New York Music Daily

Global Music With a New York Edge

Category: afrobeat

Epic Big Band Surrealism and a Jazz Standard Gig From the Michael Leonhart Orchestra

The Michael Leonhart Orchestra‘s previous album traced the epic journey of a swarm of butterflies all the way from Mexico to Egypt. Breathtaking as that trip over the top of the globe was, Leonhart’s new album with the ensemble, Suite Extracts Vol, 1 – streaming at Spotify – goes in a completely different direction, although in places it’s even more swirlingly atmospheric. If the idea of big band versions of songs by Spinal Tap, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, the Wu-Tang Clan and Howlin Wolf are your idea of a good time, you should hear this record. Leonhart and the group are at the Jazz Standard on Nov 12, with sets at 7:30 and 9:30 PM; cover is $30.

The album opens with an exuberantly brassy Afrobeat arrangement of the Nusrat classic Alu Jon Jonki Jon, punctuated by cheery sax solos. Things get more surrealistically entertaining from there. The first of a grand total of six tunes from the Spinal Tap soundtrack, the wryly titled La Fuga Di Derek turns out to be a moody piece for Sara Schoenbeck’s bassoon and Pauline Kim’s pizzicato violin. Schoenbeck’s desolate solo intro to Big Bottom offers absolutely no idea of where the song is going: as you would expect, Leonhart has fun with the low reeds, and also adds an accordion solo from Nathan Koci. From there, they segue into a one-chord jam that’s ostensibly Ornette Coleman’s Lonely Woman. Most of this actually makes more sense in context than it would seeem to, Leonhart’s chart following a similar trajectory from spare and enigmatic to an extended, achingly shreddy sax break over mutedly snappy bass chords.

Likewise, The Dance of the Maidens at Stonehenge has repetitive low brass bursts bookended by lots of African percussion: it’s as sardonic as the original. As is the medley of Jazz Odyssey and Lick My Love Pump, a brooding accordion solo bridging the ominous opening soundscape and the majestic, sweeping arrangement of the film score’s most sarcastically poignant tune. The final Spinal Tap number, The Ballad of St. Hubbins is the album’s vastest vista, Robbie Mangano’s spaghetti western Morricone guitar over postapocalyptic Pink Floyd atmospherics.

The Wu and their members are first represented by the Ghostface classic Liquid Swords, reinvented with forlorn Ray Mason trombone over grey-sky ambience, with darkly Balkan-tinged accordion: RZA would no doubt approve. Da Mystery of Chessboxing vamps along, alternately gusty and blithe, hypnotic and funky, while Liquid Chamber provides a launching pad for a slashing, Romany-flavored violin solo from Kim.

The diptych of ODB’s Shimmy Shimmy Ya and Raekwon’s Glaciers of Ice is the album’s most distinctively noir track, all ominous rises and falls. The concluding tune is a beefy take of Fela’s Quiet Man Is Dead Man and Opposite People, which could be Antibalas at their most symphonic. And Leonhart recasts the Howlin Wolf hit Built for Comfort as a slow, simmering, roadhouse fuzztone groove evocative of Quincy Jones’ 1960s film work.

Leonhart conducts and plays trumpet, mellophonium and bass harmonica; the rest of the group also includes Kevin Raczka and Eric Harland sharing the drum chair, Elizabeth Pupo-Walker and Daniel Freedman on percussion; Joe Martin and Jay Leonhart (Michael’s dad) on bass; Nels Cline on guitar; Philip Dizack, Dave Guy, Jordan McLean, Carter Yasutake and Andy Bush on trumpets; John Ellis, Ian Hendrickson-Smith, Chris Potter, Donny McCaslin and Jason Marshall on saxes; Sam Sadigursky and Daniel Srebnick on flutes and Erik Friedlander on cello.

Multistylistic, Psychedelic Dance Grooves and a Midtown Release Show From Dawn Drake & ZapOte

Dawn Drake & ZapOte are a blazing horn-driven band who play just about every style of dance music you could want. Afrobeat? Check. Salsa? Doublecheck. Hard funk? Word. Ethiopiques? Kind of. They’re as psychedelic as they are stylistically diverse, and frontwoman Drake is the rare bassist across all those styles who likes incisive lowdown riffs and makes those notes count without overplaying. The band’s new album Nightshade isn’t out officially yet and is due up momentarily at her Bandcamp page They’re playing the release show in a more sit-downy place than usual for them, Club Bonafide, on Nov 8 at 10 PM. Cover is $15.

The album opens with Oya de Zarija, Mara Rosenbloom’s langorous electric piano over a trip-hop sway and elegantly layered polyrhythmic percussion: a stoner soul jam, more or less. The first of the Afrobeat numbers is Shoulda Never, a miniature that the band reprise toward the end of the record. Chi Chi’s Afrobeat, the album’s longest joint, is especially catchy, with a tantalizingly brief Maria Eisen sax break and dubby keys.

Ethwaap is just as anthemic, a vampy minor-key tune wryly flavored with P-Funk psychedelic keyb flourishes and a spiraling flute solo. Zim ta Tim is a slinky slice of tropicalia, kicking off with surreal, baroque-tinged vocal harmonies.

Drake mashes up cumbia with soca in Salon de Coiffure (i.e. Hair Salon), with a thicket of bright Eliane Amherd guitar multitracks. Likewise, the kiss-off anthem Judgment Rumba is part roots reggae, part oldschool salsa dura. The album’s best track is the East African-flavored Puriya Makuta, with a Bob Marley Exodus pulse, brief, purposeful solos from Eisen’s sax and Jackie Coleman’s trumpet, and the group’s dubbiest interlude.

Bunny’s Jam turns out to be a return to concise Afrobeat – imagine that, wow! The group stay on the Afrobeat tip to wind up the album with the Wake Up Remix, a fiery, organ-driven, apocalyptic cautionary tale. Great party record; play it loud.

