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The Nine Best Concerts In Dallas This Week, September 19-25

Good god, Dallas. It's going to be a cheap Monday. This weekend you've got live music in the city, in the suburbs, Fort Worth, and everywhere else in between. Unfortunately it's not a matter of who you're going to see, it's who you're going to have to miss. It's 2013, and though we were promised jet packs and cloning technology by now, we're going to have to keep roughing it. If you have the stamina- you can potentially bring the ruckus for Wu-Tang, reach out and touch faith at Depeche Mode, and play some wicked games with The Weeknd all in one weekend. Lucky you.

Minus The Bear Thursday, September 19, at Granada Theater

Seattle-based indie/math rockers Minus The Bear have released five full length albums over a span of twelve years. They're currently on the road supporting their latest effort, Acoustics II. Their first full-length acoustic album contains 8 re-imagined fan favorites like "Absinthe Party at the Fly Honey Warehouse" and "Hooray", along with two brand new tracks. Though they're not performing an entirely acoustic set on this stretch of dates, they have been unplugging for a couple songs each night so far. Go for Minus The Bear's big catalogue of beachy and ethereal gems, stay to hear it reimagined off the amp.

Vanessa Quilantan
Black Milk Friday, September 20, at Dada

Black Milk (aka Curtis Cross) is one of underground hip-hop's most respected and established figures. With a trademark sound that pulls from the jazzy styles of giants like A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul and J Dilla, Cross has made a name for himself twice over, both as an MC and a prolific producer. With an upcoming full-length release on the horizon (No Poison No Paradise) -- featuring guest appearances from Black Thought (The Roots) and jazz heavyweight Robert Glasper -- the new Dallas resident is hitting the road. The "No Poison No Paradise Tour" begins Friday here in his new hometown, and will see Black Milk performing his new music live. If a night of rubbery bass lines, soulful instrumentals and incendiary lyrical improvisation sounds like a good time to you, get in line early -- as with others in Red Bull's Sound Select Series, tickets are $3 and available only first-come, first-served at the door. If you need a little fix to tide you over until the show, check out Black Milk's woozy collaboration with Danny Brown entitled Black and Brown. It's a good one.

Jonathan Patrick.
Tab Benoit Friday, September 20, at Granada Theater

When road-tripping, it's always a good idea to put something over the speakers that's native to the land you're currently traversing. In the mossiest, murkiest areas of Louisiana this past summer, all I could listen to was the swampy, soul-inflected blues of Tab Benoit. The Lousiana Music Hall of Fame member has been recording since 1993, but hasn't released a new album in a couple of years. With two decades of songs that expertly mix Creole soul, Chicago blues and Telecaster-bending magic better than just about anyone living, who needs new tunes? The consistently sold-out rooms he plays to around these parts certainly don't.

Kelly Dearmore
!!! Friday, September 20, at Queen City Music Hall

!!!'s live shows are as unhinged as their name is un-Googleable. Try it. You've got to type it out as chk chk chk to get anywhere. And while I admit we music writers tell you you're going to dance


more often than you're actually going to be compelled to dance by a band, this band... this band gets people moving. Come early -- the exact undercard of Ice Eater and Son of Stan has proven a winning combination in the past.

Kiernan Maletsky
Glenn Tilbrook, Joe Michelini Friday, September 20, at The Kessler

Although primarily (and justifiably) known for his work with the '70s new wave/power pop band Squeeze, Glenn Tilbrook has never been one to rest on his laurels. As a solo artist, Tilbrook has released two exceptional albums, including 2009's Pandemonium Ensues, an effort diverse enough to include a contribution from none other than Johnny Depp. Special guests aside, Tilbrook's way with melody and restraint has always been his calling card whether in a band or playing solo. This tour features his solid backing band The Fluffers, an outfit that contains two members who also played with Squeeze on their reunion tour in 2012. Adding to the festivities is Joe Michelini from the New Jersey alternative rock band River City Extension. With Michelini also earning serious accolades as a tunesmith, those looking for a heady class of Songwriting 101 could hardly fare better than a night with these two talented souls.

Darryl Smyers
Depeche Mode Friday, September 20, at Gexa Energy Pavilion

British synthpop pioneers, Depeche Mode, have stood the test of time with a career spanning 30 years of touring and recording together. Whether you hear "Personal Jesus" blaring out of the jukebox at a suburban dive bar, or "Enjoy The Silence" mixed into a dance set at an uptown discotheque- it's always just as good as the first time you heard it. Their live show has held up as well, and lead singer David Gahan's seemingly ageless voice never fails to deliver. This Saturday at Gexa, supporting act Crystal Castles will no doubt prove to be a revelation in how much impact Depeche Mode has truly had on modern music.

Breakaway Music Festival Saturday, September 21, at Toyota Stadium (formerly FC Dallas Stadium)

I know it's in Frisco. It's kinda far. But let's rap about this lineup for a second. Juicy J is currently in the

midst of a hip-hop comeback story

we'll still be talking about when we're all in walkers, as a way of convincing ourselves we should try and get out more often. And he's buried deep on the undercard of this thing, behind the majesty of Explosions in the Sky and Wu-Tang Clan, who as you maybe are aware do not need a comeback story.

The Weeknd Sunday, September 22, at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie

The Weeknd is Abel Tesfaye. Raunchy lyricism, narcotic productions and a flagrant obsession with Prince are his tools. The shimmering, syrupy R&B that results is intoxicating. Tesfaye has a seductive current to his voice that makes debauchery and wicked ecstasy sound like really great ideas, making it easy to give in to his corruptive charms. His albums are intensely personal and alarmingly depraved tales concerning hazy partying and dysfunctional relationships. The sensation of listening to The Weeknd is one of blurry euphoria, tempting you to indulge in every cold passion you hoped to keep secret. After a trilogy of critically adored mixtapes and much blog hype, Abel Tesfaye finally, just days ago, released his first proper album, Kiss Land. As with most debuts, a tour has ensued, and, luckily, Dallas made its way on The Weeknd's cluttered calendar. If Tesfaye's absurd wordplay is any indication, you are advised to check your inhibitions at the door.

Mayer Hawthorne Tuesday, September 24, at Granada Theater

He's a singer/songwriter, producer, rapper, multi-instrumentalist and one helluva snappy dresser. Mayer Hawthorne is truly a musical force to be reckoned with. The Ann Arbor-born-and-bred artist is known for his signature Motown revivalist sound, and his ability to breathe new life into a classic genre. However, his latest album, Where Does This Door Go, is an interesting departure from his usual retro vibes. With production assistance from the likes of Pharrell Williams and Greg Wells, Hawthorne is exploring traditional pop sentiment with a very clear and relevant focus on the present. Featured artists like Kendrick Lamar and Jessie Ware add a depth and pitch of pertinence to Hawthorne's established style. The Granada is sure to be a perfect fit for Hawthorne's soulful and fun live show.


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