Live Music Picks: Feb. 14-20 | Music Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Live Music Picks: Feb. 14-20 

Le Butcherettes, SLUG Mag's Time Warp, The Infamous Stringdusters, and more

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click to enlarge LINDSEY BYRNES
  • Lindsey Byrnes

FRIDAY 2/15
Le Butcherettes, Stars at Night, Lord Vox

This Mexican garage-punk band from Guadalajara deserves our full attention. Vocalist/guitarist Teri Gender Bender is far from your cookie-cutter frontwoman. With her raw, versatile vocals, the band's 1950s fashion inspiration and props like feather dusters and bloody aprons, it's no surprise why Le Butcherettes were awarded Best New Artist and Best Punk Record accolades at the 2009 Indie-O Music Awards. Ten years later, Gender Bender, Riko Rodriguez-López, Alejandra Robles Luna and Marfred Rodriguez-López have stayed true to their punk roots, even as they've added enough of a psychedelic and electronic feel to land them opening gigs for The Dead Weather and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Perky drum beats and political lyrics dominate their much-anticipated fourth full-length, bi/MENTAL, released Feb. 1 on Rise Records as the follow-up to 2015's A Raw Youth. The new album touches on subjects of family and serves as an ode to mental-health awareness. "Essentially, this record was inspired by the death of a living mother, but none of that matters anymore," Gender Bender said in a news release for the album. With production and cameos from indie rock legend Jerry Harrison of Talking Heads and an unapologetic take on female empowerment and avant-garde art-rock, Le Butcherettes should have your attention now. (Barby Garcia) Kilby Court, 741 S. Kilby Court, 7 p.m., $15, all ages, kilbycourt.com

SATURDAY 2/16
SLUG Mag's Time Warp: 30th Anniversary Party

Whether you celebrate Valentine's Day or not, on the weekend after, treat yo' self to a retrospective dive into the history of one of Salt Lake City's most pivotal music, arts and lifestyle publications. Black lights, T-shirt decoration and live screen-printing, a build-your-own SLUG cover station and SLUG Bingo hosted by Adam Sherlock are the initial draws of this celebration, with additional jams laid down by local favorites Cool Banana, Durian Durian and DJ Finale Grand. Spanning The Urban Lounge and Rye Diner & Drinks, this is a party you won't want to miss. City Weekly founder John Saltas tells us why: "SLUG Mag founder J.R. Ruppel and myself met up when SLUG was just a few issues old at his old music joint, The Word. J.R. started doing layout and production for our paper, and we let him use our stuff to produce his—copier, paper, computers, wax, knives, line tape, cigarettes, all the basics. It's easy to tell which ads and layouts J.R. did, since he fell in love with a particular piece of early software that let you stretch and scrunch fonts. It was like his 'sticky bandits' signature—you knew it was his work. Often, I had to pick him up for work or take him home, so at one point I just gave him my old red Saab so he'd have wheels. SLUG was cool, and a number of people affiliated with it from that period went on to do some great things. Good people and good times."(Nick McGregor) The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 8 p.m. $5, 21+, theurbanloungeslc.com

click to enlarge AARON FARRINGTON
  • Aaron Farrington

The Infamous Stringdusters,
Shook Twins

It might sound like an unlikely proposition, but there's only a scant divide between yesterday's brand of bluegrass and today's populist precepts. Often termed nü-grass, Americana or "grassicana," the current generation shows its reverence for the roots while tempering them with contemporary credence. The Infamous Stringdusters offer an ideal example in name and practice. After more than a dozen years and eight studio albums, the "Dusters" (as they're often called by their legions of diehard devotees) continue to crisscross the country, playing approximately 120 shows a year. Recognized by the International Bluegrass Association for their artistry and innovation, The Infamous Stringdusters incorporate guitar, fiddle, dobro, banjo and bass to mesh jam-band improvisation with dedication and discipline, resulting in rousing performances that emphasize technical skill, energy and exhilaration. This show's openers, identical siblings Katelyn and Laurie Shook—naturally known as the Shook Twins—bring their recently released fourth album, Some Good Lives, to town. An homage to the men around them, the Shook Twins share the idea that while a strong sisterhood and the #MeToo movement have brought serious concerns to the forefront, there are still more than a few good men willing to rally for their cause. (Lee Zimmerman) The Commonwealth Room, 195 W. Commonwealth Ave., 8 p.m., $30, 21+, thecommonwealthroom.com

