Photo via Bandcamp
The Domino Effect plays tracks from its new release Satellites at Vintage Vinyl for a free in-store performance on Friday night.
Leading the weekend ahead is the Domino Effect, a lyrical duo who we owe a nod to for naming a song "Riverfront Times."
While St. Louis typically sees a lull in the later part of January leading into February, the next three days blow that notion out of the water with a schedule that sees metal-legend Phil Anselmo, dance icon Steve Aoki and blackgaze pioneers Alcest.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 27
The Domino Effect
7 p.m. Vintage Vinyl, 6610 Delmar Boulevard. Free. 314-721-4096.
By Christian Schaeffer
From The Domino Effect Delivers Syrupy Smooth Hip-Hop with a Positive Message on Satellites
The Domino Effect, the hip-hop duo comprising rappers Steve N. Clair and Cue, like to boast that they are "the most known of the unknowns." It's a subtle subversion of hip-hop bragging, and the seemingly contradictory phrase underlines the group's upward mobility as well as its unwillingness to sacrifice its art for commercial gain. The pair's 2015 release Unknown
made its status plain in the title, but for the just-released Satellites
, the Domino Effect retains its underdog pose while delivering eight strong, varied tracks that rely on throwback soul samples and word-on-the-street rhymes in equal measure.
8 p.m. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Boulevard. $28. 314-726-6161.
By Roy Kasten
From Drive-By Truckers Are Grappling with America's Most Divisive Issues, From Ferguson to Trump
The title of Drive-By Truckers' latest album, American Band
, isn't a question, but it implies one: Can rock & roll still shake, rattle and roar through our divided national zeitgeist? Though Hood now makes his home in the Northwest, it's not as if the band has left behind its Southern roots. One of Hood's most poignant songs reframes the "duality of the Southern thing," as he once put it: "No matter where we are we're ever South." But the album's radically stated themes — violence, hypocrisy, justice, race and our seemingly eternal obsession with guns — are no longer regional for this American band. They are the truths that demand a reckoning of us all.
8 p.m. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Avenue. $10. 314-773-3363.
This trio has dug out a space for itself between Americana and Irish folk, serving up a crossed genre that lifts elements from many yet stands beholden to none. Falling Fences ventures outside its stomping ground of Soulard (where it occupies McGurk's Irish Pub every Sunday) for an all-inclusive winter concert that offers two full sets. Fans are encouraged to join in for a singalong on this night where the band will lead a live recording for its track "Songwriter's Hell."
w/ Nicole Grace, Aluminum Sasquatch Trio, BitchFit
9 p.m. The Way Out Club, 2525 South Jefferson Avenue. Free. 314-664-7638.
Last year Sunwyrm was nominated for Best Shoegaze/Psychedelic in our (final) RFT Music Awards. As to why those two genres were combined into one category, look no further than Sunwyrm's Bandcamp
which offers five releases all steeped in fuzzy riffing. The latest album is a live endeavor partly captured at the Way Out Club, which often serves as the band's base of operations. This last minute bill includes BitchFit, a duo made up of members from local noise cult Beauty Pageant.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 28
w/ The Body, Creepers
8 p.m. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Avenue. $17-$20. 314-833-3929.
Few bands are widely credited with the birth of a new genre but France's Alcest is often regarded as the forefather of blackgaze — a namesake that suggests the fusion of black metal and shoegaze. To wit, Alcest started in 2000 to express songwriter Neige's propensity for black metal but by 2007 the band's sound shifted starkly toward shoegazing songs. 2014's Shelter
shed any semblance of metal altogether while last year's Kodama
is regarded as a return to the band's genre-splicing form. To date, Alcest has done whatever it damn well pleases, including traveling halfway across the world to play in our cozy river city.
Rock the Spectrum: A Benefit for Giant Steps of St. Louis
w/ Cree Rider Family Band, The Bottoms Up Blues Gang, Grass Fed Mule, The Dust Covers
8 p.m. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Avenue. $20. 314-773-3363.
Local country, indie-folk and blues acts join forces for a cause that typically sits outside of the spotlight. Giant Steps of St. Louis offers support and education for children and teenagers with autism spectrum disorder. Founded in 1994, the organization has been an enduring element for therapy and learning with a wide range of services for local families. The bands on hand are among the river city's finest yet the cause is more than worth the ticket price alone.
8 p.m. The Old Rock House, 1200 South 7th Street. $22. 314-588-0505.
By Roy Kasten
Since the formal if not permanent dissolution of Nickel Creek, Sara Watkins has released three solo albums, including last year's Young in All the Wrong Ways
, a breakup album that's as plainspoken and unaffected as it is musically wide-roaming. While the album has few traces of Nickel Creek's bluegrass-meets-pop experiments, Watkins' sometimes bitter, often resilient songs shine with crunching rock, eerie folk, jumping honky-tonk and convincing country soul. Her voice, once a tangy and trilling instrument, has become more adroit, tougher even as she lays out truths that she knows alone won't set her free. Watkins may still be feeling burned, but her talent is far from flaming out.
9 p.m. Ameristar Casino, 1 Ameristar Boulevard. $30-$75. 636-949-7777.
Steve Aoki started the same way as many other musicians: He produced DIY records out of a dorm room and ran illegal shows in the student-run co-op across campus. Fast-forward twenty years and Aoki has been named one of America's highest-grossing dance artists, not to mention his achievements as a collaborator and an executive of the prolific record label Dim Mak. And his work is both far-reaching and diverse — he recently made remixes for the latest Dragon Ball Z video game, just because he watched the show as a kid. Nerd cred > street cred.
w/ Battlecross, Childbite, Hung Like A Martyr, Damnation Army
7 p.m. Pop's Nightclub, 401 Monsanto Avenue. $20. 618-274-6720.
Phil Anselmo's Superjoint (formerly Superjoint Ritual) is in many ways the antithesis of a group like Pantera. While all of Anselmo's bands share the same heavy DNA of metallic guitars with heft and deep, guttural vocals, the man himself has described the punk-infused Superjoint as simply "plug in and go." Arrive on time for an overall solid five band bill, especially Childbite, who is the unsung underdog of the whole lineup.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 29
w/ YOU., Hands & Feet
8 p.m. The Bootleg at Atomic Cowboy, 4140 Manchester Avenue. $10/$12. 314-775-0775.
When A Different Arrangement
dropped in 2012, the release laid a solid foundation for Black Marble, the brainchild of producer Chris Stewart. Rather than move with the momentum of a stunning debut, he waded in the waves and shifted his focus toward development, both musically and personally. It's Immaterial
dropped months ago in 2016, marking both a move from the east coast to the west and an audible evolution in his post-punk approach to Coldwave.