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Antibalas, Ben Sollee, Zen Frisbee and Shark Quest, The Big Beat Dance, Frontier Ruckus, Team Dresch, The Butchies, OFF!, Negative Approach, Double Negative, Royal Chant, more

The guide to the week's concerts 

This week's guide contains:

YES, PLEASE: Antibalas, Ben Sollee, Zen Frisbee And Shark Quest, The Big Beat Dance, Frontier Ruckus, Team Dresch, The Butchies, OFF!, Negative Approach, Double Negative, Royal Chant

VS: Mercury Dime vs. Kenny Roby vs. Chris Knight

VS: Gotye vs. Poliça



YES, PLEASE...

09.27 ANTIBALAS @ CAT'S CRADLE

Emerging from a five-year studio hiatus with a new Daptone deal, Antibalas got born again this summer with a self-titled release produced by former bandmate Gabriel Roth. Brooklyn's finest practitioners of the rippling Nigerian funk known as Afrobeat, the band hit pause for a few years while farming out some of its members to the hit Broadway musical Fela! The collective is touring behind the new album, which is full of subtle textures, rebellious commentary and well-placed horn, organ and rhythm riffs to shake loose body and mind. Greensboro's The Brand New Life opens with its equally bold blend of jazz and West African grooves. $15–$17/9 p.m. —Sylvia Pfeiffenberger

09.28 BEN SOLLEE @ CAT'S CRADLE

It takes a special kind of rig to lug a cello 3,200 miles across the country by bicycle. It also takes a special kind of musician to commit to such, much less release critically acclaimed music (both solo and with Daniel Martin Moore), record with My Morning Jacket, campaign against mountaintop removal coal mining and raise a son. Ben Sollee's never been your typical cellist, though. Sollee pulls and plucks and bends his way through classical, folk and soul for a fusion all his own. He's touring his newest record, Half-Made Man, out this week, along with opener (and part-time Guster member) Luke Reynolds. $15–$17/8 p.m. —Ashley Melzer

09.28 ZEN FRISBEE AND SHARK QUEST @ THE CAVE

It's a celebration of the Dixon brothers' collective oeuvre, motoring from the wild and freaky sounds of Zen Frisbee to the supple sophistication of Shark Quest's carefully crafted instrumentals. Laird and Kevin Dixon's guitar interplay keys both outfits. Charged with youthful abandon, Frisbee's a grab bag of sloppy, elbow-throwing two-minute rock songs occasionally veined with lyrically dulcet tones. Those more rhapsodic moments bloom in Shark Quest, a project initially fueled with tossed away Zen Frisbee riffs. The dramatic sweep sidesteps both post- and math rock for a richer, refined blend of melody and tension. 10 p.m. —Chris Parker

09.28 THE BIG BEAT DANCE @ HAW RIVER BALLROOM

Being the percussion genius that he is, Apple Juice Kid devised and now presents an evening of "retro futuristic tribal electronic mash ups"—in Saxapahaw, of all places. Featuring four distinctive drum specialists—Beverly Botsford on percussion, Atiba Rorie on djembe, Scott Crews on hoop drum and Larry Q. Draughn Jr. on drums—this ambitious roundup should lead from salsa to uprock to a danse macabre. This is also a collaborative effort with the local jazz pushers at The Art of Cool Project, which guarantees a smoothed-out touch with openers George Tisdale Band and vocalist Carlitta Durand. $10/9 p.m. —Eric Tullis

09.29 FRONTIER RUCKUS @ LOCAL 506

Don't judge this one by its cover: While Frontier Ruckus' name may perfectly conjure rowdy and raw roots stompers, the quartet's carefully considered moments of melancholy contradict such assumptions. Frontman Matthew Milia's warble and introspection meet subtle, sparsely arranged instrumentation that relies on indie rock inventiveness—check the baroque accents of horn and singing saw—as often as folk or alt-country conventions. Chapel Hill troupe Magnolia Collective puts members of Gambling The Muse, The Pneurotics and Red Collar to work on twangy tunes that range from jangling toe-tappers to brooding, gothic-tinged ruminations. $10/8:30 p.m. —Spencer Griffith

09.29 TEAM DRESCH, THE BUTCHIES @ THE PINHOOK

Could there be a better bill to cap off the Triangle's Pride weekend? Though two members of queer punk pioneers Team Dresch play in The Butchies, their legacies—and the music responsible for them—are quite different. Team Dresch barrels ahead where The Butchies later shot to the sides. And while the former act is a progenitor, the latter proved that rad rock 'n' roll bolstered by political and personal passions could sustain and regenerate itself. Both bands play rather rare shows on one bill today, with Greensboro's The Tomboys opening. DJ Queen Plz spins. $15/7 p.m. —Grayson Currin

click to enlarge OFF! - PHOTO COURTESY AARON FARLEY
  • Photo courtesy Aaron Farley
  • OFF!

