Tuesday, Dec. 20, Digable Planets, F. Stokes, U.G.O. Crew at Brooklyn Bowl, $10
Brooklyn Bowl continues throwing around the jazz and hip-hop clout it has earned since its Questlove residency, this week in the form of a sporadically resurrected Digable Planets. Though in recent years, the Planets hired a Ladybug Mecca doppelganger, known as Lady Rocka, to fill out her verses, the sly samples and refrain of “Cool Like Dat” will prove hot enough to combat the city’s sudden chill. This listing cannot go without mention of Ishmael Butler – the Planets’ Butterfly – and his Shabazz Palaces project. Not only are his insights on the excellent Black Up LP some of the most successful of the year musically and lyrically, but Butler’s also been inviting fellow Palaces percussionist Tendai Maraire to the Digables stage in recent years. With so much roiling beneath the surface of the Planets these days, anything incendiary is bound to happen at this show.
Tuesday, Dec, 20, Hubble, Dome Theater, Bow Ribbons, Diamond Terrifier, Swarms at Zebulon, donation$
While this entire bill offers a more disparate spattering of New York’s avant-garde, we’re especially eager to note Ben Greenberg’s solo guitar outing under the sky-high Hubble moniker. Greenberg is tenured faculty of avant-jazzists Zs as well as noise-punkers Pygmy Shrews. He melds the unpredictability of the first with the sonic defamation of the second, in a way that comes out both boisterous and refined. Whether that’s in his complex layered arpeggios or in breaking his guitar signal into four separate channels that route to four different amps, Greenberg’s struck on something unique, thoughtful and partially deranged. The fact he’ll take the stage at Zebulon is only a bonus, albeit a big one.
Thursday, Dec. 22, Dum Dum Girls, Crocodiles, Bleeding Rainbow, Cassie Ramone at Glasslands, $10
Dee Dee Penny of Dum Dum Girls and her husband Brandon Welchez of Crocodiles are the first couple of grimy noise-pop, and the mooney eyes and lovely harmonies these two make together when they get on stage make their hissy, held-together-with Scotch-tape Jesus And Mary Chainisms that much more adorable. These two will be stripped bare of their layers of reverb for this acoustic show, but considering that the Dum Dum Girls new album Only In Dreams feels like it would have been a winner in any era or with any production style, we're sure the night won't suffer for lack of amplification. Also, respect to Bleeding Rainbow for one of the better pun-based band names in recent memory.
Tuesday, Dec. 20-Tuesday, Dec. 27, Yo La Tengo at Maxwell's, $35
This is a local tradition for fans of winsome, indie-pop guitar work outs, and Ira Kaplan has been given the all-clear to show up despite health issues. Anything could happen set wise, and anyone could show up (The National and Marc Maron dropped by last year), and you have eight different options here, so there's really no excuse not to get traditional.