Out Every Night: The Best Shows in St. Louis from February 11 to 17
Fri., 8 p.m., February 15
w/ Matt Pond, The Lighthouse and The Whaler, We Should Leave This Tree
@ The Firebird - $13/$15
By Christian Schaeffer
Look out for a pop triple-threat this week at the Firebird. Jukebox the Ghost continues to move out of the indie minor leagues with its increasingly radio-friendly and hook-savvy songs. Ben Thornewill's falsetto and big, broad strokes on the piano makes the band a less glitter-bomb-ready version of fun. Matt Pond has recently dropped the "PA" from the end of his name, which doubled as his fine band for much of the past twelve-plus years, but his soaring, burnished tenor lost none of its weight. Rounding out the triple bill is Lighthouse and the Whaler, a Cleveland-based band that's well-versed in keyboard-centered pop-rock that drives headlong towards an emotional core.
Fri., 9 p.m., February 15
w/ The Soul Selector Tom "Papa" Ray
@ The Demo - $15/$18
By Roy Kasten
It should shock exactly no one that LA garage-blues band Vintage Trouble did not live up to its live notices - especially a notorious Jools Holland-obliterating set in April 2011 - when it released The Bomb Shelter Sessions, a sweaty but ultimately restrained 2012 document of these four ferociously sleazy, mean, gyrating motherfuckers. So take heed: When the rhythm section locks down a trashy soul raver like "Pelvis Pusher," it kills. When guitarist Nalle Colt takes a lead, he slides and scrapes like Junior Kimbrough. And when singer Ty Taylor grabs a microphone stand, he melts the chrome before your eyes and ears.
Bob Reuter's Alley Ghost
Sat., 8:30 p.m., February 16
w/ Luella and the Sun, Melody Den
@ Off Broadway - $5/$8
By Josh Levi
Bob Reuter is a living legend. With a music career that spans nearly five decades, he's found a renewal of rock & roll energy in Bob Reuter's Alley Ghost. He writes unapologetic songs incorporating folk and garage rock, defined by an unmatched grit and fire in the belly. His creative endeavors run the gamut: radio DJ, photographer, writer, storyteller and, most of all, rock & roller.
Sat., 8:30 p.m., February 16
w/ Plume Giant, Ross Christopher
@ The Firebird - $12/$14
By Ryan Wasoba
When Of Montreal played in St. Louis in 2011, touring violinist K Ishibashi (stage name Kishi Bashi) performed a last-minute opening set of songs built from layers of violin loops. He was clearly a talented gentleman, bursting with the creative energy he had stored up playing sideman. His solo act has since blossomed on the strength of last year's 151a, a record of funhouse-folk in the vein of The Dodos and early Animal Collective. In the violin-looping songwriter scene, Kishi Bashi may not pose a threat to Andrew Bird, but Owen Pallett had better watch his back.
Sun., 7:45 p.m., February 17
w/ Masked Intruder, The Fucks Off and Dies, Eaten Back to Life
@ Cicero's - $10
By Michael Dauphin
From 2011: It's a shame: How many good albums fall victim to the cycle before they are ever born? Fortunately, there's the Humanoids. Its five members have all been in dozens of bands before. They have spent too many nights at crappy diners and squatter punk houses, and they know how to appreciate a little balance in life. If that means clocking forty-plus hours at a commercial insurance agency and saving your vacation to go on a weeklong support tour opening for some of today's most notable American punk bands, so be it. Too many bands become so entrenched in what's "expected" of them that they wind up doing the very thing they were trying to avoid in the first place: playing by the Rules.