Top 5 shows of the weekend

La Sera Market Hotel

Now that the presidential debates are finally over, it seems like the best time to get out an do something that’s actually enjoyable. With amplifiers set between three and eleven this weekend, there should be something for everyone.

5) She Keeps Bees, Nico Turner, Oracle Room, Adam Schatz, Ian Chang, Friend Roulette at The Footlight
Brooklyn duo She Keeps Bees are about to go on a European tour in December, but you can witness their sparse arrangements at The Footlight on Saturday, a relatively new venue in Ridgewood that opened in the summer. The band’s last album, Eight Houses, was released in 2014 and deserves more credit than the Cat Power comparisons that are often trotted out. Friday 7pm

4) Robbie Fulks at Union Hall
Robbie Fulks is one of those artists you can recommend seeing even if you haven’t heard a note of his music and even if you don’t like country or bluesgrass, he has a way of captivating his audence and can make you laugh one minute and cry the next. His latest album, Upland Stories, was recorded with Steve Albini (more on him later), and is an absorbing experience, a little more somber than his normal output, you’ll be in for a rollercoaster of an evening. Friday 8:00pm

3) Okkervil River, Landlady, Lip Talk at Webster Hall
Okkervil River simply don’t put out bad albums, and last month saw the release of their eight album, Away, which keeps that unblemished record intact. It’s a collection of songs that naturally ebb and flow in cohesion with great synergy, as is often Will Sheff’s way. Thursday 8pm

2) Shellac, Shannon Wright at The Bell House
With five albums in twenty years, one could never call Shellac prolific, though of course Steve Albini is one of the most distinguished producers of all time (he also worked on Robbie Fulks’ latest album and many other times over the last 30 years). The self-proclaimed minimalist rock trio come to the Bell House for two shows (Sunday and Monday) and both are predictably sold out, but check day-of in case there are some tickets released. The band’s last album was 2014’s Dude Incredible and might just be their best. Shannon Wright opens both shows. Sunday 8pm

1) La Sera, Springtime Carnivore at Mercury Lounge & Baby’s All Right
If you didn’t catch our interview with Greta Morgan / Springtime Carnivore already then you can read that here. Not only have Springtime Carnivore and La Sera independently released two of the best albums of 2015 (Music For Listening To Music To and Midnight Room), but they have also released a covers album together (as Katy Goodman & Greta Morgan) called Take It, It’s Yours, re-interpreting punk and new wave classics as mellow strum-alongs drenched in vocal harmonies. I’m favouring the Sunday matinee show at Baby’s All Right, personally, mostly because it’s the one I can actually attend, but has the bonus addition of Todd Wisenbaker’s new band, TV Party. However, Mercury Lounge’s excellent soundsystem will bring out the best qualities in both acts perfectly. La Sera have just put out a digital EP called Queens, which you can listen to below. There are a couple of originals, a couple of rearranged songs, and the band’s cover of Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta LoveSaturday 7:30pm at Mercury Lounge and Sunday 2pm at Baby’s All Right.

Featured image of La Sera playing Market Hotel in May by Chris Quartly.

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