Los Angeles is a hotbed of live music, and L.A. Weekly is here to help navigate this embarrassment of riches. From the haunting sounds of Marissa Nadler to the sunshine rock of Bob Mould and Kikagaku Moyo's musical mélange, here are the 12 best music shows in L.A. this week!
Marissa Nadler possesses such an entrancing, beautifully melancholic voice that it's no wonder so many of her musical peers want to work with her. The Massachusetts native's 2018 album, For My Crimes, is a languid collection of folk-rock musings and such celestially enchanting dream-pop ballads as "Blue Vapor" and the poignant Byrds homage "I Can't Listen to Gene Clark Anymore." On her new single "Poison," Nadler murmurs somberly under austere folds of restrained electric guitar before The Velvet Underground's John Cale chimes in with consoling harmonies. Their duet is incredibly haunting. Nadler stirs up some dramatic Roy Orbison–style grandeur on another new single, "If We Make It Through the Summer." Meanwhile, she layers her ethereal singing within "VII," an atmospheric, 11-minute new-music soundscape from With Voices by Dutch composer Rutger Zuydervelt's Machinefabriek. —Falling James
Bob Mould Band
Former Hüsker Dü and Sugar mainman Bob Mould has just released his 13th solo studio album, Sunshine Rock, and there are reports that it's up there with his best work. The title doesn't reflect any feelings Mould has toward the insanely turbulent state of the world at present but rather is tied to his own personal peace of mind after spending a lot of time in his new adopted home of Berlin. And naturally, the album, and the title track, isn't "sunshine rock" in some overly exuberant, pop-joy way but rather a typical feeling of tempered happiness, with a mildly sarcastic edge. It's Bob Mould, after all. Recent live performances have been superb, and the addition of this excellent new material can only up the wow factor. —Brett Callwood
Waxahatchee, Bonny Doon
PAPPY & HARRIET'S PIONEERTOWN PALACE
"We sit on a crowded ship," Katie Crutchfield confides on "Singer's No Star," a contemplative love song from Waxahatchee's Great Thunder EP. "It's not the ending that's the tragic part/If you'd get off my shoulders and sit beside me, we would both be fine." Such pastoral folk-rock ballads as "Chapel of Pines" and "You're Welcome" are laid-back contrasts to the more rocking grunge-pop songs from the Alabama singer's 2017 album, Out in the Storm, which featured such fuzzed-out anthems as "Brass Beam" and "Never Been Wrong." On her current tour, Crutchfield is backed by Detroit indie rockers Bonny Doon, who also will perform their own set. Bonny Doon's 2018 record, Longwave, is an assortment of low-key, rootsy rambles and gentle folk rock. —Falling James
G.X. Juppiter-Larsen's 60th Birthday Party
Sixty years is the diamond anniversary — which is really fitting because at G.X. Jupitter-Larsen's 60th Birthday Party, you'll experience some of the hardest and most brilliant minds working in experimental music in Los Angeles today. Jupitter-Larsen, founder of noise supernovas The Haters and sometime Best Electronic Experimental Artist for this here L.A. Weekly, continually inhabits the outer edges of experience and/or deafness with his art and sonics. It's a night that marks his ceaseless presence as a living intersection of dada, surrealism and noise, fêted and celebrated as he is tonight by friends and fellow wizards, including but not limited to the dark noise of Allegory Chapel Ltd., the live flexidisc cut-up collages of AMK, the noisescape anxieties of Japanese ethnomusicologist Banetoriko, the experiments of Crank Sturgeon, and a rare appearance by Helicopter Records' John Wiese. —David Cotner
THE REGENT THEATER
Even though modern technology makes accessing music easier than ever, the physical distance between the United States and New Zealand still makes it difficult for Kiwi musicians to travel often to Los Angeles. Like their similarly reclusive — at least on these shores — peers The Clean, The Chills are another brilliant band with a two-word name from Dunedin, New Zealand. Both groups are cited as among the earliest and most influential punk bands from that part of the world, but they are just as likely to branch out into jangling power pop and folk. The Chills' 1986 anthology Kaleidoscope World is a good place to catch up with the extensive back history of singer-guitarist Martin Phillipps. The band's new album, Snow Bound, ranges from sunny indie pop ("Time to Atone") to more melodramatic and majestic alt-rock ("Lord of All I Survey"). —Falling James
