Israel for an improvisational jam that turned out so well, it was just released on CD as The Tel Aviv Session. The record shows off the strengths of each musician — Touré's facility for launching exotic incantations that slowly build momentum and Raichel's classically formed dexterity on the keys — while also revealing previously unknown sides of their music. Although Touré usually performs his whirling, swirling riffs electrically, the duo's expansive jams were largely recorded with acoustic instrumentation, giving a newfound and intimate glimpse of the way he scratches those mysterious chords together. —Falling James

Third Grade Teacher

REDWOOD BAR & GRILL

At one point in time, back in the late '90s, Third Grade Teacher looked like they were about to break out of the local underground rock scene at any moment. They slammed out hard, convulsive grunge epics like “School Boy,” but could segue right into a pretty pop tune like “Cinnamon” without blinking an eye. On top of that, lead singer Sabrina Stevenson — a real-life third-grade teacher — used her acting background to pull off some convincing onstage freakouts and virtual self-exorcisms, causing some new fans to wonder if she was having a literal nervous breakdown or was suffering from the memory of an extremely traumatic past. TGT also got a lot of attention because Stevenson and bassist Laura Smith like to wear schoolgirl uniforms, but the band's real talent was in writing catchy songs, with guitarist David Guerrero cobbling together some inventive riffs. After several years of lying low and raising families, the band plays a rare afternoon set. —Falling James

Also playing:

CHARLES AZNAVOUR at Gibson Amphitheatre.

 

mon 4/23

Jeff Mangum

ORPHEUM

He's been called the J.D. Salinger of indie rock, and with good reason. In 1996, Jeff Mangum, with his band Neutral Milk Hotel, wrote and released one of the most highly regarded albums in the '90s underground canon. Aeroplane Over the Sea was a remarkably ambitious record that wedded the raw emotions of grunge, to the lo-fi jangle of the day, to a deep psychedelia dating back decades, to a strange story about the ghost of Anne Frank. And just as that record's unlikely pop charm began to shine, its architect disappeared. As it turned out, he was tormented by the Holocaust victim's specter and a handful of other internal demons. Mangum has only resurfaced recently, playing a few fan favorites here and there, but eschewing a proper tour until now. Coachella has coaxed him out of whatever haunted closet he's dwelling in these days, so don't squander this opportunity. —Chris Martins

LP

Bardot

Her name is LP, but tonight she's celebrating the release of an EP, Into the Wild: Live at EastWest Studios, a five-song disc that inaugurates this local singer-songwriter's deal with Warner Bros. Records. Born Laura Pergolizzi, LP is no newcomer to the music biz; she's put out previous albums and has co-written tunes for Rihanna (yay!) and Heidi Montag (yikes!). This current push, though, has more muscle behind it, which is presumably how LP's Jeff Buckley–ish “Into the Wild” found its way into a recent Citi commercial. She shares this School Night! bill with Sweet Hearts, a new L.A. duo featuring Priscilla Ahn and Charlie Wadhams, and Brooklyn's indie-rocking We Are Augustines. Also: DJ sets by Brendan Canning (of Broken Social Scene) and Tummy Touch founder Tim “Love” Lee. —Mikael Wood

Bill Morrison/Jóhann Jóhannsson

REDCAT

Filmmaker Bill Morrison specializes in artful reconstructions of ancient footage that's usually in a bad state of decay. The mere look of his films is captivating, with a dark, damp atmosphere that will be enhanced at tonight's L.A. premiere of The Miners' Hymns by the addition of Icelandic electronic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson's achingly gorgeous and slightly disturbing score. Piling and sculpting black-and-white footage from the early 1900s through the massive 1984 strikes, the film is an ode to the lost world of the Durham coalfields in northeastern England, honoring the political battles and bloody hard graft of the Durham coal miners, along with a look at the cultural milieu of the workers, including the city's tradition of coal miner brass bands and the Miners' Gala. A selection of Morrison's earlier shorts, including Outerborough (2005) and Release (2010), also will be screened, and Morrison will be in attendance. —John Payne

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Also playing:

JOHN CARPENTER, JOHNNY O'DON-NELL, BEN REDDELL at Los Globos; JAZZTEC at Vitello's; JACQUES LESURE JAM at Nola's; ERIC ERLANDSON at Largo.

