The 8 Best Shows in St. Louis This Weekend: July 29 to 31

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J'Demul will perform this Saturday at 2720 Cherokee as part of the Vibes STL Showcase. - PHOTO BY LOUIS QUATORZE
  • Photo by Louis Quatorze
  • J'Demul will perform this Saturday at 2720 Cherokee as part of the Vibes STL Showcase.

This weekend brings some dinosaurs (hi Journey and the Doobie Brothers!), a living freaking legend (good day to you, Ms. Parton) and a slew of shows with locally focused lineups (sup STL!). Check out our full picks below:

FRIDAY, JULY 29


Intronaut w/ Entheos, Moon Tooth, The Gorge, Quaere Verum
8 p.m., $12. The Firebird, 2706 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-535-0353.
By Joseph Hess
L.A. natives Intronaut hit every chug and double-kick item on the prog-metal checklist with vocals that flip between vicious screaming and straight-up singing. If Intronaut's video for "Fast Worms" is any indication, the band veers right off the beaten path by applying an oddly dark aesthetic as opposed to stumbling around drunk on testosterone. The songs are technical but not without meaty hooks that swing between melodic and discordant, never married to one particular sound. 

Patrick Sweany
8 p.m., $10-$12. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-773-3363.
By Roy Kasten
Patrick Sweany has the compositional chops to make it as neo-folkie singer-songwriter, but the rhythmic force of deep blues and southern soul has always pulled his music across more rugged terrain. The Stark County, Ohio native has more in common with Bobby Charles or Dr. John — whose high-and-redolent-as-a-pine drawl Sweany's own recalls — than he does any lyrical strummer north of the Mason-Dixon line. His latest album, Daytime Turned to Nightime, slinks and swamps and sometimes shakes with killer guitar work and gospel grooves, and something even more elusive: harrowing songs, poured out from the heart and rooted in impressive craft.

Summer Magic
8 p.m., $5. Foam, 3359 S. Jefferson Ave., St. Louis. 314-772-2100.
By Christian Schaeffer
There’s a pretty good chance that your new favorite local band will be composed of members of your old favorite local band — such is the nature of a supportive, restless and chummy musical ecosystem. But for this week’s show at Off Broadway, you’re bound to recognize some faces on stage. Summer Magic is the sunny pop project of Kevin Bachmann, the flaxen-haired bassist best known for holding down the low end in Troubadour Dali and Jon Hardy & the Public; he takes on guitar and lead vocal duties here. Joan of Dark is as close to a supergroup that we’ve seen in some time, comprising Kristin Dennis (Nee), Jenny Roques (Arson for Candy), Natalie Huggins (Wax Wine) and Elly Herget (the Skekses). This will be the band’s third show, so it’s still anyone’s guess how these four singers/songwriters will combine their powers. This show also marks the debut of Made-Up, Dennis’ proper follow-up to the late, lamented Nee. She’ll be joined onstage by Kimber Hall for this premiere performance.

SATURDAY, JULY 30

Al Holliday & The East Side Rhythm Band w/ Major & The Monbacks
9 p.m., $10. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505.
By Christian Schaeffer
You’ll find no shortage of local musicians who can tell you of St. Louis’ long musical tradition; hell, pick a bar in Soulard or on Broadway and you can hear them sing the city’s history right to you. But it’s rare that a talent as young as Al Holliday can encompass both tradition and invention. As the force behind Al Holliday and the East Side Rhythm Band, the pianist, guitarist and singer writes original soul-and-R&B inspired music, and orchestrates his vision with an eight-member band, all before his 30th birthday. On a track like “Oliver Sain’s 3 a.m. Soul Serenade,” Holliday pays tribute not only to the great St. Louis legend but to the very experience of living and playing in a vibrant musical city.

Journey w/ the Doobie Brothers, Dave Mason
7 p.m., $30.50-$152. Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, I-70 & Earth City Expwy., Maryland Heights, 314-298-9944.
By Christian Schaeffer
Still touring without iconic lead singer Steve Perry, Journey has proven that it's the song, not the singer, that matters most. And when those songs range from the synth-pulses of "Separate Ways" to the sublime Bay Area love letter "Lights," you can count on some communal sing-alongs.

Vibes STL Showcase
6 p.m., $15-$20. 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center, 2720 Cherokee St., St. Louis, 314-276-2700.
By Daniel Hill
Founded by local visual artist Jarrel Lawrence in 2013, St. Louis art and music showcase Vibes pairs live music performance with visual art from talents both inside and outside of the city. “I started Vibes because I know, in my case as a young black artist, it’s hard as hell to showcase work in St. Louis if you don’t have a good-ass connection or a good-ass venue," Lawrence told RFT in October. His work is paying off. This is the fifth installment of the multi-media affair; the last one filled out 2720 with more than 800 attendees. This year's event will see perfromances by R&B singer-songwriter Bryssa and rappers Saint Orleans and J'Demul, to name a few, as well as exhibitions by more than a dozen visual artists. Come hungry: Food will be provided as well by sponsors Eatzz by Keysh, Interstate 55 Cajun-Creole, Chow Thyme Catering and Shari. 

Dolly Parton
7 p.m., $55-$195. Scottrade Center, 1401 Clark Ave., St. Louis, 314-241-1888.
By Steve Pick
She wears wigs — giant, puffed-up blond hairpieces. She lathers her face with enough lipstick, eye shadow and rouge to make her the envy of drag queens everywhere. Her jewelry is large and glittery; her clothing is just as shiny and tightly adheres to her body, which looks as though it were designed by Harvey Kurtzman, the creator of Playboy's '60s comic strip Little Annie Fanny. Her stage moves are left over from vaudeville, with hand gestures a six-year old could create and a cornpone sense of humor combined with a just-folks storytelling approach. Until you actually hear Dolly Parton sing, you can be forgiven for thinking of her as a caricature — but Dolly Parton is and has been for more than 40 years one of the richest songwriters and singers in all of American music.

SUNDAY, JULY 31

Funky Butt Brass Band
6 p.m., free. Carondelet Park, Leona Ave. & Holly Hills Blvd., St. Louis.
By Christian Schaeffer
How did St. Louis exist so long without a true, bonafide New Orleans-style brass band? Since Funky Butt Brass Band came on the scene, it’s been impossible to miss the six-headed beast. At parades, at barbecues, at community radio festivals and especially at a certain oyster bar on Broadway, Funky Butt is a steady-gigging presence that references its Crescent City inspiration, but infuses plenty of 314-specific funkiness as well. Credit the oft-theatrical vocalizations of members Tim Halpin, Adam Hucke and Aaron Chandler for the band’s never-the-same-set-twice bravado, but recognize that “brass” is in the band name for a reason: These cats can blow.


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