Happy new year! We made it to 2017! Hopefully everyone had a good break (if indeed you were lucky enough to have one), sincere best wishes to everyone for the coming year, I’ve a feeling we’re going to need all the help we can get. Thankfully, in terms of live shows, 2017 is kicking off in style.
5) Lee Fields & The Expressions, Lady Wray, Paul and the Tall Trees at Irving Plaza
If anyone had resolutions to have more soul in their life this year then Irving Plaza is the place to be on Saturday. With the loss of Sharon Jones at the end of last year, it’s up to the likes of Charles Bradley and Lee Fields to carry the torch right now. Lady Wray‘s latest single Do It Again, definitely taps into that old-school R&B sound while Paul and the Tall Trees released a whiskey-drenched Americana record called Our Love in the Light last year which is well worth 27-minutes of anyone’s day. Saturday 7pm
4) Blonde Redhead at Le Poisson Rouge
As they did in Brooklyn last Autumn, Blonde Redhead will be joined by the American Contemporary Music Ensemble for two shows at Le Poisson Rouge on Sunday, an early show at 4:30pm and a late show with doors at 8:30. Blonde Redhead have always been keen to explore new sounds and ideas over their 20+ years and maybe this collaboration is a sign of where they’re heading next. Sunday at 4:30 & 8:30
3) Horse Jumper of Love, Brittle Brian, Bedbug at ^603
If you head upstairs at Silent Barn on Thursday you’ll find a trio of acts from Boston, headliners Horse Jumper of Love sound like they have grown up listening to all the great slowcore bands (Red House Painters, Codeine, American Music Club, etc), which is a sound I’d be all in favour of having a comeback. Brittle Brian and Bedbug both have that Daniel Johnston-esque charming lo-fi sound that many people try and fail to capture, but this pair pull it off well. Thursday 8pm
2) Flower Girl, Datenight, Plains, The New Ones at Sunnyvale
Flower Girl have just released Tuck In Your Tie-Dye via BUFU records, and this is the record release show. Filled with delightful country-tinged jangle-pop with a slacker leaning, there are some obvious reference points but I can’t help but hear some Meat Puppets (circa Under the Sun) here. Both The New Ones and Plains will also be trying to out-jangle everyone while DATENIGHT will offer a good old garage rock Friday 8pm
1) Thou at Saint Vitus Bar
Doom seems like an appropriate way to start the year, and what better band for the occasion than New Orleans’ Thou? Saint Vitus thought it was such a good idea that they are having them place twice; Friday nights show with Unearthly Trace and Wormwatcher is sold out, but at the time of writing you can still snag tickets for Saturday with Miserable and Ghastly City Sleep. If that’s not enough, you can also catch the band at a 2pm matinee show at Silent Barn on Saturday.