 

The Ghost Funk Orchestra Materialize at Bryant Park

The Ghost Funk Orchestra was originally a one-man band studio project. Then word started getting out about how incredibly fun – and psychedelically creepy – Seth Applebaum’s oldschool soul instrumentals were. All of a sudden there was a band, and then songs with vocals, and now there’s an album, A Song for Paul, featuring the whole crew. This past evening they played the album release show to a huge crowd spread across the lawn at Bryant Park.

Applebaum turns out to be a beast of a lead guitarist, switching from evilly feathery tremolo-picking, to enigmatically sunbaked, scorchingly resonant lines, incisive funk and even some icily revertoned, surf-tinged riffs. The horn section – Rich Siebert on trumpet, James Kelly on trombone and Stephen Chen baritone sax, the latter being the most prominent in the mix – were as tight as the harmonies of the three women fronting the band with an unselfconscious, down-to-earth passion and intenstiy. Lo Gwynn, Romi Hanoch and Megan Mancini twirled and kept the groove going on tambourine as they sang, while second guitarist Josh Park played purposeful chords and oldschool soul licks on his Gibson SG, often trading off or intertwining with the bandleader and his Strat. Bassist Julian Applebaum and drummer Kyle Beach handled the tricky rhythmic shifts seamlessly.

The best of the songs was the darkest one, possibly titled Evil Mind. There were a handful with a galloping Afrobeat rhythm, another with a qawalli-inflected, circling pace and plenty with a swinging straight-up psychedelic funk groove. With all the textures simmering onstage, they didn’t need a keyboardist. Not much chatter with the crowd, no band intros – for all we know, the lineup could still be in flux – just one hypnotic, undulating, sometimes cinematically shifting tune after another. Their next gig is this Halloween at 9 PM at Rough Trade; cover is $12.

 

Live Music Calendar for New York City and Brooklyn for August and September 2019

Daily updates – if you go out a lot, you might want to bookmark this page and check back regularly. Believe it or not, some of this year’s free summer concert series schedules are still being tweaked – you’ll see the good stuff on this page.

If you’re leaving your hood, don’t get stuck waiting for a train that never comes, make sure you check http://www.mta.info for service changes considering how unreliable the subway is at night and on the weekend.

If you don’t recognize a venue where a particular act is playing, check the comprehensive, recently updated list of over 200 New York City music venues at New York Music Daily’s sister blog Lucid Culture.

This is not a list of every show in town – it’s a carefully handpicked selection. If this calendar seems short on praise for bands and artists, it’s because every act here is recommended if you like their particular kind of music. Many different styles to choose from.

Showtimes listed here are set times, not the time doors open – if a listing says something like “9ish,” that means it’ll probably start later than advertised. If you see a show listed without the start time, that’s because either the artist, their publicist or the venue in question sent incomplete info – those acts are usually listed last on a particular date.  Always best to check with the venue for the latest information on set times and door charges, since that information is often published here weeks in advance.

If you see a typo or an extra comma or something like that, remember that while you were out seeing that great free concert that you found out about here, somebody was up late after a long day of work editing and adding listings to this calendar ;)

Weekly events first followed by the daily calendar:

August 5 through 11 the annual Drive East Festival of Indian music and classical arts at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, features both iconic artists seldom heard outside India as well as cutting-edge new talent. Individual concert listings are in the calendar below; tickets are relatively cheap (no more than $30, often less), and the level of talent is breathtaking. Very highly recommended.

On select Wednesdays and Sundays, an intimate, growing piano music salon on the Upper West Side featuring iconoclastically insightful, lyrical pianist Nancy Garniez – a cult favorite with an extraordinarily fluid, singing, legato style – exploring the delicious minutiae of works from across the centuries, beverages and lively conversation included! sug donemail for details/address

Mondays at 7 PM multi-instrumentalist Dennis Lichtman’s popular western swing band Brain Cloud at Barbes followed at 9:30 PM by a variety of tropical bands playing cumbias, boogaloo, salsa, maybe all of the above.

Mondays at the Jazz Standard it’s all Mingus, whether with the Mingus Orchestra, Big Band or Mingus Dynasty: as jazz goes, it’s arguably the most exhilarating show of the week, every week. The first-rate players always rise to the level of the material. Sets 7:30/9:30 PM, $25 and worth it.

Mondays at the Vanguard the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra – composer Jim McNeely’s reliably good big band vehicle – plays 9/11 PM, $35 per set plus drink minimum.

Mondays at 10 PM noir guitar legend Jim Campilongo leads his trio at the big room at the Rockwood, $10

Mondays starting at around 10:45 PM Rev. Vince Anderson and his band play two sets at Union Pool. The Rev. is one of the great keyboardists around, equally thrilling on organ or electric piano, an expert at Billy Preston style funk, honkytonk, gospel and blues. He writes very funny, very politically woke, sexy original songs and is one of the most charismatic, intense live performers of our time. It’s a crazy dance party. Paula Henderson from Burnt Sugar is the usual lead soloist on baritone sax, with frequent special guests. Sizzling guitarist Binky Griptite – Sharon Jones’ lead player – is also often there.

Tuesdays at 7:30 PM the chamelonic, playful, sometimes irresistibly cartoonish Daniel Bennett Group play jazz outside the box at the bar at the Residence Inn, 1033 6th Ave at 39th St, free

Tuesdays at 9 PMclever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party at Barbes (check the club calendar), $10 cover.

Wednesdays at 9ish the Binky Griptite Orchestra (formerly Sharon Jones’ brilliant oldschool soul backing band) at Threes Brewing Outpost, 113 Franklin St (Greenpoint/Kent Aves) in Greenpoint, free

Most Thursdays at 8:30, the Brooklyn Raga Massive – a rotating cast of A-list Indian, jazz and rock musicians who love to jam out classic Indian themes from over the centuries to the present day – play the Jalopy, $15 adv tix at the bar at the main space. Tons of special guests followed by a wild raga jam!

