Wednesday, Oct. 24
PLAN A: Bob Dylan and His Band, Mark Knopfler @ Valley View Casino Center. Bob Dylan really lets it all hang out on his new album, Tempest. Brimming with deathly lyrics, phlegm-y vocal inflections and a variety of music styles, the effort culminates in a lush, ominously calm, 14-minute title track—about the sinking of the Titanic—that sounds like something a sad pirate might sing. PLAN B: Jealousy Mountain Duo, The Nothingful Band, Bantam Feather, Montalban Quintet @ Eleven. Like the missing link between Ornette Coleman and Don Caballero, Germany's Jealousy Mountain Duo churn out a stormy swirl of oblique, dissonant guitar and skittering, free-form drums. BACKUP PLAN: Early Graves, Dead Ghosts, Moosejaw @ Soda Bar.
Thursday, Oct. 25
PLAN A: Gary War, Purple Pilgrims, Island Boy @ Soda Bar. If the bloodthirsty aliens in Mars Attacks! swapped out their laser guns for musical instruments, the result might sound something like Gary War's cosmic synth-pop. In songs like "Pleading for Annihilation" and "Thousand Yard Stare," the New York City songwriter dishes out an irresistible, punk-rock Tron-scape of scorched synths, twisted robot vocals and drum-machine beats. PLAN B: Calexico, The Dodos @ Belly Up Tavern. Tucson duo Calexico traveled all the way to New Orleans to record their new album, Algiers, but their windswept, Latin American-tinged folk-rock is just as moody as ever.
Friday, Oct. 26
PLAN A: Immovable Objects, Sleep Lady, Gypsyblood @ Eleven. Immovable Objects main man Matt Gagin recently moved from San Diego to Perth, Australia, but he's back to support his band's sprawling post-rock album, I'll Know to Believe in Sparrows. Local doom-gaze bruisers Sleep Lady also have an album in the works, and I'm eager to hear it. PLAN B: Night Moves, Ditches, Future You @ Soda Bar. With its catchy, country-rock twang, Minneapolis quartet Night Moves could've easily been mistaken for some '70s AM-radio throwback. But their muddy, psychedelic textures provide a current, indie finish. BACKUP PLAN: Blackout Party, Deadly Birds, Black Hondo, Shaking Pyramid, DJ Claire, DJ Mr. Mazee @ The Casbah.
Saturday, Oct. 27
PLAN A1: Gonjasufi, Crimekillz, Skrapez, Batwings @ Kava Lounge. His grizzled voice sounds like something from a distant planet—one that's eerily familiar to ours. His fierce, poignant words are so sharp that they might slice off your ears. Indeed, Chula Vista-bred singer / rapper Gonjasufi is truly exceptional, and this is a rare chance to see him live. (Check out our interview with him here.) PLAN A2: Matthew Dear, Light Asylum @ The Casbah. As you'll read in our feature, electronic artist Matthew Dear has a knack for buoyant pop hooks that strike an ideal balance between sexy and seedy. He's also a fiendishly sharp dresser. PLAN A3: The Tree Ring with Camarada, The Shivers @ Birch North Park Theatre. Local folkies The Tree Ring are celebrating the release of their second album, Brushbloom, and it's one of the most gorgeous pieces of music I've heard all year. For this performance, the group will team up with collaborating chamber group Camarada to play the full, 10-piece arrangements of their new songs. BACKUP PLAN: KRS-One, Luckyiam @ Porterís Pub.
Sunday, Oct. 28
PLAN A: A$AP Rocky, Schoolboy Q, Danny Brown, A$AP Mob @ House of Blues. Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky has blown up big-time during the past year, thanks to his swagger-tastic rhymes and the intoxicating beats of producer Clams Casino. Now, with the recent release of A$AP Mob's Lord$ Never Worry mixtape, he's coming out with his rapper buddies. BACKUP PLAN: Omar Rodriguez Lopez, Crypts, NiÒa Dios @ The Casbah.
Monday, Oct. 29
PLAN A: Niki and the Dove @ The Loft at UCSD. Go ahead and add Niki and the Dove to your list of incredible Swedish electro-pop acts (see also: Icona Pop, Robyn, The Knife). Their infectious single "The Drummer"—off the recently released debut album, Instinct—is a club banger with an artsy touch, mixing a propulsive beat and explosive chorus with icy-cold textures and lurching, metallic synth. BACKUP PLAN: Public Image Ltd. @ House of Blues.
Tuesday, Oct. 30
PLAN A: Red Fang, Black Tusk, Lord Dying, Marsupials @ The Casbah. Their badass riffs fall into the category of "stoner rock," but Portland's Red Fang don't just sit around smoking weed all day. In the video for their song "Wires," they buy a cheap station wagon to smash into milk jugs and television sets. BACKUP PLAN: Zammuto, Au, Rafter @ Soda Bar.