Messy-haired boy wonder Kurt Vile stops through Dallas for a second time this year.
Messy-haired boy wonder Kurt Vile stops through Dallas for a second time this year.
courtesy the artist

The 10 Best Concerts This Week: Kurt Vile and the Violators, Young Thug, Flosstradamus & More

It's around this time of year when we see a decline in shows and an incline in hokey holiday hoorahs. But thanks to the efforts of some very cool artists who refuse to let concert goers be reduced to consuming the burned out and repetitive seasonal tunes heard in shopping malls the world over, there's still plenty of opportunities to get out and see some great concerts. This week marks the farewell show of Dallas' Dark Rooms, the return of Kurt Vile and the Violators and the chance to help the homeless and hear some great local music live with Chad D's 17 Annual Toy Drive at Libertine Bar.


Chad D's 17th Annual Toy Drive

With Straight Tequila Night, RTB2, Cliffs and more, 5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 12, at Libertine Bar, 2101 Greenville Ave., libertinebar.com, accepting donations

A lot of opportunities are available for folks to help out those in need this season. But why not choose an event that also offers up a great chance to see some awesome local talent? Chad D's 17th Annual Toy Drive at Libertine Bar benefits Dallas LIFE Foundation, a foundation that helps the homeless. Once there, bring an unwrapped toy or a cash donation and hear a great show. The event is hosted by none other than the Libertine's weekly Local Yokel Show. Diamond Victoria

Kurt Vile and the Violators
8 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 13, at Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, $30

Much like Father John Misty, Kurt Vile was originally a member of a prominent indie rock group. While FJM belonged to the Fleet Foxes, Kurt Vile played in the War On Drugs. He left after the band’s debut release to focus on his solo project, releasing two albums he recorded in his own home before signing to Matador in 2009. His major label debut was the album Childish Prodigy. Next came Smoke Ring For My Halo, which was well-received by critics, but it was not until 2015 with b’lieve I'm going down that Kurt Vile and the Violators gained widespread critical attention thanks to their blues and punk inspired hooks, tight lyrics and fantastic production value. It went on to be one of the most critically lauded albums of 2015. Had Vile stayed in the War On Drugs, there is a significant chance he never would have gotten the recognition he deserved as a songwriter. Taylor Frantum

Young Thug
8 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 14, at The Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 214-932-6501 or thebombfactory.com, sold out

Hailing from Atlanta, flamboyant 25-year-old Young Thug instantly made a name for himself in one of the densest, most saturated hip-hop markets in the country thanks to his eclectic, malleable delivery that ranges from rapid flows, screeching falsettos, barks and growls or mumbles that are downright inaudible at times. His one-of-a-kind sound has made him a star and in turn he’s gifted his fans with 16 mixtapes and one proper studio album over the last three years, making him a mainstay on the radio and hip-hop blogs. Young Thug is making the most of his moment and he’s bringing up-and-coming Atlanta rap star 21 Savage with him on this HIHORSE’D Tour. Savage is nearly the antithesis of Thug’s extravagant delivery and style. Instead he’s generated huge buzz off the strength of his no-nonsense approach and monotone raps strictly relating to guns, sex and violence, which promises an entertaining yin and yang dichotomy. Mikel Galicia

K-Love Christmas
With Mac Powell, Crowder and Unspoken, 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, Allen Event Center, 200 E. Stacy Road, Allen, alleneventcenter.com, $18 to $122

K-Love is coming through town with an “all-star” lineup of worship music’s most popular figures. If you think that there just isn't enough Christ in Christmas, this event will offer clean, wholesome and artistically bankrupt fun. Featuring industry heavy hitters (probably) like Mac Powell of Third Day, Crowder and Unspoken, this event will see to it that your children will want to go to bed on time. It is sure to be a night filled with fellowship, worship and covertly drinking gin and tonic out of a Yeti cup filled with “water.” Sins don't count when you're already in church. Or the Allen Event Center. At this point they're basically the same. Come experience the true magic of Christmas, exactly as God intended: in a giant arena, selling overpriced nachos, with artists playing intentionally vague songs for profit. Taylor Frantum

Flosstradamus
With Slushii, Towkio and Gentz and Jawnz, 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, at South Side Ballroom, 1135 S. Lamar St., southsideballroomdallas.com or 800-745-3000, $32