Fridays and Saturdays at 5 PM adventurous indie classical string quartet Ethel plus frequent special guests playing a mix of classical and more contemporary material at the balcony bar at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, free w/museum adm

Fridays at 7:30 PM tenor saxophonist Ken Fowser leads his band at the Django. Jukebox jazz in a JD Allen vein but not as dark and more straight-ahead/groove-oriented: as postbop party music goes, nobody’s writing better than this guy right now.

Free classical concerts on Saturdays at 4 PM at Bargemusic;  usually solo piano or small chamber ensembles. If you get lucky, you’ll catch pyrotechnic violinist/music director Mark Peskanov and/or the many members of his circle. Early arrival advised.

Saturdays in August at 6 PM mesmerizing oudist  Brian Prunka plays with a series of Middle Eastern groups at Barbes

Sundays at 9:30 PM paradigm-shifting Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel leads his band at Barbes – check the club calendar just to make sure.

8/1, noon eclectic Texas acoustic blues guitarist Ruthie Foster at Metrotech Park in downtown Brooklyn

8/1, 5 PM ferociously powerful, politically fearless southern gothic guitar/banjo player Amythyst Kiah at Wagner Park on the river north and west of Battery Park

8/1, 6:30 PM oldschool salsa jazz with Yunior Terry & Son De Altura under the Manhattan Bridge archway in Dumbo

8/1, 6:30 PM tuneful purist postbop player Jocelyn Gould on guitar with Louie Leager on bass and Sarah Gooch on drums at the Bar Next Door

8/1, 7:30 PM summery Brazilian samba chanteuse Tulipa Ruiz at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

8/1, 7:30 PM purist oldschool tenor sax player Craig Handy leads an organ quartet with Kyle Kohler on the B3 at Smalls – interesting change of pace

8/1, 8 PM dark, savagely brilliant guitarist Ava Mendoza in a rare solo show at the Old American Can Factory, 232 3rd St., Gowanus, $15 cash only at the door, space limited, RSVP to reserve your ticket,  She says the punk band on after her are fun too

8/1, 8 PM New York’s most charismatic, darkly compelling lyrical songwriter/storyteller/keyboard genius Rachelle Garniez at Barbes

8/1, 8 PM ferocious psychedelic guitarist Debra Devi at FM Jersey City, $10

8/1, 8 PM oldschool style jazz chanteuse Yuka Mito leads her quartet at Club Bonafide, $20

8/1, 8 PM klezmer-jazz piano ico Anthony Coleman leads a trio Happy Lucky No. 1 Gallery, $20. He’s there the following night solo, same deal

8/1-4, 8/10:30 PM shadowy, cinematic bassist Avishai Cohen leads a trio with Shai Maestro on piano and Mark Guiliana on drums at the Blue Note, $20 standing room avail

8/1, 9 PM catchy, edgy, darkly kinetic female-fronted Romany-tinged rock band the Trouble with Kittens  followed by explosive, creepy, colorful psychedelic rembetiko metal band Greek Judas  at Niagara, Ave. A and 7th st.

8/1, 9 PM bassist Jeong Lim Yang’s quartet with Oscar Noriega on reeds at Bar Lunatico. Counterintuitive, thoughtful, unpredictably interesting.

8/1-4, 11:30 PM charming/badass eclectic jazz vocal trio the Ladybugs at Dizzy’s Club, $5. Their Disney covers from across the decades have surprising bite.

8/1 menacingly orchestral metal band Doomstress at Lucky 13 Saloon

8/2. 6 PM classical ensemble the Harlem Quartet play a program TBA at Bryant Park

8/2, 6 PM propulsive coastal Afro-Honduran sounds with the Garifuna Collective plus a dance troupe at Crotona Park

8/2, 7 PM a rare program of Japanese music for koto and reeds with clarinet wizard Thomas Piercy and ensemble at Spectrum, $15

8/2-3, 7:30 PM the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra with soloist Pierre-Laurent Aimard play Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 and Schubert’s Symphony No. 9 at Avery Fisher Hall, $35

8/2-3,7:30 PM low-key oldschool postbop rapture: saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, ageless pianist George Cables & bassist Ugonna Okegwo at Mezzrow, $25

8/2, 8 PM a live performance of new Christopher Cerrone song cycles by soprano Lindsay Kesselman, vocalist Theo Bleckmann, and a chamber choir, accompanied by Wild Up under Christopher Rountree at Arete Gallery, $20 includes copy of the new cd

8/2. 9 PM quirky, whirling, string-driven chamber pop/art-rock band Gadadu at Pete’s

8/2, 9 PM Brandi & the Alexanders play oldschool-style soul ballads at the Way Station

8/2, 9:30 PM, repeating 8/4 at 7 the Ryoma Quartet put a high voltage spin on traditional Japanese sounds wih tsugaru-shamisen, shinobue flute, tsuzumi drum, and a violin at Joe’s Pub, $20

8/2, 9:45 PM perennially entertaining first wave-style punks the Car Bomb Parade play the album release show for their new one, followed by female-fronted screamers Sister Munch and the evern louder, food-fixated But, Pyrite at the Gutter, $10

8/2, 10 PM ex-Chicha Libre keyboard sorcerer Josh Camp’s wryly psychedelic cumbia/tropicalia/dub band Locobeach at Barbes

8/2, 10:30 PM  tuneful oldschool soul/jazz trombonist Dave Gibson leads his quintet at the Fat Cat

8/2-3, 10:30 PM sizzling postbop saxophonist Mike DiRubbo leads a killer quartet with Brian Charette on piano at Smalls. Expect more thrills than subtlety.

8/3, 2 PM ish brass band madness, outdoors: the L Train Brass Band (which apparently IS running this weekend, unlike its namesake), Brass Queens, Brooklyn’s original punk Balkan horn group Hungry March Band, and eclectic quartet Trumpet Marmalade at Good Life Garden, 50 Goodwin Pl, (off Grove; J to Gates Ave) in Bushwick, sug don. “The garden festivities will conclude with a NOLA-flavored second line processional to Queens Brewery for the official afterparty.”

