The Seven Best Concerts in Dallas This Week, August 15-21

This week brings us another installment of Red Bull Sound Select, one of Texas' best country bands, a local radio milestone, and some of the most influential artists of their respective genres. Lil Wayne has had some health issues on the road this year, so here's hoping that his time in the Lone Star State will leave him unscathed (and that he doesn't plan to stop through Sierra Blanca). No word yet as to whether or not My Bloody Valentine will be passing out earplugs again (as they did at their last Dallas show) but remember it's always a good idea to take them up on that offer. After sitting through their infamous 30 minute noise finale, you hearing may not be what it used to by the time Kurt Vile takes the stage on Monday.

Baths, Son of Stan, Ice Eater, These Machines are Winning

Thursday, August 15, at Three Links The Red Bull Sound Select Series has not entered Dallas quietly. Last month's free Erykah Badu show was something truly special. In its immediate aftermath, the Series announced its second installment: Tonight's Baths show at Three Links. The california electronic artist would be impressive enough at $3 cover. But with the help of Central Track and Spune productions, Red Bull has assembled a hell of a local lineup, including These Machines are Winning and two of the area's most interesting synth rock bands in Son of Stan and Ice Eater. Get there early -- they'll hit capacity for sure.

Kiernan Maletsky
Paul Slavens Nine Year KXT Anniversary Party

Featuring Dark Rooms, Blackstone Rangers and Diamond Age Thursday, August 15, at Dan's Silverleaf For nine years, Paul Slavens has been taking your requests when they don't suck and playing them on our independent radio station. He'll celebrate the milestone in Denton with a few of his favorite locals: The dark synthesizer pop of Blackstone Rangers, Diamond Age and Dark Rooms, which just returned from a European tour.

Eleven Hundred Springs Friday, August 16, at Granada Theater

These days, it's hard to be a country band. There are plenty of alt-country, country-rock and country-pop acts, but not many playing music as beautifully simple as that of our own Eleven Hundred Springs. Recalling the transcendent traditionalism of George Jones, Merle Haggard and even Bob Wills, Matt Hillyer and crew have been delivering the goods for the better part of 15 years. Oblivious to any trends or fashion statements, Eleven Hundred Springs are the musical equivalent of a great homebrew that has never had its recipe changed. Smooth, but still capable of some kick, Hillyer's songs (and the songs he chooses to cover) resonate with sincerity and a true grasp of what it means to be a Texan. If you had to choose one band to represent the city of Dallas, Eleven Hundred Springs would definitely have to be considered.

Darryl Smyers
Lil Wayne Friday, August 16, at Gexa Energy Pavilion

Remember when Lil Wayne aka Weezy F. Baby's plane made an emergency landing in Texas after he experienced "seizure-like symptoms" while en route to L.A.? We're happy the martian didn't die. It would have been another instance of one of the G.O.A.T. lyricists gone too soon. Plus, we're interested in seeing what direction Wayne will take in his 30s as a musician. He doesn't have the business savvy or marketability of Jay Z, nor the artistic sensibilities of Kanye. Maybe he's due for a role as a father figure in some sort of poetic renaissance, taking up where Tupac left off. Such an identity switch would take some work, but he, like Pac, could keep some contradiction, showing the duality that exists in all of us. But first, he would have to curtail moments like the stomping on the American flag and Emmett Till references, and show more of the side we saw during the Katrina disaster, when Wayne became a voice for the voiceless.

Lee Escobedo
My Bloody Valentine Saturday, August 17, at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie

When m b v appeared without warning in February this year, the entire music collective that populates the Internet, from one disparate and resentful blog to another, collectively lost all of its shit at once. It's rare that such an event can happen in the digital age, when albums are known about months in advance, leaked weeks in advance, already streaming on Spotify and YouTube days in advance. There's no mystery any more. The days when an artist can go, "Surprise, bitches! Here's my whole new album!" are long gone.

Or so it seemed. Maybe it's because nobody expected a new My Bloody Valentine album after 22 long years of waiting. Much like listening to Loveless, patience was rewarded with an album that went beyond the simple "Oh, I'm so glad they're back" reaction and into genuine amazement that a band could pick up where they left off two decades of musical progress ago. The waiting game for the new album then became a waiting game for a U.S. tour, and thankfully the wait for such a thing was much shorter, because Grand Prairie's entire Verizon Theatre is about to swell with noise. Gavin Cleaver

Maze featuring Frankie Beverly Sunday, August 18, at Gexa Energy Pavilion

In 1976, Marvin Gaye saw potential in an up and coming Philadelphia-based R&B group called Raw Soul. Gaye took them on tour, and suggested they change their name to Maze- the rest is history. Maze featuring Frankie Beverly went on to become pioneers of the Quiet Storm genre, championing a ten album career. This Sunday, at Gexa Energy Pavilion they'll take the stage with Kem and The Isley Brothers for a night of R&B classics. For a relaxing and romantic date night, bring your boo and stretch out on a lawn seat to take it all in. It's gonna be a grown and sexy Sunday, y'all.

Vanessa Quilantan
Kurt Vile and The Violators Monday, August 19, at Trees

Ex-The War on Drugs member Kurt Vile has come a long way from his days of playing free shows in Dallas at the old Lounge on Elm Street. Monday's show at Trees will be the biggest show Vile has played in the area yet, and it's all due to a string of five excellent albums. 2011's Smoke Rings For My Halo is arguably the best of Vile's run of greatness, having earned a spot on pretty much every critic's end of the year list, and it might have proved too daunting to follow up. Lucky for Vile and his ever-growing fan base, he was able to all but top himself with April's Wakin on a Pretty Daze, which feels much more experimental then his previous work. Listening to it is akin to taking a belt of whiskey after you realize you haven't slept well in a few days. In others words, a little weird, but fantastic at the same time. Plan on getting to the venue early, as the phenomenal Sonny and the Sunsets are opening the show and should not be missed.

Jaime-Paul Falcon

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