In the mood for groove-oriented pop? Expansive Moroccan instrumentals? Aggressive punk rock? Lively Latin dance? You can choose from all of that, and more this week. Here are 15 concerts to see in the next seven days all around Philadelphia.
Monday 4/1: Jajouka Baraka at Johnny Brenda’s
Bachir and Mustafa Attar of long running experimental outfit Master Musicians of Jajouka joins forces with saxophonist Arrington de Dionyso and drummer Ben Bennett in Jajouka Baraka, an ensemble rooted in Moroccan trance music. They play Johnny Brenda’s tonight for an Ars Nova Presents show that will at once capture the spirit of community and the divine. // 8 p.m., $20, 21+ // TIX + INFO – John Vettese
Wednesday 4/3: Mariah Carey at The Met
Mariah Carey has a formidable legacy as a pop diva, and this Wednesday’s Philadelphia show finds her taking to the intimate (for Mariah) stage of The Met. Carey just celebrated her 49th birthday last week, and released her fifteenth (!) studio album, Caution, late last year. Check out the suave throwback vibes of “A No No” in the video below. // 8 p.m., $49.95, AA // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Wednesday 4/3: Ex Hex at Union Transfer
The Mary Timony-led indie rock Trio Ex Hex returns this spring with It’s Real, its second studio album — though you’re forgiven if it seems like we should be at more than album number two at this point, since Timony took her 90s band Helium on a reunion tour a couple years ago, and was active on the solo front and in Wild Flag prior to that. Basically, she’s always doing something awesome, and this Wednesday at Union Transfer is the latest chance for Philly fans to catch up with her. // 7:30 p.m., $20, AA // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Thursday 4/4: Patty Griffin at Union Transfer
Long-running rootsy singer-songwriter Patty Griffin released her self-titled new album last month via Thirty Tigers, and her tour in support of it has her playing Union Transfer on April 4th. Griffin found inspiration for her latest set of songs in the wake of her breast cancer treatment and recovery, as well as the current state of American Political affairs. Read more in this NPR review, and listen to “River” below. // 8 p.m., $35, AA // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Thursday 4/4: Low Dose at Johnny Brenda’s
We’ve screamed the praises of Philly punk four-piece Low Dose and their new self-titled album a lot this winter, so apologies if we’re starting to sound like a broken record, but they are indeed ridiculously good and worth your time and attention. The band released its self-titled debut album on Friday, and celebrates this Thursday with an album release party and tour kickoff show at Johnny Brenda’s. Watch the below video from the band’s recent Key Studio Session for a taste of what’s in store. // 9 p.m., $10, 21+ // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: And the Kids at Johnny Brenda’s
Northampton, Massachusetts art-pop duo And The Kids released their latest album, When This Life is Overan XPN-curated NPR roundup of videos-to-watch from Philadelphia, back in February, and will headline Johnny Brenda’s in support of its weird, wonderful left-of-center tones. Opening the show is the expansive Ellen Siberian Tiger, whose Shaking Through session wound up in . // 9 p.m., $15, 21+ // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: Spelling Reform at Boot and Saddle
Philadelphia indie rock four-piece Spelling Reform returns this week with Stay Inside, their second full-length album and first with new keyboardist Jim Gannon. The broader sound finds the band branching beyond the rapid fire hooks of their early days and letting their ideas simmer a bit longer, both sonically and thematically. Lead singer and songwriter Dan Wisniewski focuses a lot on connection and interpersonal interactions on this record, and cuts striking images out of characters like, for instance, American explorer Meriwether Lewis. They celebrate the new record this Friday at Boot & Saddle, Buddie and TIOGA open the show. // 8 p.m., $10, 21+ // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: Emily King at World Cafe Live