8/3, 6 PM one of New York’s most eclectic, interesting oudists, Brian Prunka followed at 8 by torchy, slyly lyrical, historically-fixated retro Americana songwriter Robin Aigner & Parlour Game and at 10 by epic ranchera/bolero brass crew Banda de los Muertos at Barbes

8/3, 6 PM legendary hip-hop dj Funk Flex celebrates his bday and EPMD celebrate the 30th anniversary of their 1989 classic Unfinished Business at Crotona Park

8/3, 6 PM 70s soul nostalgia with what’s left of the Stylistics, the Manhattans, and Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes (minus the late great Philly soul bandleader) at the Amphitheatre at Coney Island, free, be aware that this is a corporate venue and security is extremely hostile

8/3, 7 PM rising star sitarist Abhik Mukherjee with Dibyarka Chatterjee on tabla at the Chhandayan Center for Indian Music  $16

8/3. 7 PM the Post-Haste Reed Duo play the album release show for their playful, charming new one at Spectrum,

8/3, 7ish politically fearess Taiwanese guy/girl piano pop duo Tizzy Bac at Central Park Summerstage

8/3, 8ish  legendary, intense former Come bandleader and haunting indie-psych guitarist Thalia Zedek’s E followed by ageless mostly-female CB’s era funk-punk/postrockers the Bush Tetras playing the album release show for their new one at the Mercury, $15

8/3, 8:30 PM Rachel Koblyakov “sets out to explore the various polyphonic and lyrical possibilities of the solo violin. The works chosen are with disregard to the composers’ era or the general categorization of their music, yet each piece favors either a polyphonic or lyrical form.” with works by J.S. Bach, Alfred Schnittke, Marc-André Dalbavie, Orlando Bass, Michael Finnissy, Dai Fujikura, and Matthias Pintscher.at Spectrum, $15

8/3, 9 PM surf rock night at Otto’s: swirly, hard-hitting, reverb-iced Strange but Surf, darkly cinematic instrumentalists the TarantinosNYC.  and Link Wray cover band the Wraycyclers

8/3, 9 PM International Contemporary Ensemble play Dai Fujikura’s: Shamisen Concerto plus works by Nathan Davis, Ann Cleare, György Kurtág, Kate Soper and Anahita Abbasi: at Merkin Concert Hall, $30

8/3, 10 PM atmospheric, cinematic drummer/composer Tim Kuhl and his group at Pete’s

8/3, 11 PM slinky downtempo/cumbia/psychedelic salsa dura band La Mecanica Popular at the old Nublu

8/4, 1 PM organ genius Greg Lewis and similar jazz guitarist Marvin Sewell play brunch at Bar Lunatico. Theyr’e back on 8/18

8/4, 4ish hypnotically pointillistic microtonal African guitar/drums jams with 75 Dollar Bill at Union Pool, free

8/4, 7 PM fiery, psychedelically bluesy oldschool soul/roadhouse jamband Lizzie & the Makers at  at LIC Bar

8/4, 7 PM Sean Ali plays solo bass at Downtown Music Gallery. He’s a tuneful guy, this could be of interest beyond the fellowship of the four strings.

8/4, 7:30 PM rappers of south Asian heritage: G. Sidhu, Rianjali, Taizu, Rolex, Robin Dey, SA Grooves, Project Convergence, IMGE Dance at Damrosch Park

8/4, 10 PM searing, intense, brilliantly tuneful Turkish-American rockers Barakka at the old Nublu, $10

8/5, 8 PM irrepressibly sardonic, fun faux-psychedelia and punk jazz with Grex at the old Nublu

8/5, 8:40 PM sitarist Hidayat Khan – heir to the legacy of the great Vilayat Khan – with Enayat Hossain on tabla at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $30

8/5, 9 PM darkly psychedelic/new wave circus punks Yula & the Extended Family – which could be just frontwoman/bassist Yula Beeri and her loop pedals – at LIC Bar

8/5, 9 PM New Bojaira play flamenco jazz at the Fat Cat

8/5, 9:30 PM the Slippery Fish “pay tribute to master Tõno Quirazco who in the 1960’s combined the new sound of jamaican ska music with country twang, to invent a twist on the Caribbean sound. Witman-Cohen – bass ; Myk Freedman – pedal steel; Phillip Mayer – drums; Stefan Zeniuk – sax; Maria Eisien – saxvocals; Jackie Coleman – trumpet and Chris Parker -guitar,” at Barbes

8/6, 6 PM dancers Rasika Kumar, Sahasra Sambamoorthi and Nadhi Thekkek perform their new piece Unfiltered, inspired by the Bharatanatyam tradition, which “explore the everyday moments that eventually lead to the boiling points that cascade into change” with a live score by pyrotechnic vocalist Roopa Mahadevan at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $30

8/6, 7 PM haunting, cinematic lapsteel genius Myk Freedman with JP Shlegelmilch-piano; Jason Nazary-drums; Ari Folman-Cohen-bass and surprise guests. followed by clever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party at Barbes, $10

8/6. 7 PM whirlwind klezmer violin icon Alicia Svigals plays her soundtrack to the cult classic 1920s silent film The Ancient Law, with pianist Donald Sosin at the Manhattan JCC, $15

8/6, 7 PM the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra play works by Rodrigo, Piazzolla, Gabriela Lena Franh and others at Temple Emanu-El, Fifth Avenue at 65th St, free, rsvp req

8/6, 7:30 PM Deepak Ram on bansuri flute with Enayat Hossain (tabla) and guest Kanoa Mendenhall (double bass) at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20

8/6, 7 PM New Bojaira play flamenco jazz at Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City

