Heads Up: 6 must-see concerts this week

Pub date January 7, 2013
WriterEmily Savage

It’s likely your first full week back to work after the holidays – and just how does that feel? Painful? Like a dull, numbing pain creeping up your neck? Fix it with fun, like the kind you’ll have seeing former Das Racist, Kool A.D. at Elbo Room, doom folk friends Chelsea Wolfe and King Dude at the Great American Music Hall, or producer Jerome LOL at Rickshaw Stop, punk act Kicker at Bender’s, or club night Push the Feeling’s one-year anniversary show at Underground SF.

Cheer up, Bay Area. There’s plenty to hear in 2013.

Here are your must-see Bay Area concerts this week/end:

Kool A.D.
Fresh off that announcement that his group, Das Racist, broke up (though it technically fizzled months earlier), Kool A.D., a.k.a Victor Vazquez, seems to be reinvesting himself in Bay life. The rapper-producer grew up here, and in 2012, he reconnected with his roots: releasing a mixtape (51) recorded in Oakland, littered with Bay notables and local references. Here’s to new projects on 2013.
With Safe, Trill Team 6, Trackademicks
Wed/9,  9pm, $10
Elbo Room
647 Valencia, SF

Jerome LOL
Remember when Rihanna played SNL and transformed the stage into an IRL URL with a green screen of floating GIFs and animated graphics while singing “Diamonds?” And around the same time Azealia Banks (recently involved in more controversy) released a ’90s-copping video for “Atlantis” as a seapunk mermaid priestess riding a Lisa Frank-like digital dolphin? Those aesthetics were largely reminiscent of LA’s Jerome LOL and his kind of early web archeologist-producers. Jerome has since come out as saying those takes on his flashy style were complimentary, though perhaps not the right formats, as they are void of substance and context. If you want to see the cursor starting point, you’ll make it to his show tonight. Plus, he does a chirpy club remix of “Diamonds.”
With RL Grime, popscene DJs
Thu/10, 9:30pm, $13-$15
Rickshaw Stop
155 Fell, SF

Chelsea Wolfe
Ah, the tormented love song. Chelsea Wolfe does it well. Vocally, she transfixes, sometimes sounding like she’s calmly wringing every ounce of blood from a relationship totem, at other points whispering cries of help from a enveloping darkness, the vibrations of the plucked-hard guitar strings reverberating in the distance. This rush of gloom and pain, in a genre she’s past described as “doom folk,” came forth in a fierce package in 2011’s electric Apokalypsis, and steadily zigzags beautifully through 2012’s meandering Unknown Rooms: A Collection of Acoustic Songs.
With King Dude
Fri/11, 9pm, $15
Great American Music Hall
859 O’Farrell, SF

Push the Feeling with Yacht (DJ set)
Push the Feeling, Kevin “epicsauce” Meenan’s affordable dance night at Underground SF – which I profiled in last year’s “Post-Everything” cover story – is turning one-year-old this weekend. Over the past 12 months the Lower Haight party has seen live performances and DJ sets from the likes of Les Sins (Toro Y Moi), High Places, Shock, Blackbird Blackbird, Heathered Pearls, Silver Hands, Yalls, and Chautauqua. This time, there’s a Yacht DJ set, and a live Jeffrey Jerusalem along with resident DJs YR SKULL and epicsauce.
Fri/11, 9pm, $5-$8
Underground SF
424 Haight, SF

Mister Lies
“Nick Zanca played in several punk bands in high school until he was introduced to electronic music and production in college. This happened about a year ago. Since then he’s caused quite the stir, catching a record deal and tour as Mister Lies. The deep, almost spiritual electronica, or “experimental avant-garde pop” as he prefers, draws inspiration from diverse artists — spanning Steve Reich to Missy Elliot.“ — Molly Champlin
With Some Ember
Fri/11, 9:30pm, $12
Bottom of the Hill
1233 17th St., SF
(415) 621-4455

Newish Bay Area band Kicker features members of Neurosis, Filth, and Dystopia, and sounds like late ’70s anarcho-punk à la Subhumans. Which makes perfect sense, really, as lead vocalist Pete the Roadie grew up in England, went to the same school as Subhumans and Organized Chaos, and has been a part of the worldwide punk scene since that formative year of ’77. Really need another reason to go to this $5 Bender’s show? OK: Bad Cop/Bad Cop — the LA rock’n’roll band with members of Cocksparrer tribute act Cunt Sparrer — opens the whole thing up.
With Pang!
Sat/12, 10pm, $5
800 S. Van Ness, SF
(415) 824-1800