09.30 OFF!, NEGATIVE APPROACH, DOUBLE NEGATIVE @ KINGS

If critical consensus is to be believed, OFF! heralds a new wave of hardcore—even if by faithfully re-creating the first one. The supergroup finds original Black Flag frontman Keith Morris leading Redd Kross' Steven McDonald, Hot Snakes' Mario Rubalcab and Burning Brides' Dimitri Coats through blistering one-minute blasts. They're mirror images of those he once led with Black Flag and Circle Jerks. Perhaps such a wave of hardcore nostalgia will give Negative Approach its due. The influential Detroit ragers boast one of punk's most ferocious frontmen in John Brannon, who wields a lethal bark. Double Negative's mutated hardcore offers a more complex counterpoint to OFF!'s snotty splats, meaning this bill runs backward. $15–$17/9:30 p.m. —Bryan C. Reed

10.03 ROYAL CHANT @ THE CAVE

While garage-rock's constituent elements come from all over—there's a little British Invasion reverted to bluesiness again, and plenty of doo-wop-descended punk—it's safe to say that the garages it formed in mostly weren't in Australia. But New South Wales' prolific Royal Chant offers a fresh, international treatment of this American rock style. It's not traditional garage, as many songs expand well past the two-minute mark. What's more, Royal Chant celebrates the infectious pomp, sneer and fuzz of mid-'90s grunge. But there's a trebly, raucous, elemental quality, too—reflecting the MC5 and its raw-boned inheritors, Detroit-born and beyond. The Hissy Fits open. Free/10 p.m. —Corbie Hill


FRIDAY, SEPT. 28

MERCURY DIME

FROM: Faith, N.C.
SINCE: Mid '90s
CLAIM TO FAME: Moody, textured Americana

Inspired by early R.E.M., frontman Cliff Retallick collected some buddies and made a couple albums for Yep Roc before they called it quits about a month after the second album's release. Some 15 years later, Retallick was doing film score work in Los Angeles and wondering if they quit too soon. Not only has he reunited the gang, but they're re-releasing Darkling and prepping a third album for release next year. You can hear Michael Stipe's influence on Retallick's vocals, plus The Band's piano-driven sway on its more alt-country passages. But elements of psychedelica and Southern rock stand out, too. With John Howie Jr. & the Rosewood Bluff and Jeffrey Dean Foster. At LOCAL 506. $6/9 p.m.

—Chris Parker

VS.

KENNY ROBY

FROM: Raleigh
SINCE: '90s
CLAIM TO FAME: Six String Drag frontman gets sophisticated

Kenny Roby's the kind of artist you expect would be huge in France or Germany—not through any fault of his own, but via our own stateside deficient attentions. Despite frequent accolades, larger success has been beyond his reach. While initially an alt-country rocker, he's moved beyond that into increasingly nuanced and moody arrangements that sit between Leonard Cohen and Nick Cave. He still rocks, but when he does it's taut and left-of-center. He's working on his fourth solo release and first in six years, which he promises takes on a more experimental tenor at times. Roby's vast skill and experience is more than the rusty Mercury Dimes can handle. With Caroline Mamoulides, who is releasing a record of her own, and Brett Harris. At THE POUR HOUSE. $6–$8/9 p.m. —Chris Parker

VS.

CHRIS KNIGHT

FROM: Slaughters, Ky.
SINCE: Mid '90s
CLAIM TO FAME: Emotionally harrowing country-rock

If Springsteen had grown up in rural Kentucky coal country, he'd probably sound a lot like Chris Knight. Knight developed a style informed by Steve Earle's early rebellious works and John Prine's dry biting wit. His characters are typically desperate, debauched or fed up, and they come to life in Knight's hands. Some can't hang themselves for the cost of "Enough Rope," while others take what charity won't provide, as in the powerful gunpoint admonition "If I Were You." Knight's latest, Little Victories, is his hardest-hitting to date, like outlaw county if smarts were declared illegal. Tonight, he is the must-see. With BJ Barham of American Aquarium and Michael Rank & Marc Smith of Stag. At BERKELEY CAFE. $15/8 p.m. —Chris Parker


MONDAY, OCT. 1

GOTYE

FROM: Melbourne, Australia
SINCE: 2001
CLAIM TO FAME: Hits station anomaly "Somebody That I Used To Know"

Is Gotye's massive and massively weird hit a sign of things to come? Is all the catchy, warped bedroom indie of the past few years now arriving for the masses, even if hedged and compromised via groups like fun., Foster the People and this twerp from Australia? It seems almost inevitable in a post-Garden State world. Spare and poetic (the title's lifted from an Elliott Smith song), Goyte's success scoffs at explosive EDM by simply existing on the radio. It's a wee bit of the twee indie sensibility brought into the world of merciless party music, and that's enough to appear innovative. With Missy Higgins and Jonti. At RED HAT AMPHITHEATER. $25–$70/7 p.m.

VS.

POLIÇA

FROM: Minneapolis
SINCE: 2011
CLAIM TO FAME: Bon Iver-endorsed arena indie with a touch of electro

The dance-friendly Poliça emphasizes all that's considered anathema to stalwart guitar-based rock 'n' roll: Lead singer Channy Leaneagh uses lots of Auto-Tune (which, Gayngs associations aside, may explain why vocal manipulation lover Justin Vernon's so big on the group) and their setup consists of keyboard, bass and two drummers, often hammering out the same hulking rhythms for a bit and then going off on their own. There is no guitarist. The result is clean-soaring catchy rock that's pleasing to the pop-minded, for sure, but exciting and just odd enough to grab the other kids, too. With Gardens and Villa. At CAT'S CRADLE. $12–$14/9 p.m. —Brandon Soderberg

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Thanks for the note, Amy. We've adjusted the text.

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