8/6-7, 7:30 PM the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra with soloist Joshua Bell play Mozart’s Symphony No. 38, Dvorak’s Violin Concerto and Kodaly’s Dances of Galanta at Avery Fisher Hall, $35

8/6, 7 PM  the great unsung NYC hero of darkly purposeful, noir-tinged jazz guitar, Saul Rubin followed at 9 by brilliant drummer/percussionist Willie Martinez & La Familia Sextet playing classic salsa grooves at the Fat Cat

8’6, 7:30 PM intense, lyrical, politically fearless tenor saxophonist Roxy Coss in a rare duo show with pianist Mike King at Mezzrow, $20 Ries

8/6-7, 7:30/9:30 PM tenor saxophonist Tim Ries leads his band (the second night with Bernard Fowler, playing songs from Ries’ other band, the Rolling Stones) at the Jazz Standard, $30

8/6-11, 8/10;30 PM boisterous soul-jazz trumpeter Nicholas Payton leads his group at the Blue Note, $20 standing room avail

8/6-18, 8:30/10 PM guitar icon Bill Frisell eads his trio with Thomas Morgan on bass and Rudy Royston on drums at the Vanguard, $35. Saxophonist Greg Tardy joins the festivities starting on 8/13. Then Frisell is there through the 25th as part of drummer Andrew Cyrille’s quartet

8/6-7, 8:30 PM powerful jazz belter – and Gil Scott-Heron reinventor –  Charenee Wade sings the Betty Carter songbook with her band at Dizzy’s Club, $35

8/6-10, 8:30 PM playful improviser and ambitous composer/tenor saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock,  leads a series of ensembles at the Stone at the New School, $20. Choice pick: 8/7 with the “Grammy Season Sextet” – Brandon Seabrook (guitar) Michael Formanek (bass) Tom Rainey (drums) Mazz Swift (violin) Tomeka Reid (cello)

8/6, 8:40 PM dancer/vocalist Vidhya Subramanian performs a Bharatanatyam concert at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $30

8/7, noon metal band the Beautiful Distrortion – loudest act ever to play outdoors at the triangle at 72nd St. and Broadway at Lincoln Square Park on the upper west

8/7, 5:30 PM the Bryant Park Accordion Festival with the deviously lyrical Susan Hwang, playful Nordic group Smorgasbandet, the latin and Mddle Eastern-tinged Ismael Butera, hypnotic harmonium player Mindra Sahadeo and others around the park

8/7, 6 PM Rohan Krishnamurthy and Nitin Mitta’s North and South Indian Percussion Duo with harmonium player Rohan Prabhudesai at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20

8/7, 6 PM terse, crystalline-voiced guitarist/jazz chantense Camila Meza leads her chamber jazz septet Nectar Orchestra at Madison Square Park

8/7, 7 PM psychedelic klezmer/bluegrass mandolin and clarinet legend Andy Statman at Barbes, $10

8/7-10, 7/10 PM diverse bassist Nicki Parrott leads her group at Birdland, $20. Strong singer too.

8/7, 7:30 PM amazing, atmospheric Hindustani singer/multi-instrumentalist  Arooj Aftab opens for a flameco dance performance at Darnrosch Park

8/7, 8 PM Du.O – Aimée Niemann and Charlotte Munn-Wood playing “old, new, and improvised music on our violins (and sometimes non-violins)”- at Happy Lucky No. 1 Gallery,

8/7, 8:30 PM Dervisi feat. guitar god Steve Antonakos play “exotic Greek gangsta blues” and Middle Eastern flavored hash smoking anthems at Troost

8/7, 8:40 PM Bala Skandan and friends play a Carnatic-nspired percussion program at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $25

8/7, 9 PM psychedelic supergroup the Elgin Marbles feat. members of Love Camp 7, Dervisi and Peter Stampfel’s jug band at Troost

8/7, 10:30 PM intense, charismatic oldschool soul belter Sami Stevens at Bowery Electric, $10 adv tix rec

8/8, noon surprisingly vital first-wave Jamaican roots reggae band Third World at Metrotech Park in downtown Brooklyn

8/8, 6 PM wildly popular Indian singer Binay Pathak performs a program of ghazals and Hindustani songs with Rabi Sanjar Bhattacharjee at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20

8/8, 7 PM soaringly explosive jazz composer/torch singer Nicole Zuraitis at 55 Bar

8/8, 7:20 PM Prasant Radhakrishnan plays a rare US program of Carnatic saxophone with Rohan Krishnamurthy on mridangam at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20

8/8, 8 PM plush, balmy, oldtimey uke swing band Daria Grace & the Pre-War Ponies at Barbes

8/8, 8 PM starkly atmospheric jazz violinist/singer Zosha Warpeha followed by cellist Hank Roberts ‘ edgy sextet at the Owl

8/8, 9 PM the aptly named ghoulabilly/noir Americana  Legendary Shack Shakers at the Knitting Factory, $15

8/8. 7 PM incisive lead guitarist Cecilia Eljuri plays from her new reggae record at Joe’s Pub, $tba

8/8, 730 PM charismatic, theatrical, anthemic rock-soul songwriter DB Rielly at Astoria Park Shore Boulevard between the Hell Gate Bridge and the pool

8/8. 7:30 PM newgrass and classcial with violinist Tessa Lark and bassist Michael Thurber at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

8/8, 8 PM folk noir/parlor pop song stylist Marah Vanbeekom at Bar Chord.

