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Kid Cudi

Rasputina

Northern Lights, Friday

In the mid-’90s, their spooky Victorian style had the goth appeal to land Rasputina on bills alongside Nine Inch Nails and Marilyn Manson, but now the all-cello trio have waded easily into the burgeoning world of chamber folk with a style that might be about the most steampunk thing going. Amid an ever-shifting lineup, Melora Creager has continued to pen haunting pop tunes with epic themes, poofy sleeves, lace, top hats and interlocking cello parts. Joining Rasputina will be the equally cello-loving Brooklyn psych-folk band Prudence Teacup. Parisols, pocket watches and velocity goggles recommended. (April 2, 7 PM, $15, 1208 Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)

Kid Cudi, Wiz Khalifa, YelaWolf

Union College Fieldhouse, Saturday

Spring break’s over—it’s time to party. Mr. Solo Dolo himself, Scott Mescudi (you know him as Kid Cudi) heads up this Saturday’s concert at Union College, and he’ll bring along two more of the hottest young names in rap music, making for a wicked triple bill. Cudi’s engagingly odd debut album, Man on the Moon: The End of Day teamed the rapper-singer with Kanye West for a collection that had critics using terms like “groundbreaking,” and earned the Cleveland native a trio of Grammy nominations. Joining Cudi on Saturday are YelaWolf, who may or may not have signed to Interscope Records this week, and Wiz Khalifa, possibly the first North Dakota native to grace the cover of XXL magazine. (April 3, 8 PM, $20, $10 students, 807 Union St., Schenectady, 388-6118)

Pretty Lights

Northern Lights, Saturday

Ignore the lights, check out the numbers: Under the guise of his electronic-music project Pretty Lights, Colorado producer Derek Vincent Smith has had his three albums downloaded from his Web site more than a half million times. A Pretty Lights club tour in 2009 saw 65 sell-out dates; this year, the tour hits such luminous festivals as Coachella and SXSW. Smith, along with live drummer Cory Eberhard, are bringing the party everyone wants to be a part of to the Capital Region this weekend; if numbers truly don’t lie you’ll want to get your tickets in advance. Also on the bill: Jeff Bujak, and Emancipator. (April 3, 8 PM, $22.50, Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)

Blank Dogs

Valentine’s, Monday

Nobody puts Blank Dogs in a corner. One-man band Mike Sniper, as Blank Dogs, has released two records thus far—2008’s On Two Sides cassette, and last year’s Under and Under double-LP—yet his project remains shrouded in mystery. The tunes on Sniper’s MySpace page are about the only real clues we have to the band’s direction, since the artist himself has neglected to provide much in the way of public information (even photographs are scarce). So we can tell you that Blank Dogs minimal wave tunes have the shit-fi aesthetic favored by many of Sniper’s Brooklyn contemporaries, with enough old-school references (the Cure, Joy Division) to actually make it cassette- appropriate. (April 5, 8 PM, $8, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)

David Gray, Phosphorescent

The Egg, Monday

We’ll be up front with you. If you’ve been waiting and waiting for a chance to see soulful, melodious, British-chart-topping, Irish singer-songwriter David Gray and you haven’t bought tickets yet, you are shit out of luck. The show’s a sellout. Gray is still touring on the strength of his most recent album, Draw the Line, but judging from the tour reviews we’ve read, he’s been keeping the longtime fans happy with the hits, too. A recent appearance at the University of Buffalo prompted the Buffalo News reviewer to note, “His instincts as a popular artist were on full display.” This same critic, however, wrote that the opening act, Brooklyn’s Phosphorescent, stole the show with “a hypnotic country-rock sound that hushed the crowd from the first note.” (April 5, 8 PM, sold out, Empire State Plaza, Albany, 473-1845)


Also Noted

Matthew Shipp

Tonight (Thursday), Beninoise singer Angelique Kidjo returns to the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall to play songs from her new album Ő˙ö (8 PM, $20-$37, 273-0038). . . . Also in Troy tonight, New York City’s Matthew Shipp Trio play the Arts Center of the Capital Region; the performance is in celebration of the new exhibit, Freedom Through Collective Improvisation: iEAR Presents! Free Jazz from the Sanctuary (7 PM, $10, $5 students, 273-0552). . . . If your punk-rock record collection needs some fresh grooves, park yourself down at Valentine’s this weekend: Tomorrow (Friday), Plastic Jesus unveil their new vinyl release Waterford; the Turbo AC’s, Spread ’Em, Point Blank and Deviant Loners are also on the bill (8 PM, $5, 432-6572). . . . Saturday at Valentine’s, “punk-rock Americana” band the Slaughterhouse Chorus release their new EP; the Killerados, Slackjaw and the Fugue State support (8 PM, $5, 432-6572). . . . Grand Central Station bring the party to the Van Dyck Saturday night (9 PM, $5, 348-7999). . . . Siobhan Quinn and Michael Bowers will introduce a third, Quinn’s sometime performing partner Ben Murray, for a trio show at Caffe Lena on Saturday (8 PM, $17, 583-0022).


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