Twin Cities concert calendar: May 8-14

JAY BOLLER | Updated 5/7/2014

YG, the Both, Baths, Flaming Groovies and more!

Aimee Mann and Ted Leo are the Both.



9 p.m. • First Avenue • 18-plus • $22-$25

With his mug shot from a burglary arrest for cover art (see above), straight-outta-Compton rapper YG’s debut album, “My Krazy Life,” really isn’t all that crazy. The 24-year-old budding star doles out hard, Ice Cube-style street tales alongside calls for women and weed as salvation. Young Jeezy was the album’s executive producer and guests on the single “My Nigga,” which made it to No. 19 on Billboard’s Hot 100. The young gangsta is performing with DJ Mustard, who helmed most of the record. Chris Riemenschneider


Youngblood Brass Band

9 p.m. • Triple Rock • 18-plus • $10-$12

Nearly a decade since its members started playing together at Oregon (Wis.) High School, near Madison, the Youngblood Brass Band is starting to blow up. A 10-member, hip-hop-infused adaptation of a funked-up New Orleans brass band — there’s even a full-time rapper — the Youngbloods issued last year’s album, “Pax Volumi,” via England’s Tru Thoughts label (also Alice Russell’s reps) and have gained NPR support and festival gigs. Electro-funky local rapper Botzy opens. C.R.


Jessica Lea Mayfield

9 p.m. • Turf Club • $13-$15

Jessica Lea Mayfield is an ingénue no longer. Since we last heard from the critically acclaimed singer-songwriter, she married her bassist and underwent a musical metamorphosis. While the 24-year-old Ohioan’s previous two albums — both produced by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys — fit somewhere on the Americana-roots-country spectrum, her third full-length, April’s “Make My Head Sing,” goes in a gritty, guitar-driven grunge-rock direction. The precocious, heartsick girl the indie music world fell for is no more. Dylan LeBlanc opens. Read an interview with Mayfield at Erica Rivera




8 p.m. • Varsity Theater • all ages • $20-$30

Bands such as the Fray and Maroon 5 feel put on Earth to underscore emotional scenes on “Grey’s Anatomy.” Augustana, the long-running vehicle of frontman Dan Layus, is in the same schmaltzy, soft-rocking boat. The San Diego group’s 2005 hit “Boston” was a TV licensing dream, and April’s “Life Imitating Life,” their fourth LP, is another attempt at radio balladry gold. Think late-era U2; think early Coldplay; but, for the love of God, don’t overthink it. The hyper-sincere Layus is on a stripped-down acoustic tour. Opening are Twin Forks — the new act from Chris “Dashboard Confessional” Carrabba — and Nashville’s Lauren Shera.Jay Boller


Jessy Lanza

9 p.m. • 7th Street Entry • 18-plus • $10-$12

Armed with a handful of analog synths inherited from her late father, Ontario’s Lanza and hometown pal/Junior Boy Jeremy Greenspan co-wrote Lanza’s sultry debut, “Pull My Hair Back.” The piano teacher-turned-touring artist’s minimalistic electro-pop caught the ear of Greenspan’s bud and U.K. dubstep pioneer Kode9, who released the album last fall on his Hyperdub label (Burial, Cooly G, the late DJ Rashad). Steeping ’90s R&B in warmly lo-fi house and disco beats, Lanza’s debut has garnered critical praise, earning comparisons to everyone from Aaliyah to the xx’s Romy Madley Croft. Teen opens. Michael Rietmulder


Kelley Hunt

7 p.m. • Dakota Jazz Club • $25

Kansas City piano-and-vocal powerhouse Hunt is returning to her favorite Minneapolis haunt to preview “The Beautiful Bones,” her album that drops May 20. There are lots of long-winded, gospel-tinged and Southern-saturated piano pieces with echoes of Etta James, Mavis Staples and other classic soul stirrers. The standouts include the rollicking, horn-seasoned boogie “When Love Is at the Wheel,” the gospel/blues swing tune “I’ve Got a Good Feeling” and the pop-soul, Bonnie Raitt-evoking relationship-solver “Simplify.” You can sense that all this new material will be even more effective when Hunt cuts loose live. Jon Bream



The Both

9 p.m. • Fine Line • 18-plus • $20

“Bringing doom-folk and recession-rock together at last.” That’s how Ted Leo characterized his new duo The Both with Aimee Mann at the Dakota last year, when the two seemingly unlikely musical compatriots offered Twin Cities fans a preview of their new collaborative album. Leo wasn’t entirely kidding, it turns out. Issued last month, their eponymous debut finds the punky Indiana rocker and the dour Boston folk-popper combining their songwriterly strengths, whether it’s having fun in “Milwaukee” — inspired by the city’s Fonzie statue — or getting serious about the end of the world in “Hummingbird.” Their stage banter is especially a hoot. Opener Nick Diamonds is the solo moniker of Nicholas Thorborn, frontman of Montreal band Islands. Chris Riemenschneider



