The Ten Best Concerts in New York This Week, 2/18/13

Categories: Listings, Live

Fred Armisen brings his array of talents to Bowery Ballroom on Tuesday

Fred Armisen
Bowery Ballroom
Tuesday, 8pm, $20
Yuk it up with Fred Armisen While we cozy up on Friday nights to watch new episodes of Portlandia, this week we're doubling the fun with the hottest (and funniest) SNL cast member. No, not Jason Sudeikis--Fred Armisen! The funnyman, musician, and actor is back onstage doing his thing, which could mean performing covers of the Clash, impersonating President Obama, or perhaps acting as sweet-girl Nina. Regardless, whenever Armisen hits the stage, it's always pretty damn hilarious and, of course, very charming. Tonight also includes comedy by Heather Lawless and music by Telekinesis. -- By Araceli Cruz

Tame Impala + The Growl
Terminal 5
Tuesday, 8pm, $25
The Australian psych-rock ensemble Tame Impala earned some worthy attention last year with the release of their second LP, Lonerism, which ranked No. 6 on this year's Pazz & Jop. A mix of Zombies-style harmonies and Barrett-era Floyd, the record somehow seemed even trippier and more kaleidoscopically explosive than its predecessor, 2010's Innerspeaker. Whether that has to do with the morale boost the group's mastermind, Kevin Parker, must have felt when that record was ballyhooed or the fact that maybe he just found a better stash, his loner ways are paying off. With the Growl. -- By Kory Grow

'The Bunker' w/ Speedy J+Peter Van Hoesen+Mike Servito
Friday, 10pm, $20/$30
Earlier in 2013, the Bunker celebrated 10 years of the uncompromising bookings that have brought hordes of serious techno heads to their home base of Public Assembly. This date marks the first Bunker appearance at nearby Output, with headlining sets from Belgian techno auteur Peter van Hoesen and Dutch minimal icon Speedy J ready to break in the gleaming Funktion One sound system with oppressive, fiery beats. -- By Aaron Gonsher

Henry Butler
The Stone
Wednesday, 8pm & 10pm, $10
A dazzling and funky cohesion of blues, jazz, and classical maneuvers, Butler is the latest and greatest in a line of stylistically voracious and percussively powerful New Orleans pianists that extends back to Jelly Roll Morton and mutated decisively with Professor Longhair. Butler's solo performance tonight, "The Ghost of Don Pullen," should ramble even further afield than usual in seeking the spirit of the late composer, bandleader, avant-gardist, and latter-days internationalist. -- By Richard Gehr

Polygraph Lounge
Joe's Pub
Tuesday, 7pm & 9:30pm, $12-$20
Keyboards-theremin wizard Rob Schwimmer and Bang on a Can guitarist Mark Stewart's new-music cabaret is a delightfully absurdist hoot for the whole family. Hence tonight's early show, "Bring the Kids!!" and its after-bedtime counterpart, "Songs of Baloney (Don't Bring the Kids!!)." Along with the operatically inclined Melissa Fathman, the virtuosic duo take a lysergic Spike Jones approach to the rock and classical canons, with dollops of topical humor, audience participation, and artful soundscaping. -- By Richard Gehr

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