Crooked Fingers, Rakaa of Dilated Peoples, Smashing Pumpkins, Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers, Jesse Malin & The St. Marks Social, Kiss 

Live: Music Picks Sept. 16-23

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Thursday Sept. 16
Crooked Fingers

Anyone who’s heard the deep rumbling voice of Eric Bachmann leading his band Crooked Fingers through one of his heart-wrenching songs knows the former Archers of Loaf leader has a way with delivering a lyric. He also has a way with delivering other writers’ words, as evidenced on the band’s 2002 EP, Reservoir Songs, and the new Reservoir Songs II, which features Crooked Fingers covering the likes of The Kinks, Moby Grape and Merle Haggard. Expect at least a few of the covers to make their way into the band’s headlining set. David Williams and The Awful Truth open the show. The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 9 p.m., $10.

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Rakaa of Dilated Peoples
As one-third of L.A. hip-hop pioneers Dilated Peoples, Rakaa has 20 years of firsthand knowledge of the hip-hop life to draw upon when constructing his rhymes. You can hear his experience throughout his new album, Crown of Thorns, a collection that addresses Rakaa’s spiritual life as much as his musical side on tunes like the title track and “Human Nature.” Rakaa’s gig with Shawn Chrystopher and The Strangers is the first of three Dew Tour after-parties slated for The Hotel and Elevate; Friday features DJ extraordinaire Rob Swift of the X-Ecutioners, and Saturday is a party hosted by pro snowboarders Louie Vito and Stevie Bell. The Hotel, 155 W. 200 South, 9 p.m., $10 or free with ticket stub from the Dew Tour

Friday Sept. 17
Smashing Pumpkins

It’s hard to think of a monster rock band that’s gone through as many career convulsions as Smashing Pumpkins. The series of lineup changes, overdoses and burnout cases would have stopped most bands in their tracks, but Billy Corgan keeps plugging along. Granted, he’s the only remaining original Pumpkin in the current lineup, but truth be told, he was the only Pumpkin who mattered when it came to writing and recording the band’s best albums, from Gish through Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. If you listen to the new Teargarden By Kaleidyscope EP streaming at the band’s website, you’ll hear that the new songs aren’t worlds away from the material from the band’s heyday. That’s a good thing, as is the fact the band is playing a club—once we’d have had to visit the Tox Box to see Smashing Pumpkins. Bad City opens the show. In The Venue, 579 W. 200 South, 7 p.m., $40.50

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Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers
These Northeastern roots-rockers came up with ingenious way to celebrate their 1,000th live show together—record it and sell that mutha! The band’s new release is called Live from the Heart: 1000th Show, Irving Plaza, NYC—6/15/2010, and the New York set captures all the heartfelt lyrics, improvised jams and twangy rock that has made the band live favorites for the past seven years. It’s 22 songs that come as close to capturing the Sixers' concert vibe as possible without seeing the quartet live. But you can get the whole experience Friday night with their headlining gig. Aslyn and Roy Jay open the show. The State Room, 638 S. State, 8:30 p.m., $15 advance/$18 day of

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Wednesday Sept. 22
Jesse Malin & The St. Marks Social

Jesse Malin is a rock & roll lifer whose music has evolved from the hardcore punk of his first band, Heart Attack, through the glam-punk of D Generation to its current roots-rock vibe. When I say roots, though, I mean the kind of roots you get from living in Lower Manhattan, where Malin owns a bar and spends a lot of quality drinking time with buddy Ryan Adams and assorted rock dudes young and old. Malin’s new set, Love It To Life, is a gritty collection of anthems sure to please fans exposed to his earlier solo works like 2002’s excellent The Fine Art of Self-Destruction. Moneybrother opens the show. In The Venue, 579 W. 200 South, 7:30 p.m., $10.50

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Kiss
Kiss is as well known for its uncanny ability to market anything plastered with the band’s name as much as for its hits like “Rock & Roll All Nite,” “Detroit Rock City” and “Strutter.” Now that the band is in its 38th year of existence, the members are going ahead and selling themselves on their current tour. A mere $975 gets you a “Meet & Greet” package that includes getting your pic taken with Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons et al, along with a ton of other goodies: a Kiss Flip Video Camera, T-shirt, set of guitar picks and poster, among other things. Thankfully, for those of you who just want to see the legendary live band spew some blood and breathe some fire, there are seats for only $30, too. Rio Tinto Stadium, 9256 S. State, 7 p.m., $30 to $115

Coming Up
Phoenix, Neon Indian (The Rail, Sept. 23), Bone Thugs-N-Harmony (In The Venue, Sept. 24), Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker (Usana Amphitheatre, Sept. 24), The Cult
(Great Saltair, Sept. 24), Dirty Sweet (Star Bar, Park City, Sept. 25), Lukas Nelson (Historic 25th St., Ogden, Sept. 25), Prefuse 73 (W Lounge, Sept. 25), School of Seven Bells (The Urban Lounge, Sept. 25), Land of Talk, Suuns (Kilby Court, Sept. 26), Tech N9ne (Great Saltair, Sept. 26), Joanne Shaw Taylor (Pat’s BBQ, Sept. 27), Band of Horses, Darker My Love (In The Venue, Sept. 28), Les Nubians (The Urban Lounge, Sept. 29), Tony Furtado (State Room, Sept. 29)

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