8//9, 6 PM| spellbinding violinists Trina Basu & Arun Ramamurthy‘s Carnatic-inspired Nakshatra Quartet Indian chamber ensemble at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $25

8/9, 6 PM oldtimey danceable bluegrass sounds with Megan Downes & the City Stompers at 76th Avenue and Springfield Boulevard (in Alley Pond Park), Queens

8/9,,7 PM rousing, anthemic janglerock/Americana band the Hawthorns at the small room at the Rockwood

8/9, 7PM ish celtic fiddle star Eileen Ivers and band at Bryant Park

8/9-10, 7:30 PM the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra with soloist Steven Osborne play Haydn’s Overture in D, the Shostakovich Piano Concerto No. 2, Schittke’s Mozarr a la Haydn and Mozart’s Symphony No. 35 at Avery Fisher Hall, $35

8/9, 8:40 PM Hindustani Kirana Gharana singer and sarodist Sanhita Nandi with Nitin Mitta (tabla) and Ravi Mishra (harmonium) at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $25

8/9-10, 7:30/9:30 PM lyrical latin jazz pianist Manuel Valera‘s New Cuban Express Big Band at the Jazz Gallery, $25

8/9, 7:30 PM a Marvin Gaye tribute with guitarist Felicia Collins, sax powerhouse Alexa Tarantino, Toshi Reagon, Siedah Garrett, Kecia Lewis, and others at Prospect Park Bandshell

8/9, 8 PM New Bojaira play the album release show for their new flamenco jazz record at Drom, $15 adv tix rec

8/9, 8 PM poignant, eclectic, lyrical jazz bassist/composer Pedro Giraudo’s tango quartet at Barbes

8/9, 9 PM eclectic Korean pianist/performance artist Hyo Jee Kang plays Fly in Water: A Multimedia Concert at the Center for Remembering and Sharing, $25 adv tix recs

8/9, 8 PM punk/rockabilly band the Screaming Rebel Angels followed by ex-Stray Cats bassist Slim Jim Phantom and his trio at Brooklyn Bazaar, $16

8/9, 9ish Dilemastronauta Y Los Sabrosos Cosmicos with members of M.A.K.U and Combo Chimbita play space cumbia and other trippy tropicalia at C’Mon Everybody, $10

8/10, 1/3 PM improvisational jazz big band Go: Organic Orchestra & the Brooklyn Raga Massive – a rotating cast of A-list Indian, jazz and rock musicians who love to jam out classic Indian themes from over the centuries to the present day – play material from their upcoming triple vinyl album in the park on Governors Island. Included on the bill is their new composition In D, a sequel to the Terry Riley classic.

8/10, 4 PM Japanese koto/shamisen virtuoso Yoko Reikano Kimura in a rare US performance at the Center for Remembering and Sharing, $30

8/10, 6 PM reggae acts from across the years, in reverse order at Central Park Summerstage: dancehall king Elephant Man, ex-Black Uhuru singer Junior Reid, Estelle and newschool conscious roots band Raging Fyah at Central Park

8/10, 7 PM lustrous singer and badass cello-rock bandleader Serena Jost in a rare solo show, on a killer triplebill with haunting, fearsomely powerful soul belter and noir Americana songstress Karen Dahlstrom – and Pete Cenedella, frontman of mighty, anthemic, vintage Springsteenian rockers the Tru Mongrel Hearts at Freddy’s

8/10, 7 PM bright, shiny crystalline voiced oldschool-style soul singer Tameca Jones and her excellent band at the big room at the Rockwood, $12

8/10,,7 PM Ensemble Nikel play works by Klaus Lang and other contemporary composers at Wagner Park north of Battery Park. 8/14 at 8 they’re at the DiMenna Center playing works by Simon Løffler, Steven Takasugi, Clara Iannotta, Mirela Ivičević and Julien Malaussena for $20/$10 stud/srs

8/10, 7:20 PM Sruti Sarathy plays classical Indian violin at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20. She has serious chops, expect lots of thrills.

8/10, 7:30 PM tuneful, hard-hitting alto saxophonist Alex Lore with Martin Nevin on bass and Jochen Rueckert on drums at the Bar Nex tDoor, $12

8/10, 7:30 PM psychedelic cumbia night with the slinky female-fronted Delsonido and Bomba Estéreo at Prospect Park Bandshell

8/10, 6 PM mesmerizing oudist Brian Prunka followed at 10 by hard-hitting, brass-fueled newschool latin soul/boogaloo dance band Spanglish Fly at Barbes

8/19, 9ish the math-iest doom metal band ever, Skryptor, monster guitarist Ava Mendoza’s epic noisemetal power trio Unnatural Ways and shapeshiftingly surrealistic Chicago art-rockers Cheer Accident at Ceremony, 224 Manhattan Ave. (off Maujer), Williamsburg, $t ba

8/10, 9ish acerbic drummer/composer Kate Gentile with saxophonist and clarinetist Jeremy Viner, pianist Matt Mitchell, and bassist Kim Cass at the Owl

8/10, 9 PM high-voltage Americana jamband Spirit Family Reunion at Union Pool, $15

8/10, 9 PM uneasy, catchy psychedelic band Quicksilver Daydream play the album releae show fortheir new one at Littlefield, $10

8/10, 10 PM alternately boisterous and plaintive oldschool honkytonk band the Shootouts at Skinny Dennis

8/10, 10 PM smartly tuneful oldschool soul/psych-pop songwriter Mimi Oz at the Way Station

8/11, 11:30 AM| kathak dancer Seibi Lee performs with a live classical Indian score at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $20

8/11, 1 PM not a music event per se but very cool: Jiva Dance Company perform their apocalyptic Bharatanatyam suite The Four Horsemen: “The stories – a woman shackled to the life of a courtesan (conquest), a woman reminiscing the night she spent with her lover who is at war (war), a mother searching for nourishment for her child in the midst a sandstorm (famine), and finally a woman at the end of her life recalling memories that span youthful joy to hardship and loss (death) – are touchingly timely,” at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $25

8/11, 2:30 PM the rapturous, mighty Navatman Music Collective – this continent’s only Indian carnatic choir, and one of only three in the world – sing their new suite Bridges of Joy at the Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, $25

8/11, 3 PM ish funk-punk-postpunkers the B Boys play the album release show for their new one at Union Pool, free 