9 p.m. • Triple Rock • 18-plus • $13-$15

It’s probably hard to keep the faith in the throes of a gnarly E. coli bout. So we’re guessing the man upstairs would give L.A. beat scene graduate Will Wiesenfield a pass for cooing “Where is God when you hate him most?” on the warbled opener to his superb sophomore album, “Obsidian,” which was delayed by the pesky pathogen. But the experimental electro-pop maestro is back on his feet and (more importantly) off the toilet and making his celestial, dance-savvy tracks. This week the Anticon-inked songwriter dropped his “Ocean Death” follow-up EP. Young Feathers and P. Morris open. Michael Rietmulder


Tech N9ne

8 p.m. • Myth • all ages • $35-$45

Kanasa City rapper Tech N9ne has spent a prolific career garnering cult obsession as a weirdo. It’s undeniable that the 42-year-old has always astounded with his “mad flow,” but more infamous than his sinister rhymes is the worship bestowed on him by Faygo-spraying, horrorcore superfans known as Juggalos. That, and a tendency to provoke female audience members into flashing him during a song about — you guessed it — boobs. But don’t let the depravity of that characterization dehumanize him. At the end of the day, Tech N9ne (born Aaron Dontez Yates) is really just an entrepreneur with a Jim Morrison obsession like the rest of us. Freedie Gibbs and Krizz Kaliko open. Sally Hedberg


Tina & the B-Sides

9 p.m. • First Avenue • 18-plus • $20

Tina Schlieske hasn’t performed at First Avenue since 2005. Tina and the B-Sides, the band that made her locally famous, hasn’t graced the First Ave stage since 1999. That’s when the Twin Cities rockers broke up because of burnout. They’re back with their first album in 15 years, “Barricade.” The band sounds a little more Americana and a little twangier but Tina still infuses everything with the impassioned rock’n’ soul singing that sets her apart from other Minnesota barroom singers. Opening is ex-B-Sides guitarist and current co-producer Patrik Tanner and the Faraway Men. Read an interview with Tina at Jon Bream


Scott Laurent

11 p.m. Sat. & 9:30 p.m. Sun. • Icehouse • $10

“I’m dying here in Nashville,” Laurent howls on his new album. Whether or not he means that literally, the Springsteen-esque rocker clearly still considers the Twin Cities home: He’s returning for two album release parties this weekend. An omnipresent name in the City Pages bar ads for a decade-plus, Laurent left for Nashville in 2008 and has bided his time co-writing with other singers and playing songwriter round robins at the Bluebird Cafe. His album “Love Don’t Let Me Down” offers a hint of Music Row’s polished twang but maintains the old BoDeans-style heartland-rock flavor. He will perform the record in its entirety Saturday with Pennyroyal, and then he plays a stripped songwriterly set Sunday with Taj Raj. C.R.



The Milk Carton Kids

7 & 9 p.m. • Dakota Jazz Club • $20

If the good fight is carrying on the tradition of folk music in the digital age, then the Milk Carton Kids are fighting it. Invoking the aesthetic and demeanor of eminent folk duos like Simon & Garfunkel, Kenneth Pattengale and Joey Ryan thrive upon understated flat-picking and resonant harmonies. It’s quiet, contemplative music that — while not really reinventing the wheel — serves its purpose well, as exemplified on last year’s “The Ash & Clay” LP. The California twosome also keeps much of its music available for free online, which warrants at least two thumbs-up emojis. Brian Wright opens.Sally Hedberg


The Flaming Groovies

8:30 p.m. • Turf Club • $25

After the Sonics and Roky Erickson shows earlier this year, 2014 is turning out to be the year to see elusive garage-rock/punk pioneers. The latest is the Flaming Groovies, a San Francisco band that started in 1965 but made its mark a decade later with the album “Shake Some Action” and a fabled trek to England with the Ramones, which purportedly sparked the U.K. punk scene. Frontman Cyril Jordan and ’70s-era member Chris Wilson have reunited for their first EP together in 30 years, “End of the World.” Adding to the rare treat, local vets the Mighty Mofos open. Chris Riemenschneider


