Live Music Picks: Nov. 29 - Dec. 5 | Music Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Live Music Picks: Nov. 29 - Dec. 5 

Ministry, Trippie Redd, Echo & The Bunnymen, Kasbo, and more

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click to enlarge PHIL PAMET
  • Phil Pamet

FRIDAY 11/23
Ministry, Carpenter Brut, Natas Lived

For decades, war has served as a contentious topic in the metal community. Bands like Anthrax and Five Finger Death Punch have publicly voiced their support for troops in combat, while other bands like Otep and Black Sabbath criticized those in power. Some musicians play it safe and avoid writing politically charged content altogether, but Chicago industrial metal pioneers Ministry are no one's puppet. During the 2008 election, Ministry worked with moveon.org to help register 50,000 new voters. Earlier this year, the band continued that same movement with headcount.org in support of their 14th studio album, AmeriKKKant. Ministry's frontman and last original member "Uncle" Al Jourgensen has never come up short of words to lambast former President George W. Bush and current President Donald Trump. "Trump is just really emblematic of a much bigger problem," Jourgensen told House of Strombo in an April interview. "This album provides FEMA-type relief for the devastation 'Hurricane Cheeto' has brought upon us." The tragic passing of guitarist Mike Scaccia sparked rumors of the end of Ministry (again), but Trump's election lit Jourgensen up like a blowtorch. The 30th anniversary of landmark Ministry album Land of Rape and Honey also re-energized the band, with bassist Paul Barker joining Jourgensen for the first time in 15 years to celebrate it in a whirlwind media tour. Whether they're looking backward or forward, one thing's for sure: Ministry is here to make America think again. (Rachelle Fernandez) The Depot 13 N. 400 West, 6:30 p.m., $35 presale; $40 day of show, 21+, depotslc.com

click to enlarge IMRAN MALIK
  • Imran Malik

Trippie Redd, Saweetie, Flipp Dinero, DaniLeigh
Whether you like to spend the morning after Thanksgiving in a mad scramble for shopping deals, or you prefer to treat the day as a sleepy reprieve, don't miss the chance to kick the holiday season into overdrive with U92's Toyota Jingle Jam Night 1. Headlining is controversial Atlanta-via-Ohio rapper Trippie Redd, whose first single, 2017's "Love Scars," reached tens of millions of fans via streaming platforms. Full-length debut Life's a Trip came out in August, featuring collaborations from Lil Wayne and Erykah Badu, but its success was mitigated by Trippie's many feuds. The red-dreaded, face-tatted MC blamed 6ix9ine for having inappropriate sexual relations with minors, defended late rapper XXXTentacion against allegations of domestic abuse and was accused of including a Satanic ritual in the video for his song "Topanga." But Trippie—whose latest single "Dark Knight Dummo" with Travis Scott is a searing, horror-inspired testament to the pitfalls of success—believes all of that is just noise. As he told Hot New Hip Hop earlier this year, "Timeless music is a concept I can live on." Not bad coming from a fast-rising rapper who isn't even 20 years old yet. (Nick McGregor) The Complex, 536 W. 100 South, 7 p.m., $34.50, all ages, thecomplexslc.com

click to enlarge ROGER SARGENT
  • Roger Sargent

TUESDAY 11/27
Echo & The Bunnymen, Enation

Many consider these English post-punk legends a cult band with limited reach. But Echo & The Bunnymen have spent their entire 40-year career proving people wrong. When Ian McCulloch originally started the band in Liverpool with Will Sergeant and Les Pattinson, they committed the rock 'n' roll heresy of using a drum machine. When they toured the U.S. for the first time, Sergeant told a reporter that he hated the country and wanted to return home. When 1984's Ocean Rain was released, McCulloch claimed it was "the greatest album ever made," adding about its lead single "The Killing Moon," "There isn't a band in the world who's got a song anywhere near that." When McCulloch acrimoniously split from the band in 1988 and drummer Pete de Freitas died in a motorcycle accident in 1989, critics said Echo & The Bunnymen were doomed. But they reunited in 1997, long before such an act was considered holier than thou by Internet-fueled "cult band" fans. Seven solid full-lengths (including 2018's The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon) and several successful compilations later, these unlikely heroes are still at it, recently touring with alt-folk icons Violent Femmes and embarking on a headlining U.S. jaunt of their own. Lucky for us, McCulloch is still as ornery as ever, too: In an October interview with XSNoize, he went easy on U2's Bono, a target of his wrath over the years, but buried his spears into Stewart Copeland of The Police, calling him a "twat" and a "fuckwit" who, "in any civilized world would be shot to death by firing squad or by two firing squads in case the first lot missed him. He's just one annoying bastard." We love you, Ian! (NM) The Union Event Center, 235 N. 500 West, 8 p.m., 21+, $32.50, theunioneventcenter.com

