Mayer Hawthorne
Mayer Hawthorne
Photo courtesy of Mayer Hawthorne

The Best Concerts to See in L.A. This Weekend

Mayer Hawthorne
Mayer Hawthorne
Photo courtesy of Mayer Hawthorne

Friday, January 31

Mayer Hawthorne
Pop-soul artisan Mayer Hawthorne is a tougher dude than he gets credit for. Well, OK, his song "Crime" on recent album Where Does This Door Go seems to be about the kind of low-key excuse-me-sir police situation that happens when your house party gets just a little too loud, which admittedly isn't much as far as criminal credentials go. But he was out there singing and playing (with fingerless gloves) in the cold and blowing snow at the NHL Winter Classic on New Year's Day, and he's been a relentlessly ambitious - even fearless - producer and musician since his house-party days in his native Detroit. Now Hawthorne is confident, rested and ready (like his fellow Pharrell collaborators Daft Punk) to make the most perfect makeout music the future permits. You know what they say: That which breaks your heart only makes you stronger. Quadron and Gavin Turek open. - Chris Ziegler

See also: Mayer Hawthorne Talked to Kanye West for Five Hours. It Changed His Outlook

Dessy Di Lauro
Dessy Di Lauro defines her songs as "feathered frowhawk futuristic art deco centric harlem renaissance hep music." While that's quite a mouthful, the phrase aptly encapsulates the seamless way in which the local pop/R&B singer ties together vastly different eras. A native of Montreal, Di Lauro has performed with various Cirque du Soleil productions, but she really created her own musical niche with her co-writer husband, Ric'key Pageot, on her most recent album, This Is ... Neo-Ragtime. You've never heard the venerable "Sweet Georgia Brown" quite like this, as Di Lauro's honeyed vocals wind sinuously through a merry jumble of speakeasy-era stride piano and sophisticatedly modern R&B arrangements. Her original songs are smart, sassy and sensual, layered with funky horn retorts and jazzy harmonies. - Falling James

Robert DeLong
If anyone could be excused for wanting to take some time off, it would be 27-year-old Robert DeLong. Nearly a year after unleashing his debut album, Just Movement, the multi-instrumentalist has taken his show on the road, spending the better part of 2013 performing at some of the biggest festivals in the world while hearing his blend of EDM and alt-rock played across various radio formats. After a quick, two-week Western run, which saw him play Sundance and travel from Vancouver down the West Coast, this show will be DeLong's last before a much-deserved break. Don't be surprised if his already electric show gets turned up a notch in front of his adopted-hometown crowd. - Daniel Kohn

See also: Robert DeLong: Deep Thoughts on the Dance Floor

Saturday, February 1

Andreilien, Gladkill, Russ Liquid, Sugarpill, ChrisB., GoldRush, jOBOT
The "interactive environments" created by L.A.-based events company the Do LaB are a sight and sound experience guaranteed, as The Twilight Zone's Rod Serling used to say, to blow your mind. Their Headtron Takeover DJ event features Heyoka, who reportedly was abducted by a virus from outer space, surgically enhanced on the planet Marklar and returned to Earth in improved form and with a new moniker: Andreilien. His glitchy fractal landscapes and sub-bass to the 10th power will bang your skull and raise your consciousness. Gladkill likes the big-bang clubby beatscapes; Russ Liquid brings the future-vintage vibe choicely laced with anthemic melodies and wicked polyrhythmic beats. Sugarpill provides a West Coast crunk style stirred in third-ear harmony, and local production wiz ChrisB. offers a savory line in ye olde dark soundscape-y vibe, no skimping on the 808. - John Payne

See also: The Do Lab Built a Massive SoCal EDM Community
Yuck / GRMLN
London-based five-piece outfit Yuck hit the ground running with their 2011 self-titled debut, but when their lead singer left in early 2013 to pursue other projects, the group had some adjusting to do. After releasing their second album, Glow & Behold, Yuck debuted their new lineup at last year's CMJ to mixed reviews, as fans and critics were concerned with the drastic difference in vocals. Despite some softened edges, Yuck are still heading down the distorted-indie-pop lane with confidence. With the help of producer Chris Coady (Islands, Beach House), Yuck substitute gentle melodies for fuzz-coated rhythms, shifting their direction from raw '90s rock to soothing '90s shoegaze. While comparisons can still be drawn to Sonic Youth and Yo La Tengo, easy-listening tracks such as "Middle Sea" and "Losing My Breath" sound like something meant to soundtrack an episode of Girls. Up-and-coming pop-rocker GRMLN will kick off the night with his dreamy rock tunes. - Britt Witt

Sunday, February 2

Frankie Rose
Frankie Rose was an early member of such beloved bands as Vivian Girls, Crystal Stilts and Dum Dum Girls, and the Brooklyn singer reveals some of the same garage-pop instincts on her solo albums Interstellar and 2013's Herein Wild. But whereas those groups often sound fuzzier, more reverbed out and '60s retro, Rose's guitars exude an ethereal, post-punk allure on songs such as "Night Swim," which lives up to its title with watery, haunting vocals flecked by those lighthouse guitars. "Gospel/Grace" is crowned with more starry-eyed guitar and cooled down by Rose's sweetly soothing vocals. - Falling James

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