Monday, January 26, 2015

The Best Concerts in St. Louis From January 26 to February 1

Posted By on Mon, Jan 26, 2015 at 6:00 AM

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If Dudes Weekend was any indication, St. Louis is the epicenter for pop punk in the Midwest. Better Days hopes to keep the scene at fever pitch this Friday with launch of its latest album Nope, released by Encapsulated Records. The homegrown Slumfest Hip-Hop Awards show goes down Saturday night at 2720 Cherokee with live performances by local acts throughout the ceremony. After a successful program in 2014, Nathan Cook's Bruxism series returns to showcase experimental artists alongside the release of handmade zines and cassette tapes. For those looking for more low-key affairs, check out the Stone Sugar Shakedown's Monday night jam or DJ Mahf on the 1s and 2s at Pin-Up Bowl.

MONDAY, JANUARY 26

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The Stone Sugar Shakedown Monday, January 26 Cicero's 8:30 p.m. | $6 From Best Jam Band St. Louis 2012: When the average citizen thinks of jam bands, names like Phish and Widespread Panic come to mind. But Led Zeppelin jammed too, and Stone Sugar Shakedown's blues-steeped explorations tend to resemble the latter. The band sounds and looks transplanted from the 1970s, with hints of the Blues Brothers and Funkadelic, and it doesn't hurt that singer Tracy Gladden can alternately channel Grace Slick and Roberta Flack. It is no surprise that Stone Sugar Shakedown is incredibly active with appearances at clubs and festivals throughout the Midwest. The band is a crowd pleaser; it is sometimes funky, sometimes psychedelic, but it always infuses its tunes with an energy that only true believers in the power of rock can embody.

TUESDAY, JANUARY 27

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DJ Mahf Tuesday, January 29 Pin-Up Bowl 10 p.m. | free By Blair Stiles From the 2013 RFT Music awards: DJ Mahf works from some place in his brain that pumps out enough enthusiasm to make his work look easy. Performing with a chilled zeal, the Indyground DJ interplays dense minutes of thumping samples with crackling movie clips and fine-tuned, one-and-two-handed scratches. He has already banged around Kansas City's spirited Middle of the Map Festival with labelmate Brett Gretzky, crossed the northern American border and cut and pasted for Red Bull's Thre3style competition this year. Whether live or replayed through Indyground's streaming footage, Mahf exudes the enjoyment he feels: In tempo he bobs at the waist, moving faster in the moments when he is inundated with the floor's energy, always looking pleased. It is Mahf's obvious enjoyment of his craft that puts his sets so squarely in the spotlight.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28

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The 442's Wednesday, January 28 World Chess Hall of Fame 7 p.m. | $10 By Joseph Hess This mostly string quartet blends the sharp textural approach of modern classical music with the upbeat swing of jazz. The 442's were formed in 2012 by multi-instrumentalist Adam Maness who, when not on guitar, takes to the glockenspiel, accordion and melodica. In keeping with its penchant for playing varied places like Powell Symphony Hall and the Tavern of Fine Arts alike, Maness and company return to the World Chess Hall of Fame for an extended set of original compositions.

THURSDAY, JANUARY 29

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Cold War Kids w/ Elliott Moss Thursday, January 29 The Ready Room 8 p.m. | $22 By Christian Schaeffer After Spoon made its case for adventurous, soulful rock music produced with the piano mixed as loud as the guitars, a few bands took that particular ball and ran with it. The Missourians in White Rabbits haven't been heard from in some time, but Cold War Kids has been busy of late, releasing Hold My Home last fall and touring behind the new set of songs. The lineup has shifted slightly, with Modest Mouse and Shins drummer Joe Plummer taking over the drum stool, but the band's sound is still focused on Nathan Willett's heat-seeking vocals. Electronic musician Elliott Moss will open the show with synthscapes from his debut Highspeeds.

Read on for more shows happening in and around St. Louis this weekend.

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