 

tue 4/24

Hype Williams

THE ECHOPLEX

How the enigmatic duo known as Hype Williams gets away with hijacking the name of a rap music video king is unclear. All the same, their music couldn't be further off from those high-gloss “pimp reflections” that the Roots parodied so perfectly in the video for their 1996 single “What They Do.” Hype Williams, the band, makes the kind of hazy, abstract, sampledelic psychedelia that underground rock heads gobble up by the cassette-full, spangling their post-everything lo-fi pop with pretty vocals courtesy of singer Inga Copeland. We hear this isn't her real name. We also hear they've sold albums at Brixton markets via USB sticks jammed into MacBooks, and that producer Dean Blunt is an ex-boxer. Whether the pair hails from Lisbon, Berlin, London or Estonia (each have been posited), it's quite clear Hype Williams aren't from here — which is reason enough to catch 'em on this rare outing. —Chris Martins

Johnny Hallyday

ORPHEUM

The Parisian rock star/actor Johnny Hallyday — often touted as the French answer to Elvis Presley — seemingly left the building for good when he announced his retirement from live performances in 2007. Yet the lure of the limelight is a powerful drug, and Hallyday is already back to performing following a cancer scare in 2009. It's a good thing, too, since tonight's concert will be his first appearance in Los Angeles. With gently rocking oldies like “Retiens la Nuit,” he comes off at times more like a Gallic Ricky Nelson than Elvis, and there are certainly some schlocky moments scattered among the pop hits of his long career, but there's also a reassuring warmth and presence to Hallyday's vocals amid all the kitsch. —Falling James

Also playing:

MICKEY AVALON at Key Club; JOHN DAVERSA SMALL BAND at the Joint.

 

wed 4/25

Enter Shikari

ROXY

Apparently aiming to appeal to every single one of their young Brit peers, Enter Shikari marry metalcore muscle and post-hardcore guitar adventurism to early-hours trance/electronica hedonism and the grimy grooves of dubstep and drum 'n' bass. Oddly, far from devolving into some lowest-common-denominator mush, their music sounds vital, heartfelt and, most of all, inevitable (as in “Why didn't someone do this sooner?”). Third album A Flash Flood of Colour makes militaristic riffs and guttural Middle Earth growls the utterly logical bedfellows of post-Prodigy beats, bouncy dancehall bass lines, Streets-y spoken-word rants and sudden, massive cascades of melody. Both documenting and defying belligerent, chav-era England (ironically, a warehouse full of their CDs and DVDs was torched during last August's London riots), Enter Shikari are a wonderfully free-thinking, one-stop British invasion. —Paul Rogers

Also playing:

BEN KWELLER at El Rey Theatre; BEHEMOTH at House of Blues; MELISSA MORGAN at Areal Restaurant.

 

thu 2/26

E-40

KEY CLUB

He's called Charlie Hustle for his entrepreneurial streak, the Ambassador of the Bay for his commitment to the NorCal rap community and Fonzarelli because he's just that effortlessly cool. He invented the “izzle” that a certain Dogg bit, and has collaborated with everyone from Tupac to DJ Shadow to Lonely Island to Drake. And though 44 is well into retirement age for many a rapper, E-40 shows no signs of slowing his roll. He dropped three LPs on the very same late-March day this year, wowing fans and critics with both an astounding consistency of quality and his remarkable ability to innovate still after 17 albums. The name of this triptych is The Block Brochure and it finds the Ballatician as smart and swagged-out as ever, reigning over the streets with an aplomb that many emulate but precious few ever achieve. —Chris Martins

Screaming Females

CENTER FOR THE ARTS, EAGLE ROCK

They're called Screaming Females, sure, and they can scream when they need to, sure. But what's really gonna heal the sick and raise the dead here is singer Marissa Paternoster's guitar — perhaps only Greg Sage of the Wipers could also so effortlessly shred within the confines of what one might tentatively describe as a punk band. With able backing from a rhythm section that isn't afraid to follow her off a cliff, Paternoster snaps her songs in half and lets everything inside spill out everywhere, and thus scientifically demonstrates once and for all what Crazy Horse would have sounded like had they rehearsed at 924 Gilman St. An upcoming album with Albini production surely will deliver this fearlessly powerful power-trio into basement rock history. —Chris Ziegler

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Also playing:

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN at L.A. Sports Arena; VETIVER at the Echoplex; DUNES, DAVID SCOTT STONE, PROTECT ME at the Smell; REZ ABASSI & DAVID BINNEY at Blue Whale; ADAM SCHROEDER at Crowne Plaza LAX.

LA Weekly