click to enlarge RYAN PFLUGER
  • Ryan Pfluger

TUESDAY 2/19
Sharon Van Etten, Nilüfer Yanya

Sharon Van Etten has accomplished a lot since her last album, Are We There, was released in 2014. The New Jersey native, now a New Yorker, got into acting, guest starring in the Netflix series The OA. She went to school to get a degree in mental-health counseling and worked on several film scores, including music for David Lynch's reboot of Twin Peaks. But most monumentally, the singer-songwriter became a mom, giving birth to a first son for her and her drummer, now manager. After a whirlwind five years, Van Etten returns to her first love, music, with 2019's Remind Me Tomorrow, released Jan. 18 on Jagjaguwar. Written while Van Etten was pregnant, her fears and possibilities of impending motherhood infuse the record, which skews far more electronic than her past acoustic guitar-centric work. "I want to be a mom, a singer, an actress, go to school," the singer says in a news release for the album, "but yeah, I have a stain on my shirt, oatmeal in my hair and I feel like a mess, but I'm here. Doing it. This record is about pursuing your passions." NPR Music's All Songs Considered host Robin Hilton described the album as "full of all these pulsing synths and big beats and lots of strange dark textures." Van Etten has moved from spare melodies to fuller songs backed by a cranking band; for this album, she worked with producer John Congleton to make something darker, deeper and more energetic than her past work. As Hilton says, echoing the thoughts of critics and fans the world over, "I think it's the best thing [Van Etten's] ever done, and it's also unlike anything she's ever done before." (Naomi Clegg) Metro Music Hall, 615 W. 100 South, 8 p.m., $25, 21+, metromusichall.com

click to enlarge music-live-190214-parker-gispert-credit-alexa-king.png

WEDNESDAY 2/20
Parker Gispert

It's all too tempting to toss out a cliché like "Parker Gispert flips his wig," or, in this case, "Gispert flips off The Whigs." After five albums together since 2002 and an unceasing touring routine punctuated by countless TV appearances, it was clearly time for Gispert, The Whigs' lead singer, to take a breather from the Athens, Ga.-based garage-rock combo. So he did what all overworked rock stars do: He headed out of town. "I've never really lived out in the country like that," he said in late 2018. Yet while The Whigs were on hiatus, Gispert couldn't shake off his muse. "It sort of occurred to me I was going to have to do it solo for the first time," he said. "It was that realization—and finding myself out in the country—that broke everything down and made it a lot simpler." The resulting album, Sunlight Tonight, unfolds in a sublime set of songs imbued with psychedelic suggestion, using cellos, acoustic guitars, strings and keyboards to convey its aural imagery. The transition from studio to stage ought to be most satisfying, particularly in the intimate environs of Rye Diner & Drinks. Gispert has done solo shows before, but in the past, he's mostly offered individual interpretations of songs he wrote for The Whigs. This time, he'll have new illumination and inspiration to tap into. (LZ) Rye Diner & Drinks, 239 S. 500 East, 6 p.m., $16 advance; $18 day of show, all ages, ryeslc.com

click to enlarge RIS MAREK
  • Ris Marek

WEDNESDAY 2/20
Okilly Dokilly, Playboy Manbaby
I once had a friend who, for the sake of anonymity, we'll call "Jay." Jay wore light polo shirts and khakis. Outwardly, his appearance was clean-pressed and his attitude positive, but in reality, he was the biggest metalhead I've ever known. At shows, you could find Jay in the middle of the pit slam-dancing, headbanging and destroying anything in his path. Why reminisce on past friendships? Well, neighborinos, the old saying about not judging a book by its cover has come to life again thanks to Phoenix-based "Nedal" band Okilly Dokilly, which of course pays tribute to legendary The Simpsons character Ned Flanders. Inspired by a 1996 episode dubbed "Hurricane Neddy," this five-piece band of Neds is touring the country in support of their upcoming second album, Howdilly Twodilly. "You can be very much into metal and not necessarily have the look or the lifestyle," Head Ned, founding member and vocalist of Okilly Dokilly, says. And sometimes appearances can deceive; although Okilly Dokilly started as a simple idea, the band quickly took the online world by storm with just a four-track demo and no live shows to their name. Now, Okilly Dokilly is racking up press and exposure, the likes of which they never dreamed. In classic Ned Flanders fashion, the band has a mission in mind:"We do play up the story of this kind of volcanic energy in Ned," Head Ned says. "There's definitely this idea that Ned has this Jekyll and Hyde personality, and that's our storyline of what drives us for shows." Celebrating 2019 with more than a couple glasses of white wine spritzer, these Flanders fanatics have a few more aims, as well. "The band's current goal as far as 'Reneducation' of the planet is to make sure that everybody just gets closer to Ned, grows a little kinder and maybe uses their left hand a little more," Head Ned says. "Hopefully, our new record will reach far and wide and cheer people up." (Rachelle Fernandez) The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 8 p.m., $15, 21+, theurbanloungeslc.com

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Lee Zimmerman

Lee Zimmerman

Bio:
An accomplished writer, blogger and reviewer, Zimmerman contributes to several local and national publications, including No Depression, Paste, Relix and Goldmine. The music obsessive says he owns too many albums to count and numerous instruments he’s yet to learn.

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