8/11, 4 PM the Sometime Boys’ riveting, powerful, theatrical frontwoman Sarah Mucho sings dark cabaret and rock tunes at Freddy’s

8/11, 5 PM cinematic guitarist Pat Irwin and boisterous swing/ska trombonist J. Walter Hawkes followed by Richard Mazda – the legendary 80s new wave producer and guitarist – at LIC Bar

8/11, 5 PM Romany jazz accordionist Julien Labro leads his group at Jefferson Market Garden in the west village

8/11, 5 PM an ACLU benefit for immigrant rights with solo performances by thoughtful pianists Aaron Parks and Shai Maestro plus drummer Antonio Sanchez and postbop saxophonist Dayna Stephens leading their own bands at Shapeshifter Lab, $25

8/11, 6 PM ish anthemic melodic metal band Liliac at Blackthorn 51, $15

8/11, 7 PM brilliant steel guitarist Mike Neer’s Steelonious – who do Monk covers in the same vein as Buddy Emmons –   followed at 9:30  by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

8/11, 7 PM noir guitar legend Jim Campilongo leads his trio at 55 Bar

8/11, 7:30 PM noir Americana siren and Hadestown creator Anais Mitchell opens for a ex-crackhead hanger-on from the 60s who was once in a pioneering janglerock band, at Damrosch Park, get there early because all the old hippies will take the seats

8/11, 7:30 PM chill, purposeful oldschool jazz trio: Evan Arntzen (tenor sax), Jon-Erik Kellso (trumpet), Mathis Picard (piano) at Mezzrow, $20

8/11, 8ish perennially vital latin jazz piano sage Eddie Palmieri at East River Park. If you want to see him indoors he’s at at the Blue Note  8/20-25 at 8/10:30 PM, $30 standing room avail

8/11, 8 PM elegant bop-era guitar legend Gene Bertoncini at the Bar Next Door

8/11, 830 PM pioneering Afro-punk bass player Felice  Rosser of Faith followed by eclectic guitarist Monica Passin of rockabilly/soul band Lil Mo & the Monicats with amazing vocalist/Americana song stylist Drina Seay at the Treehouse at 2A

8/12 7/10 PM articulate, lyrical third-stream jazz pianist Laila Biali at Birdland, $20 seats avail

8/12, 7:30 PM fiery alto saxophonist Lucas Pino’s eclectic, dynamic No No Nonet at Smalls

8/12, 7 PM eclectic, hard-hitting, lyrical composer/tenor saxophonist Stan Killian at 55 Bar

8/12,  10ish the NYC Gaita Club – a Bulla en el Barrio spinoff – play rustically pounding Afro-Colombian trance-dance music at Barbes

8/13, 7 PM rustic Colombian sounds with the Cumbia River Band at Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City

8/13, 7 PM music and conversation with Asian American female parlor pop stylists Jay Miners, Yify Zhang, the more “R&B” influenced ÊMIA, and pensive acoustic songwriter Sarah Kang at the Museum of Chinese in America, 215 Centre St., $20 includes a drink

8/13, 7:30/9:30 PM the haunting, smokily atmospheric Michael Leonhart Orchestra at the Jazz Standard, $30

8/13-17, 8:30 PM noir-inspired low-register reedman Ben Goldberg leads a series of ensembles at the Stone at the New School, $20. Choice pick: the 8/15 octet gig with Ches Smith (xylophone) Kenny Wollesen, Will Shore (vibraphone) Allison Miller (drums, percussion) Kirk Knuffke (cornet) Ryan Ferreira (electric guitar) Andrew Conklin (electric guitar)

8/14, noon: :hard-hitting bassist Dawn Drake & Zapote‘play latin-tinged funk followed by mystery band Hasta La Zeta at Lincoln Square Park on the upper west

8/14, 5:30 PM the Bryant Park Accordion Festival with New York’s most charismatic, darkly compelling lyrical songwriter/storyteller/keyboard genius Rachelle Garniez. forro shredder Felipe Hostins, torchy cumbia/swing singer Erica Mancini and others around the park

8/14, 6 PM intense retro 60s influenced Nubian funk band Alsarah & the Nubatonesat Madison Square Park. 8/15, 6:30 PM they’re under the Manhattan Bridge archway in Dumbo

8/14, 7:30 PM cleverly lyrical, darkly klezmer-tinged pianist Uri Caine with Mark Heliias on bass at Mezzrow, $20

8/14, 730/9:30 PM  the mighty, colorful, occasionally Middle Eastern-tinged Eyal Vilner Big Band at Minton’s, $20 + 2 drink min. they’re also here on 8/21

8/14, 8 PM intense, purposeful, scorching guitarist Ava Mendoza solo, and improvisational  viola sorceress Jessica Pavone‘s string ensemble at Happy Lucky No. 1 Gallery,

8/14, 8 PM fuzztone-fueled retro 60s psychedelic rockers the Mystery Lights at Berlin, $15

8/14, 9 PM Elliott Smith-esque chamber-pop band the Morning Sea  at the big room at the Rockwood

8/14, 9 PM wildfire Hazmat Modine lead guitarist Michaela Gomez leads her band at Bar Lunatico

8/15, 5 PM newschool gospel with Texas singers the Walls Group & Washington DC all-female classical trio the String Queens on the plaza outdoors at NJPAC in Newark

8/15, 5:30 PM chamber ensemble Leadlights play selections by Debussy, Ravel, Schubert, and Jessie Montgomery.at Belvedere Plaza in Battery Park City

8/15, 7:30 PM newschool Mississippi hill country blues with Cedric Burnside at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

8/15, 8 PM ghostly ambient artist Olivia Block and politically woke multimedia artist Raven Chacon at the DiMenna Center, $20

8/15 8 PM ambitious, perennially tuneful saxophonist Mike McGinnis leads his quartet with Jacob Sacks on piano followed by alto player Jonathan Crompton doing the album release show for his new one with Ingrid Laubrock and Patrick Breiner on tenor sax, plus bassist Adam Hopkins and drummer Kate Gentile at the Owl