Ten years into their enormously successful DJ careers J2K and Autobot, collectively known as Flosstradamus, are promising to deliver their biggest production to date with the HI DEF YOUTH tour hitting South Side Ballroom Dec. 15. Considering the duo is already one of the premier acts in EDM today, known for expertly blending hip-hop trap music with up-tempo electronic music, the group’s loyal fan base known as HDYNATION should be in for a treat. Big name opening acts in Slushii, Towkio and Gentz and Jawnz help round out this festival-like sampling of a tour. Flosstradamus has a reputation for delivering dynamic live shows featuring elaborate stage setups, grand light shows and of course over-the-top antics from Autobot who always knows how to work a crowd whether he’s dancing, spraying water or on the mic encouraging the crowd to get rowdy. The HI DEF YOUTH tour is a cure-all for the winter blues. Mikel Galicia

Nick Waterhouse
with Vincent Neil Emerson, 9 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, Club Dada, 2720 Elm St., 214-748-5105 or dadadallas.com, $15

Nick Waterhouse barrels into Dallas this week with momentum at his back. Touring behind this year's romping Never Twice, the retro-soul artist has been earning rave reviews and packing crowded U.S. clubs with fans getting hooked on some of his catchiest music to date. Never hesitant to pay homage to the disparate sources that have inspired him — Bo Diddley, Van Morrison and the recently departed Mose Allison, to name a few — Waterhouse's songs bustle with brassy energy, forcing listeners to engage with complete attention and physical response. His approach may remind you of one of our local heroes, the Grammy-nominated Leon Bridges. And, it just so happens that the two kindred spirits have struck up quite the friendship, one that has produced the eminently groovy "Katchi," a standout track from Waterhouse's latest release. Expect that tune, and likely many others, to raise the action on Club Dada's compact dance floor to epic heights on Thursday night. Might Mr. Bridges also swing by for an appearance? Jeff Strowe

Dark Rooms
With Sam Lao, picnictyme and Blue, The Misfit, 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, at Club Dada, 2720 Elm St., 214-742-3400 or dadadallas.com, $10

After sticking around Dallas since 2010, the indie pop outfit Dark Rooms is packing up and moving back to Los Angeles next month. But not without a killer farewell show first. The move back to L.A. is meant to ease the strain on Daniel Hart, the band's songwriter, who also composes music for film and television. He's currently working on Fox's The Exorcist and David Lowery's A Ghost Story, which will premiere at Sundance Film Festival next month. Dark Rooms will continue to play music and tour, however. But this show, with a bill that also includes DOMA queen Sam Lao, picnictyme and Blue, The Misfit, may be the last time for a while that Dallasites will be able to see them live. Diamond Victoria

Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons
8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, Choctaw Grand Theater, 4418 S. Highway 69/75, Durant, Oklahoma, choctawcasinos.com, $55 to $75

The Jersey boy himself is coming to play and he’s bringing along the Four Seasons to end his 2016 portion of his tour. After the success of the long running Broadway musical Jersey Boys, which told the story of the formation and breakup of the Four Seasons, Frankie Valli has capitalized on his surge in popularity. The 82-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is still hitting the high notes with the current iteration of the Four Seasons and in October, Valli released his 11th solo release 'Tis the Seasons. Even after 65 years in the biz, Valli already has a string of concerts lined up into 2017. He’ll be playing concerts in theaters, clubs and casinos, including his Dec. 17 show at the Choctaw Grand Theater for anyone ready to take a drive down memory lane. Nicholas Bostick

Goodnight Ned
With Whiskey Folk Ramblers, The Birds of Night and Jackie Darlene, 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, Double Wide, 3510 Commerce St., 214-887-6510 or double-wide.com, $10

An excellent pairing of three local bands and a Waco-based solo act will make for a great evening out at the Double Wide. Goodnight Ned has honed a sound that comes across as equal parts Van Morrison, the Band and the Rolling Stones with all its blues, folk and rock leanings. They have received praise for years, and certainly deserve the kind of attention they get. Add in the Whiskey Folk Ramblers with their flavorful keyboards, guitars and horns. Tyler Rougeux's longtime band continues to impress, especially with their previous LP, The Lonesome Underground. Emerging country artist Jackie Darlene and Denton's the Birds of Night open. Wear a Stetson hat and find a good pair of boots and let the fun happen. Eric Grubbs

Wax
8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, at Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, $15 to $18

Los Angeles-based rapper and emcee Wax is anything but ordinary. The multi-instrumentalist, podcaster and YouTube extraordinaire first rose to fame after fronting the band MacGregor in 2000. Five years later, he left the band and he and his brother, Herbal T, began uploading YouTube videos showcasing the young rapper's talent and humor. Wax then went on to land a spot on the video-sharing channel's Top 100 Musician list and has since hit his stride with numerous EPs, mixtapes, collaborations and albums. Wax's fusion of reggae and indie hip-hop has led to the success of albums such as 2008's Liquid Courage, 2015's Livin' Foul and most recently, The Cookout Chronicles. Diamond Victoria

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