The 14 Best Concerts in Dallas This Week, March 10-16

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We are now in the dead heat of festival season. Even though everyone's making their way down to Austin this week for some giant, week-long Doritos® party, there's still plenty going on right here in our own backyards. From Macaulay Culkin's pizza-centric Velvet Underground cover band to Miley Cyrus, there is an extremely diverse variety of live music in town this week- so if you're avoiding 35 South all together, we're bound to have something for you.

Big Gus & Swampadelic Monday, March 10, at Free Man Cajun Café & Lounge

In 2011, the Dallas Observer awarded "Big Gus" Samuelson the trophy for Best DJ. Samuelson does have an impeccable ear for great tunes and his low, Southern Barry White-ish speaking voice helps him excel in that realm on KHYI-FM 95.3. For years now, however, he has fronted one hell of a band, Swampadelic. By blending blues, zydeco and Western swing, Samuelson and his crew cover aural terrain that few area bands can. The Cajun flavor of his tunes comes naturally, as he was raised in Louisiana before making his way to Dallas many years ago. American Soul, his just-released solo effort, is a fantastic collection of primarily acoustic songs that are packed with, well, soul. Most of the songs are originals with a few re-worked numbers from Swampadelic's Paralngua album thrown in for great measure. Samuelson has long held a residency at the Espiritu Wine Bar in Frisco, with many a friend joining in, but Swampadelic's Monday night residency at the Free Man Cajun Café is as fitting, and as swinging as a Monday night can get.

Kelly Dearmore
Burger Records and Dallas Distortion Music's Spring Fling 2014 Monday, March 10 at The Where House

This off-shoot festival brings some of the best of Burger Records roster together with some of North Texas most buzz worthy bands. Fort Worth DIY venue The Where House will showcase performances from PUJOL, Cosmonauts, and Gapdream, as well as locals like cobalt cranes and The Longshots.

Vanessa Quilantan
Children of Bodom Tuesday, March 11 at House of Blues

For nearly twenty years, the Finnish heavy metal band Children of Bodom has done the symphonic, melodic death metal thing with passion and power to spare. Long considered one of Scandinavia's best metal outfits, Children of Bodom have never resisted change. Proof of such is the band's recently issued album Halo of Blood. Easily the band's most direct effort to date, Halo strips away some of the more neoclassical elements that had become somewhat of the band's trademark.

Darryl Smyers
Gary Numan Tuesday, March 11, at the Granada Theater

Mistakenly labeled a one-hit wonder for 1979's "Cars," Gary Numan has, in fact, had a fascinating career that has truly changed the entire genre of electronic music. At 55, he continues to evolve and still remains highly influential on acts as diverse as Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode. Last years Splinter (Songs from a Broken Mind) was heralded as one of Numan's best efforts since the glory days of the early '80s. Indeed, the album's dark ambiance was a stark reminder of exactly who started this post-apocalyptic mess in the first place. With his trademark sneering whine and those processed beeps and burps perfectly in place, Gary Numan is still the epitome of detached cool.

King Buzzo Tuesday, March 11 at Club Dada

The Melvins' frontman Buzz Osborne (aka King Buzzo) will swing through Deep Ellum early this week. His acoustic solo set at Club Dada will make for a nice calm before the SXSW storm.

Miley Cyrus Wednesday, March 12, at American Airlines Center

Weed-printed bodysuits, twerking and imitating oral sex on a man dressed like Bill Clinton are just some of the things stirring up controversy on Miley Cyrus' Bangerz tour. She's far from the little girl born as Destiny Hope. And after teasing, or possibly informing, the world that Hannah Montana was dead on Saturday Night Live, the singer hasn't come close to her old TV persona. 2013 was the pop star's year. She's given parents a reason to worry about their Disney-raised kids listening to her music and watching her videos when she sings about ecstasy and twerks on backup dancers. There have been some reports about a decline in ticket sales because of the negative attention, with Cyrus even commenting on it. "I don't think people realize how much energy I put into my shows and how much their bad energy brings me down," she tweeted. But her strong vocals and eye-catching stage presence will surely be enough to win over any unsure concertgoer.

