The 10 Best Concerts in New York This Week, 4/21/14

Categories: Listings, Live

Amanda Lopez
RiFF RaFF aka Horst Simco is in town Monday.
For more shows throughout the week, check out our New York Concert Calendar, which we update daily.

Monday, 4/21:

Irving Plaza
7:00 p.m., $20
Perhaps Riff Raff's existence, and subsequent ubiquity, in hip-hop was an inevitability. Perhaps it was written in the stars that a goofy white dude from Texas with corn rows, aspirations of superstardom and a penchant for describing normal things in terms of designer clothing would sign with Diplo and convince a legion of 17-year-olds to love him while confounding hip-hop's old guard. Perhaps it is obvious that this very, very strange man would play larger and larger venues every time he hit New York. Perhaps Riff Raff is for real. Perhaps the neon, the strange mannerisms and the bizarre behavior are all part of an act. Perhaps you are thinking about all of this too much and should just enjoy the show. -- By Drew Millard

Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks
Bowery Ballroom
9:00 p.m., $17/$20
When Avey Tare (the stage persona of David Portner) isn't busy with Animal Collective, he's flexing his even more intensely experimental muscles with some solo and side projects. It's been a year since Tare announced the ghoulishly named Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, a supergroup of sorts that includes Angel Deradoorian (formerly of Dirty Projectors) and Jeremy Hyman (formerly of Ponytail). This month, they unleashed Enter the Slasher House, an album not nearly as terrifying as it sounds. Well-received by critics and fans alike, it keeps in line with Tare's psychedelic freakishness while still being catchy and classically jazzy. Their ability to pull off that combination may be the spookiest part of all. -- By Brittany Spanos

Wednesday, 4/23:

Fear of Men
Baby's All Right
7:30 p.m., free
Brighton quartet Fear of Men approach records with fervent pointillism. Literally: the artwork for their last record, Early Fragments, was colored using tiny pixels. A band this meticulous usually isn't the kind to write sweeping, crystalline indie pop that's simultaneously saccharine and sinister. Then again, Fear of Men isn't your usual band. Their live set is equally as delicate as it is textured: almost like they forgot they're not a punk band. If melancholic lyricism and subtle melodies are your bag, look no further. Did we mention this show is free? That's a pretty good deal! -- By Maria Sherman

Patti Smith + Jesse Paris + Eric Hoegemeyer
The Greene Space
7:00 p.m., $30
"April is the cruellest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain" and snow, as the case may be. T.S. Eliot's timeless modernist epic, The Waste Land, is particularly apropos this year in the wake of the polar vortex. In homage to this "Sorry not sorry" spring, Patti Smith joins daughter Jesse Paris Smith and Eric Hoegemeyer for an evening of meditations on nature and ephemerality featuring Dickinson, Whitman, Sebald, and other remembrances of things past. Expect a tribute to two of Smith's former collaborators, Lou Reed and Pete Seeger. -- By Aidan Levy

Factory Floor
Music Hall of Williamsburg
9:00 p.m., $15/$18
Factory Floor proves the possibility of revelation through repetition. The critically acclaimed trio of Nik Void, Dominic Butler, and Gabe Gurnsey released their debut LP in 2013 on DFA, but they have been winning converts stateside for their percussive singularity thanks in no small part to this ongoing and rare tour, where the barely-restrained brutality of their interplay makes for an electric and unpredictable live experience. -- By Aaron Gonsher

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