Soulful singer-songwriter Emily King returned this winter with Scenery, her third album and a huge step forward into soaring, groove-oriented pop. “Remind Me” is an unstoppable, uplifting jam, and as King and her band showed at a Free at Noon concert earlier this year, they can fill a stage and command a crowd like nobody’s business. They’ll do exactly that this Friday at World Cafe Live. // 8 p.m., $27, AA // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: Joe Jack Talcum at The Underground
When Joe Jack Talcum isn’t playing with Philly favorites The Dead Milkmen, he’s a left-of-center alt-folk (some might say anti-folk) singer-songwriter whose songs are situational, satirical, and incredibly sensitive. Friday night, he trips out into the burbs for a headlining set at The Underground at Lansdale’s Round Guys Brewery. // 8 p.m., $10, 21+ // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: Anna Tivel at The Locks
Portland singer-songwriter Anna Tivel’s new album The Question is a set of story-driven folk rock songs that ponder the biggest dilemmas in life. In an interview with Billboard earlier this winter, Tivel said her latest music “is sort of grappling with trying to figure out the meaning of a bigger thing and struggling with that — just the humanness of spending a whole lifetime struggling to figure it out when maybe it’s figuring out the struggle is the thing that actually gives it meaning.” If that sounds bafflingly self-reflexive, that’s kind of the point, but Tivel balances the confusion with beautiful melodies and intricate arrangements, as we hear on “Fenceline;” she’ll showcase the record this Friday at The Locks with Lowland Hum. // 8 p.m., $14, 21+ // TIX + INFO – J.V.
Friday 4/5: Foxtrot and the Get Down at Underground Arts
Get your rock on with Foxtrot and the Getdown, a three-piece band born in the streets of Northeast Philly and Havertown, PA. The band members, Colin Budny, Ryan Fox, and Ken BIano, met in college while Eric Ruiz joined the group in 2014. Since then, Foxtrot has been playing big shows across the East Coast and was named the top artists to watch out for in the Philly/Jersey area in 2014 by Creative Spotlights. // 8:30PM., $10, 21+ // TIX + INFO – Izzy Lopez
Saturday 4/6: Conjunto Philadelphia at Kennett Flash
As outside temperatures rise this week, so does Conjunto Philadelphia warm and dance-inducing rhythms. This Phill-based musical ensemble performs the music of pre-Revolutionary Cuba, including the Son, Cha-Cha-Chá and Bolero. They aspire to pay homage to the history of Cuban music while also infusing it with new energy. // 8:00pm., $14, AA // TIX + INFO – I.L.
Saturday 4/6 Bailen at World Cafe Live
Fresh off their performance at WXPN’s Free at Noon concert, Bailen is a trio made up of three siblings from NYC who have reclaimed the family band genre and are rocking out on stages across the country. A fresh mix of rock, folk, and singer-songwriter traditions, Bailen impresses with their tight vocal harmonies and dynamic sound. Their debut album will be released later this month, so catch them now to get the inside scoop on the next big family band. // 8:00pm., $12, AA // TIX + INFO – I.L.
Saturday 4/6: Archpalatine at The Barbary
A new band in town, Archpalatine is a theatrical, futuristic, and self-described “soul glam” band that is invigorating Philly’s local scene with joy and color. Archpalatine is led by singer and keyboardist Derek Anthony Wilson. Come see Wilson perform songs from his debut album Amalgam and check out what might just be Philly’s next big thing. // 7:45pm., $10, 21+// TIX + INFO – I.L.
Sunday 4/7: Shilpa Ray at Everybody Hits
Your favorite door girl Shilpa Ray will perform this weekend at Everybody Hits. Her sound has been compared to music legends like Patti Smith, Blondie, and Ella Fitzgerald. Dubbed the “artist’s artist,” Ray has been fighting hard for years to make her music with the power and lyricism that she has become known for. Check her out at this show to catch a glimpse of the woman who moved form guarding the club door to bringing down the house on stage. // 7:30pm., $10, AA// TIX + INFO – I.L.
The Week Ahead