Paige Skinner
DMX Wednesday, March 12 at Trees

DMX is one of rap music's last true bad guys. Prime examples of his trouble man image include his iconic blood soaked

Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood

album cover, his embattled history with addiction and criminal arrests, even his recent interest in a celebrity boxing match with disgusting human, George Zimmerman. Nonetheless, the leader of the Ruff Ryders Entertainment roster was a dominant force in late 90s to early 2000's, and his records are still held in high regard today. This is a no-brainer for every kind of rap fan, so expect a packed house.

Racoon Eyezz and King Camel SXSW Kick-off Wednesday, March 12 at The Crown and Harp and Good Records

This might be the most ambitious off-shoot fest we've seen all season. From 2pm to 2am on Wednesday, Ringo Deathstarr, Blackstone Rangers, and about seventeen other local bands will take over three stages between The Crown & Harp and Good Records. Two kegs of free beer will be provided by Saint Marie Records and Moon Town Records.

Pizza Underground Wednesday, March 12, at Dada

For those who keep up with childhood stars who later go on to perform in food-themed tributes to seminal '60s avant-garde rock bands, you already know The Pizza Underground (featuring Macaulay Culkin) will be making their Dallas stop at Dada Wednesday. If Culkin weren't attached to the project, perhaps this sort of tongue-in-cheek act would draw only minimal interest, and almost certainly not enough to garner a nationwide tour. But the band (comprising Matt Colbourn, Phoebe Kreutz, Deenah Vollmer, Austin Kilham and Culkin) seems to have drawn a minor cult following that has also sparked a surplus of cheesy pun-filled fan art on its Tumblr page. Their medley of Velvet Underground classics (as well as Lou Reed and Nico's solo work) sound like the hazy recorded memories of late-night parties involving group sing-alongs, sans the clanking of beer bottles and hand clapping. Despite the tomfoolery surrounding the delicious nature of Culkin's pizza-pandering venture, it's an endearing novelty. And the idea of seeing Kevin McCallister all grown up and playing kazoo and singing along to "I'm Waiting for the Delivery Man" seems somewhat surreal. It's certainly worth the $13 cover -- the price of a cheese pizza.

Aaron Ortega
Elton John Thursday, March 13 at American Airlines Center

Legendary piano man Elton John stops into town later on this week. The set list for his current tour is made up widely of the old hits, so don't miss out on your dose of classic 70s pop.

2 Chainz Thursday, March 13 at South Side Ballroom

Tauheed Epps, otherwise known as 2 Chainz, came up in the independent hip-hop world before the days of Twitter feeds, Soundclouds and blog buzz. As one-half of late-'90s Atlanta duo Playaz Circle, 2 Chainz and pal Dolla Boy funded their own first release, United We Stand, United We Fall. Some folks got shot, some folks went to jail, but Playaz Circle ended up on Ludacris' Disturbing Tha Peace label and 2 Chainz went on to spit guest verses on countless ATL tracks and release half a dozen mixtapes.

Deb Doing Dallas
St. Vincent Friday, March 14 at House of Blues

Hometown gal and current Dallas Observer covergirl Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent) will hold her triumphant this weekend at House of Blues. This will be her first performance in Dallas since the release of her critically acclaimed, self-titled new album.

Ludacris Saturday, March 15 at the Lower Greenville St. Patrick's Day Parade

For this year's St. Patrick's Day concert, we're bringing Mr. Southern Hospitality himself to the heart of Dallas. Atlanta's own Ludacris will be serving his biggest career hits on our main stage for the city's biggest drinking day of the year.

Spillover Music Festival Sunday, March 16 at Club Dada and Three Links

Parade of Flesh's ultimate SXSW hangover cure has evolved quite a bit over the last few years. Things have gotten a lot bigger since the days of Spillover's original incarnation, Brofest at Sandbar Cantina. This year, the talent buying company is pulling out all the stops. Ty Segall, Dum Dum Girls, Astronautalis, Har Mar Superstar, Marijuana Deathsquads and many more will contribute to one of the week's best lineups- sharing stages between Deep Ellum's Club Dada and Three Links. You're going to want to make it back from Austin in time for this one.


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