click to enlarge JACK MCKAIN
  • Jack McKain

Kasbo, Vancouver Sleep Clinic, ford.
There's an art to reading the energy in a room. Knowing and understanding that mood is one thing—being able to shape an audience's feelings with energy built from scratch is a totally different animal. With performances at Coachella, Electric Forest and Red Rocks behind him, Swedish producer Kasbo is learning how to master that exact skill. The artist born Carl Gasbo is, at 23 years old, already an elite player on the EDM scene. His debut album, Places We Don't Know, comprises 13 tracks of chillwave-grounded anthems that dig deep on multiple levels. Kasbo throws intimacy and house beats together in a way that allows the music to creep up and latch on to your heart. Along for the ride is Australia-born Tim Bettinson, who brings his act Vancouver Sleep Clinic to the stage. With two EPs (Therapy Phase 01 and 02) out this year, Vancouver Sleep Clinic returns to putting out music independently, the way Bettinson likes it, after a long and tedious label battle. Both projects are haunting and dreamy, perfectly spacious and ambient to anchor the show. Opening up the night is Utah's very own ford. Prepare to lose yourself in the lush atmosphere all three artists will create. (Isaac Biehl) Soundwell, 149 W. 200 South, 7 p.m., $20, 21+, soundwellslc.com

click to enlarge NICHOLAS AMATO
  • Nicholas Amato

WEDNESDAY 11/28
John Maus, Conquer Monster, Muzzle Tung

This Minnesota-based multi-hyphenate looks like a professor, sings like a basso profundo and performs like a banshee, cutting his icy synth-pop with cathartic fire. On record, Maus produces what could easily be called thinking man's nihilism; Pitchfork once called him "the Niles Crane of the avant-garde," sending Frasier fans into fits. But on stage, Maus conjures up some primal beast, sweating, strutting and pumping his fists to the astonishment of new fans and the adoration of old ones. His latest albums, 2017's Screen Memories and its 2018 companion piece Addendum, feature hand-built synthesizers and punk philosophy, but there's a dark strain of comedy that runs through Maus' music, too. Some cheekily call his work "goth-pop"; others hail it as a retro-futurist masterpiece, all the rarities collections and box sets adding up to a discography that one day will be as challenging and rich as Lou Reed's. For Maus, what he does is part and parcel of the great American tradition of tweaking pop music to fit new norms: "Somehow all these disparate micro-genres and classifications go back to a single thought in the context of history," he told Spin last October. "The best stuff seems to happen when people try to follow the contradictions of what they're already given through to their breaking point." (NM) The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 8 p.m., $16 presale; $18 day of show, 21+, theurbanloungeslc.com

click to enlarge AJ GARCES
  • AJ Garces

WEDNESDAY 11/28
Street Sects, Portal to the God Damn Blood Dimension, Torture Porn

Austin, Texas-based duo Street Sects attracts many labels: industrial punk, hardcore noise, experimental rock—even plunderphonics, which denotes the alteration of existing audio recordings to make a new composition. But the best way to describe the band's aesthetic is with a film term: "noir." For Leo Ashline and Shaun Ringsmuth, darkness reigns in every direction, from the graphic covers of their three releases—2016's End Position, 2017's Rat Jacket and 2018's The Kicking Mule—to the terror induced by their body-punishing, fog-laden live shows. Flexing their muscles with brutally loud instrumentation and strained, often screamed, lyrics, Street Sects go hard. Yet The Kicking Mule represents a more nuanced step forward for the band: refined melodies, slightly clearer vocals that highlight Ashline's struggles with addiction and recovery, and well-structured songs that feed into a conceptual whole. On this tour, Street Sects will add a third member on guitar for the first time ever, rounding out the intensity of the band's performances. Asked about what propels them to put their bodies, their voices and their eardrums on the line each night, Ashline says, "The last thing we want is to let anyone walk out of the venue feeling underwhelmed—even if it's only for a handful of people who give a shit enough to come out." (Nick McGregor) Diabolical Records, 238 S. Edison St., 8 p.m., $10, all ages, facebook.com/diabolicalslc

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