The Ten Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 12/21/12
Here are the ten best concerts to check out around the city this weekend, in no particular order.
Dum Dum Girls + Crocodiles
The Glasslands Gallery
Friday, 8:30pm, $10/$12
What began as a scuzzy lo-fi one-woman show run by Kristin Gundred ("Dee Dee"), expanded to a noise pop project that added textured harmonies to the grittiness. With a classic Motown girl-group feel underneath layers of dreamy distortion, Dum Dum Girls pair unlikely sounds with unflinchingly likeable results. Think Siouxsie and the Banshees' aesthetic with the Ronettes' hooks--what's not to love? -- By Sarah Madges
'A Swinging Birdland Christmas'
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 6pm, $30
Christmas may not recover when this bunch gets through with it. You may not either, but you'll be glad you were under their mistletoe. This time, "they" refers to Jim Caruso and Billy Stritch, who play off each other like red and green, and Klea Blackhurst, who'll sing here and be heard at the North Pole, but they're nothing without bow-tied violinist/arranger Aaron Weinstein, guitarist John Hart, bassist Paul Gil, and drummer Carmen Intorre. -- By David Finkle
Friday, 7pm, $20
Earnestness has never come easily to the five smarmy imps who make up Toronto's prog-punk collective Fucked Up, and now that they're celebrating "Human Deadline Day," they're not showing any signs of late-hour introspection. The group's members--who have become critical darlings for evolving from gravel-throated Black Flag sound-alikes into a quirky, heavy prog group capable of writing smart rock operas like last year's David Comes to Life--have said they booked today's show in "Earth's capital" to ensure that it would be "wherever the party is when the shit all hits the universal fan." But since Fucked Up's singer has a reputation of charging the audience like a cannonball and throwing cereal on his fans, who's to say it won't all start here? Joining them for the apocalypse are indie-punks Lemuria, punks Night Birds, and indie rockers Parquet Courts. -- By Kory Grow
Le Zhang Quintet
Sunday, 10pm, $10
This adventurous Shanghai native specializes in deeply nuanced modern-jazz adaptations of well-known Mandarin folk songs, Buddhist sutras, and poetry. Le Zhang's pop aspirations went haywire when she studied at the New England Conservatory, and she later worked with Kate Bush interpreter Theo Bleckmann. The singer's quintet includes Sebastien Ammann (biano), Russ Flynn (bass), Max Jaffe (drums), and Jacob Teichroew (saxophone). -- By Richard Gehr
Friday & Saturday, 9:30pm, $15/$20
Oh, that Patti LuPone! She sure started something. Think of those Evita fans, or even tonight's star, the one who calls his show "Patti Issues" and talks about being so diva-gone that he eventually found a way to work with and for her. Here, expect the 36-year-old writer/director to blend his attachment into the story of a life with (and too often without) a gay father. A sui generis cabaret event, directed by Aaron Mark. -- By David Finkle