New Orleans sludge metal band Eyehategod (or EHG) have been metaphorically riffing through the swamps since 1988, though they're hardly prolific: They've put out only five studio albums, and 2014's self-titled effort was the first since 2000's Confederacy of Ruined Lives. Their slow work rate is appropriate, considering the monolithic, mega-heavy nature of their Sabbath/Kyuss-esque stoner rock. There's something about the metal down there in Louisiana, though. Bands such as Crowbar, Goatwhore and the Phil Anselmo projects Down and Superjoint share a vibe of playing instruments in a sea of molasses. It's way more thrilling live than it sounds, and there are reports that Eyehategod have a new album due later this year. Reason to celebrate. —Brett Callwood
Canadian alt-blues band Reignwolf is officially a trio but it's clearly the brainchild of Jordan Cook who, at the age of 15, took his band to the Montreux Jazz Festival. Still, there's an air of mystery shrouding the band, which is probably no bad thing. The debut album, Hear Me Out, is due to land on March 1, and there are plenty of tracks to enjoy on their Soundcloud page. "Wanna Don't Wanna," for example, is a gloriously fuzzy, heavy and emotionally raw slab of indie blues that recalls the likes of The White Stripes and Jon Spencer. A bit of The Dirtbombs, too. It'll be fascinating to see how they rate in the live environment. —Brett Callwood
Band of Horses
Seattle's Americana-tinged rock group Band of Horses haven't put out a new studio album since 2016's Why Are You OK, but that's just fine and dandy — five albums in and thye have a ton of great material to pull from. Ben Bridwell has done an amazing job of taking his band out of the dusty clubs and into the consciousness of the mainstream. The music is both authentic and accessible, and the group is frankly superb live. They're a great festival band but they work equally well in clubs and theaters. Out in Santa Ana, they'll put on a killer show. She Returns From War also play. —Brett Callwood
THE REGENT THEATER
Kikagaku Moyo are labeled as a psychedelic band, an open-ended description that, in the Japanese quintet's hands, can encompass a wide variety of styles. On their recent record, Masana Temples, tracks alternate between such '60s garage-rock passages as "Gatherings," which is pumped up with Ryu Kurosawa's sheets of groovy organ, and "Dripping Sun," a funky groove accented with Daoud Popal's nimble streaks of guitar. On the album-opening "Entrance," Kurosawa twists threads of sitar within a swirl of exotic percussion and momentous chords. Singer-guitarist Tomo Katsurada tends to be a subdued and mellow vocalist before drummer Go Kurosawa and the rest of the group step up the intensity with fully flowering hard-rock drive and almost jazzily expressive, free-flowing jamming. Kikagaku Moyo are collectively a trip. —Falling James
One time for real hip-hop. At only 20 years old, Token is touring the world and shutting down shows with his authentic bars, punchlines and storytelling in his lyrics. Hailing from Boston, real name Ben Goldberg was introduced to hip-hop at just 6 years old, and began rapping seven years later at 13. Building his own fan base organically and independently, Token soon became a force to reckon with in the rap game. At the end of last year, he unleashed his fourth project, Between Somewhere, bringing in life experiences and proving his transition into the music industry. In fact, fellow Boston native Mark Wahlberg even called Token "his favorite rapper." —Shirley Ju
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"First of all, there is no God/Because I killed my God," Adia Victoria coolly declares on "Clean," the first song on her new album, Silences. The Nashville singer has been described as a blues stylist but she has far more ambitious things on her mind than just echoing the visions of past blues legends. Victoria is firmly rooted in the here and now, and her provocative lyrics are too bold to stir up easy nostalgia. The new record's title references Tillie Olsen's 1978 book, Silences, which charts the different ways in which working-class writers have to struggle before their art is taken seriously. And while the album is steeped in the blues, Victoria mixes and matches a variety of moods and styles to infuse her songs with pointed messages that decry the sexism and various addictions that still hold women back. —Falling James
WHISKY A GO GO
The story of '80s rockers XYZ isn't your typical one. Patt Fontaine and Terry Ilous grew up in France and moved to Los Angeles in 1986. So there's a little bit of European sophistication about the band. Kinda. Don Dokken produced their self-titled debut in 1989 and it just scraped the lower reaches of the charts. In truth, XYZ never looked like blowing up to Crüe or Poison proportions — they were always unfortunately destined to be Sunset Strip sidenotes. But the truth is, there's a lot of gold in the small print. The band's four albums are all worth a listen and they still rock live (especially on the Strip). Sawduzt also play. —Brett Callwood