Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Best Concerts in St. Louis This Week, May 26 to 31

Posted By on Tue, May 26, 2015 at 8:00 AM

The Decemberists return to St. Louis this Saturday at the Peabody Opera House. View more photos from its 2011 show at the Pageant in RFT Slideshows.
  • The Decemberists return to St. Louis this Saturday at the Peabody Opera House. View more photos from its 2011 show at the Pageant in RFT Slideshows.

Ex-Cult, the hyped-up punk troupe via Memphis, kick off a week of St. Louis music that includes truck-commercial legend John Mellencamp, avant-chamber group Alarm Will Sound, and St. Vincent, a band fronted by successful android-woman Annie Clark. On Sunday, Pop's Nightclub brings the best three-band metal bill in ages, on an outdoor stage no less.

Read on and let us know what you're looking forward to in the comments below.


Ex-Cult w/ Beth Israel, Black Panties Tuesday, May 26 Foam Coffee & Beer 10:30 p.m. | $8 By Joseph Hess This show is on "punk time." That means don't arrive before 10 p.m., unless you plan on pre-gaming with a jazz band. On second thought, that might be the perfect precursor to Memphis' Ex-Cult, who hides a soft psych-rock center inside its gruff punk exterior. Howling riffs race over a grimy bass tone, rife with enough crunch to fill out the sound. While this is most definitely rock, there's a dark aesthetic here that lends a distinct rip to the whole affair. Heavy but not too heady, the songs tear through at top speed, leaving before they wear out any kind of welcome.


St. Vincent w/ Sarah Neufeld Wednesday, May 27 The Pageant 8 p.m. | $25-$30 By Christian Schaeffer Say what you will about the Black Keys -- or, better yet, don't -- but St. Vincent fans were more than a little miffed that the duo chose Annie Clark's peerless outfit to open the band's winter show in St. Louis. A sold-out arena is hardly the ideal setting for Clark's nervy, avant-pop compositions. So it's a relief that St. Vincent returns to town in the friendly confines of the Pageant to perform tracks from last year's self-titled LP, which continued to push Clark's guitar prowess into more adventurous (and occasionally soul-baring) directions.


Alarm Will Sound w/ Syna So Pro Thursday, May 28 The Sheldon 8 p.m. | $15-$20 By Christian Schaeffer For well over a decade, the New York collective Alarm Will Sound has sought to invigorate the world of classical music by giving space for new composers to air their work with the weight of a twenty-odd person orchestra behind them. For this week's show, AWS delves into works by composers best known for jazz and electronic work: Aphex Twin's recent "Minipops 67" will be retooled, as will pianist/organist John Medeski's "The Eye of Ra." Most exciting, though, is the performance of a new work by local musician Ryan McNeely, who records as Adult Fur and who recently collaborated with Alarm Will Sound members at a March show in St. Louis.

Follow through for more great shows this weekend.

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