The Best Concerts in Dallas This Weekend 7/18-7/20

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If the past few days have been a little disorienting thanks to this polar vortex, then fear not: there are concerts coming to help us all make a little more sense of the world again. This weekend brings performances from folk legends, a trio of rockin' brothers from Texas, and a legendary Houston rapper - among other greats. If you have yet to make weekend plans, start with this great collection of shows visiting the DFW metroplex this weekend - that is, if the rain doesn't carry us off first.

Steely Dan 9 p.m., Friday, July 19 at Winstar Casino, 777 Casino Ave., Thackerville, Oklahoma, 1-800-622-6317 or winstarworldcasino.com, $60-90

If there is any band worthy of a road trip, it's Steely Dan. While many acts that achieved the majority of their success in the 70's and 80's have descended into replacement member oblivion, the duo of Walter Becker and Donald Fagen remain amazingly transcendent. Touring, they surround themselves with top-notch sidemen and dig deep into their back catalog in order to satisfy the hardcore fans. Folks who only know Steely Dan by hits like "Rikki Don't Lose That Number" and "Reeling in the Years" will be sadly disappointed when confronted with esoteric and otherworldly numbers such as "Green Earrings" and "Bad Sneakers." Becker and Fagen are now in their mid-60s, but the duo shows few signs of slowing down. And with music this good, why would they?

Darryl Smyers
The Antlers With Thus Owls, 7 p.m., Saturday July 19 at Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, $16

For the most part, familiarity breeds comfort. In the case of some bands, that's fine and well. But a signature sound can also be a restrictive hindrance. In such cases, comfort leads to a complacent predictability. Brooklyn's the Antlers, the dreamy creation of Peter Silberman, has succeeded in offering up albums of increasing quality and, more importantly, they are anything but stylistically static. While the band's breakthrough record, the magnificent Hospice, was quite the critical rage in 2009, it's tough to argue the record wouldn't be topping lists of 2014 favorites. Silberman's intro to the world outside of indie-tensive Brooklyn holds up as a remarkable achievement in knitting together a narrative concept that isn't tethered too tightly. Familiars, Antlers' newly released jazz and horn-inflected jewel, is a misleadingly titled one. The only thing that's terribly familiar about Silberman's work is that it's fantastically unique from other Antlers records. And that, to us, is comfort enough.

Kelly Dearmore
Los Lonely Boys With the Digital Wild, 8 p.m., July 18 at the House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., 214-978-2583 or houseofblues.com/dallas, $25

Los Lonely Boys' interesting mix of rock, soul, country and Tejano has powered the Texas trio through almost two decades of good old Southern music. The band of brothers -- consisting of Henry, Jojo and Ringo Garza -- first got their start in Nashville during the late 1960s before returning to Texas to record and release their debut self-titled album. Since then, the band has released seven albums, including another self-titled release in 2004 (which sports a hefty Willie Nelson feature) and 2014's Revelations, released earlier this year. Austin trip-rock quintet the Digital Wild will open the night with records from their 2014 release, Into.

Michelle Ofiwe
SCARFACE With Doughbeezy, 7:30 p.m. July 20 at The Prophet Bar, 2548 Elm St. Dallas, TX, 214-742-3667, $25-30

As part of the legendary Houston hip-hop trio the Geto Boys, SCARFACE impressed many with his complex lyrics and contributions to the Houston hip-hop scene. His solo albums, many of which were released during his time with the Geto Boys in the late '90s and early '00s, rapidly earned him a separate following in the hip-hop scene. In 2001, he even won the Source award for Lyricist of the Year. Much has changed for the rapper-producer since then: along with a lucrative career as Def Jam South's president and coordinator, the (Houston) South Park native enjoyed success as a community manager, while still releasing a slew of new music for long-time fans to enjoy.

Michelle Ofiwe
White Arrows With Travis Scott and The Neighborhood, 8pm, Saturday, July 19 at South Side Music Hall, 1135 S. Lamar St, 214-421-2021 or southsidemusichall.com, $30

Since catching the attention of the online music scene, Los Angeles' White Arrows have been making people groove ever since. The dance-rock quartet's debut, Dry Lands is Not a Myth, was released in 2012 and quickly earned the band's first international tour with noted psych-pop duo Cults. The album's successor, 2014's In Bardo, is slated for a fall release date, which gives the band ample time to continue their domestic tour with American rock band the Neighborhood and Houston rapper Travis Scott.

Michelle Ofiwe
Kevin Gates July 18 at Trees

2014 has been a good year so far for Kevin Gates. The Baton Rouge native has already racked up a 2014 XXL Freshman spot and a cozy place on the Billboard 200 charts with his recent release, By Any Means. It seems the only thing left for the young rapper is a decent domestic tour -- and that's exactly what he intends to do. A great string of shows will do Gates well in the face of those still willing to sleep on his intense delivery and point-blank lyricism and will no doubt provide a healthy boost for the rest of the year. This will be his first show in Dallas, which makes it perfect for the intimate settings of Trees' stage.

Michelle Ofiwe

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