Top 5 shows of the weekend


Love is in the air, or not, this weekend; I’ll be able to help with the latter. Hopefully it’s a long one for all, however, with President’s Day on Monday. Forget about the potential -18 degrees Celsius temperatures (come on people, let’s stop using Fahrenheit, it’s so unbecoming and idiotic), wrap up warm and get out of the yawning chasm of nihilism that has been 2016 so far, we’re better than this.

5) The Soft Moon, Container, Uniform at Market Hotel
Market Hotel is well and truly in the swing of things now, having hosted Sleater Kinney in a soft opening and a few shows since, things start heating up with the likes of Faust playing next month. Before that, however, The Soft Moon will bring pounding synths, as will Container, for that matter. The evening will start with the snarling, bratty punk antics of Uniform. The Soft Moon also play at Saint Vitus on Sunday with Wall, and as of this morning, both shows are now sold out. Saturday 8pm

4) Blonde Redhead at Rough Trade
Now over 20 years into their career, Blonde Redhead continue to excel both on record and in the studio. 18 months on from their last album, Barragán, one wouldn’t expect the band to be premiering any new tunes (albums come once every 3 or 4 years these days), but a show billed as “an evening with…” may well feature the kind of career-spanning set that would delight everyone. It’s little wonder the show at Rough Trade has sold out, so if you still want to see them in some capacity you can head over to Baby’s All Right for a DJ set starting at midnight. Thursday 8pm

3) Protomartyr, Priests, Beech Creeps at Music Hall of Williamsburg
You’ll get varying degrees of enthusiasm even from within the Free Williamsburg team towards Michigan post-punks, Protomartyr, but after career-best sets and studio output last year, even naysayers are beginning to come on board. In tow with one of my favourite live bands at present, Priests, this is quite the double-header and if both bands bring their A-game then it has the potential to be one of the shows of the year, let alone the week. Priests haven’t released anything since 2014’s outstanding EP, Bodies and Control and Money and Power, so maybe we’ll get a few new tunes to boot. New York’s own Beech Creeps open the show and shouldn’t be missed either. Saturday 8pm

2) JG Thirlwell and Sarah Lipstate at National Sawdust
If for whatever valid reason you’re just not into valentine’s day (single, jaded, think-it’s-bullshit, prefer “Love Day“, etc), or you just have some shall we say, unconventionally romantic ideas, then National Sawdust is the perfect foil for you! Composer JG Thirwell has quite the varied and prolific discography, he’ll be on synths and sequencers while ambient/soundscape guitarist Sarah Lipstate (aka Novella) adds more layers on top. If you’re into any kind of ambient/drone/electronic/trance/improvisation then you will definitely want to check the show out. Note the late start time, so I guess you still have time for dinner reservations if you’re trying to impress someone. Sunday 10pm

1) Screaming Females, Dark Thoughts at WFMU Monty Hall
Look, I’m not going to send you to New Jersey unless it’s for a great reason, and that reason is Screaming Females. I consider them to be the best live band of the last few years, each time I have seen them has been at least an 8.5/10. Perhaps it’s no surprise then, that the band have sold out two nights in a row at WFMU’s still relatively new venue (it opened around 18 months ago). Those with tickets probably know the drill already: marvel at Marissa Paternoster’s guitar masterclass. The band have great songs and the formidable rhythm section of Jarrett Dougherty on drums and King Mike on bass as well. Support on Friday comes from Dark Thoughts, who are definitely channeling some Ramones and Oi bands. Long Beard opens on Saturday. Friday and Saturday 8pm

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