Eric Hutchinson

8 p.m. • Varsity Theater • sold out

Unstoppably popular in the Twin Cities, New York popster Hutchinson is still trying to regain the national chart and radio momentum of the tune “Rock and Roll” in 2009. His latest single, “Tell the World,” is the theme song for the new NBC sitcom “Growing Up Fisher.” It’s taken from Hutchinson’s fifth album, “Pure Fiction,” a well-crafted collection that evokes Ryan Tedder, Paul McCartney, Billy Joel and other mainstream radio stars. Saints of Valory open. Jon Bream


Nickel Creek

7:30 p.m. • State Theatre • $49.50

After announcing an indefinite hiatus in 2007, adventurous bluegrass trio Nickel Creek is back with a new album, “A Dotted Line,” and a tour to celebrate their 25th anniversary. All three members have impressed on their own, with singer/mandolinist Chris Thile winning a 2012 MacArthur genius grant and making special music with the Punch Brothers, Edgar Meyer and Yo-Yo Ma as well as three solo albums. Singer/fiddler Sara Watkins has distinguished herself with two solo discs and lots of performing with Garrison Keillor on “A Prairie Home Companion.” Guitarist/singer Sean Watkins has played in the groups Fiction Family and WPA and worked as a duo with sister Sara. Nickel Creek’s new album showcases their ever-expanding palette, embracing Beatle-y pop, edgy indie-rock, a moody instrumental with fancy picking, pretty, sad balladry and acoustic rock with dissonant vocal harmonies. Secret Sisters open. J.B.



9 p.m. • Mill City Nights • 18-plus • $25-$28

After their 1990 breakup, Louisville’s unlikely post-rock pioneers released their now-seminal “Spiderland,” which made them posthumous cult favorites, paving the way for Mogwai, Sigur Rós, et al. Slint’s members went on to perform with Tortoise, Zwan and the For Carnation before reuniting in 2005 and touring sporadically since. Last year, the slow-burning rockers headlined famed U.K. festival All Tomorrow’s Parties for the second time and the quartet’s currently promoting a “Spiderland” reissue, remastered by Bob Weston, whose Shellac mate Steve Albini produced Slint’s 1986 debut. Wrekmeister Harmonies open. Michael Rietmulder



Matt Pond PA

8:30 p.m. • Turf Club • $13-$15

With two wars raging abroad and Ashlee Simpson lip-syncing at home, chill/emotionally vulnerable vibes were in dire supply in 2004. Thankfully, Matt Pond PA entered the scene with “Emblems,” the fifth in what would turn out to be a ceaseless procession of dulcet indie-pop offerings. Relive all the emo-y chamber-pop excitement of “Emblems” tonight, as the melatonin-core singer will play it in its entirety on this 10th anniversary tour. Be sure to keep an eye on the bass drumhead: Following much fanfare in 2012, it remains unclear whether Pond actually dropped the “PA” from his stage name. Keep him honest, Turf Club. The Lighthouse and the Whaler opens along with locals the Farewell Circuit. Jay Boller



Gary Louris

7 p.m. • Hopkins Center for the Arts • $22

While he’s preparing to launch another Jayhawks reunion outing later this year timed to the reissues of the band’s three 1997-2003 albums, Louris has been shining on his own over the past year playing intimate solo gigs. Set lists at these shows have included songs from all eras of the Jayhawks as well as Golden Smog nuggets, covers, tracks from 2008’s “Vagabonds” and more from another solo record in the works. Chris Riemenschneider


Jane Monheit

7 & 9 p.m. • Dakota Jazz Club • $30-$40

Splendiferous New York jazz thrush Monheit is returning with a themed program — “Hello Bluebird: Celebrating the Jazz of Judy Garland.” She promises to avoid the drama and concentrate on the joy of Judy’s jazz. The set list will include “You Gotta Have Me Go With You,” “Johnny One Note” and, of course, “Over the Rainbow” and “Hello Bluebird.” Wonder if performing in the state of Garland’s birth will impact Monheit. Jon Bream




9 p.m. • 7th Street Entry • 18-plus • $13-$15

Until “fjord rock” becomes a thing, music writers will likely keep hitting these Kyuss-indebted Swedes with the desert metal tag. Topography aside, the bluesy and sludgy trio is definitely more kindred spirits with Josh Homme (who praised the band in Truckfighters doc “Fuzzomentary”) than Sweden’s hallmark death metal scene. This year Truckfighters released their fourth album, “Universe,” predictably but satisfyingly tumbling fuzzed-out stoner riffs and singer/bassist Oskar “Mr. Ozo” Cedermalm’s howl with chunky grooves. The Twin Cities’ own melodic sludgesters Bloodnstuff and Red Desert open. Michael Rietmulder