8/15. 8:30 PM veteran downtown avant-garde vocals/sax duo A Dream in Red – Nora McCarthy and Jorge Sylvester – at Arete Gallery, $15

8/15, 9 PM dynamic, lyrically smart newgrass band Cricket Tell the Weather at the small room at the Rockwood

8/16, 5 PM the grand finale of this year’s Bryant Park Accordion Festival with Toot Sweet‘s twisted theatrical glam rock, Argentine tango band the Aces of Rhythm, underground Russian rocker Fedor Chistyakov, Tex-Mex conjunto Los Texmaniacs and wild Venezuelan shredder El Rey Vallenato Beto Jamaica

8/16. 5;30 PM sharply lyrical folk noir songwriter Lizzie No at the American Folk Art Museum

8/16, 7:30 PM ambitious postbop with a sense of humor: Kyle Nasser on saxophones with Rick Rosato on bass and Vinnie Sperazza on drums at the Bar Next Door, $12

8/16, 7:30/9:30 PM cornetist Taylor Ho Bynum‘s nine-tet with Mary Halvorson on guitar, Tomeka Reid on cello, Ingrid Laugrock on tenor sax and others at the Jazz Gallery, $25

8/16, 8 PM hypnotic electric santoorist/singer Azam Ali plays the album release show for her hypnotic, ambient new one at Drom, $20 adv tix rec

8/16, 8 PM dusky, rustic Brazilian rainforest guitar-and-accordion sounds with Regional de NY at Barbes

8/16, 8 PM adventurous cellist Okkyung Lee with Ches Smith, drums; Ganavya Doraiswamy and Sara Serpa, voices; Maeve Gilchrist, harp at the DiMenna Center, $20

8/16, 9 PM psychedelic band Annabelle Chairlegs – like a slightly faster Black Angels with a chirpy girl singer out front – followed by ferocious punk blues guitarslinger Black Joe Lewis at the Bell House, $22

8/16, 9 PM Antibalas spinoff Armo play Afrobeat at Bar Lunatico. they’re also here on 8/30

8/16, 1AM ish (wee hours of 8/17) this era’s most intensely powerful tenor saxophonist/composer, JD Allen at Smalls. In his element, to be sure.

8/17, 3 PM potentially scary piano/bass/guitar improv: Ron Stabinsky/Shayna Dunkelman/Ava Mendoza at Arete Gallery, $15

8/17, 3:30 PM dancer Azumi Oe with drumer Carlo Costa & bassist Sean Ali, eclectic, globally-inspired violinist Dina Maccabee, and dancer Oxana Chi with performance artist Layla Zami & pianist Mara Rosenbloom at Luisa Muhr’s monthly Women Between Arts show – NYC’s only multidisciplinary series focusing exclusively on woman performers at the Glass Box Theatre at the New School, 55 W 13th St, $20, “no one turned away for lack of funds”

8/17, 6 PM one of New York’s most eclectic, interesting oudists, Brian Prunka followed at 8 by  eclectic, electric C&W/blues band the Jug Addicts and at 10 by ferocious, creepily enveloping, kinetic psychedelic tropicalia band Yotoco at Barbes

8/17, 7 PM ish honkytonk guitarslinger Danny Weiss and charming singer Mary Olive Smith’s oldschool C&W band Stillhouse Serenade at the Gowanus Dredgers Society Boathouse, free

8/17, 7:30 PM sizzling, melodic, dynamically epic latin jazz pianist Luis Perdomo with Rufus Reid on bass, wow at Mezzrow, $25

8/17, 7:30/9:30 PM tunes to match eclectic ambition: trombonist Kalia Vandever leads a quintet playing the album release show for her new one at the Jazz Gallery, $20

8/17, 8 PM fearlessly relevant, genuinely riveting, populist tenor sax visionary/improviser Matana Roberts with International Contemporary Ensemble at the DiMenna Center, $20. Then 8/20-24, 8:30 PM she leads a series of duos at the Stone at the New School, $20. Choice pick: closing night with Vijay Iyer WOW

8/17, 8ish conscious hip-hop legend Talib Kweli at Marcus Garvey Park

8/17, 9 PM Summer Cannibals – like a good, concise, more political take on late-period Sleater-Kinney – at Elsewhere, $12

8/17, midnigh unpredictably fun, funny, occasionally Lubowski-esque psychedelic art-rock band the Academy Blues Project at the small room at the Rockwood

8/18, 3 PM ish majestic, darkly cinematic surf instrumentalists the TarantinosNYC at Bay 9 East at Riis Park in the Rockaways

8/18, 5 PM the NY Jazzharmonic play a program of music associated with the early women in jazz at Jefferson Market Garden in the west village

8/18, 5:30 PM 20s/30s swing purists the David Berger Jazz Orchestra at Birdland

8/18, 6 PM ferocious singer Hannah Fairchild’s explosive, lyrically brilliant noir punk power trio Hannah vs. the Many at the Nest, 504 Flatbush Ave, B/Q to Prospect Park, $tba. Noiserock trio George Puke, who play after, are fun too.

8/18, 6 PM oldschool salsa with Jose “El Canario” Alberto and La Sonora Ponceña at the Coney Island Amphitheatre, free, it’s a pretty small place run by corporate idiots and you’ll need to get there early to get in

8/18, 6 PM what’s left of multiple incarnations of Bob Marley’s band the Wailers featuring Julian Junior Marvin at Marcus Garvey Park

8/18, 7 PM bassist Max Johnson’s Heroes Trio with Jason Rigby on saxophone, Jeff Davis on drums playing  “compositions by the great bassists and heroes, past and present, such as Jimmy Garrison, Henry Grimes, Charlie Haden, Mark Dresser, Slam Stewart and many more” followed at 9:30 by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

8/18, 7 PM eclectic, sardonically lyrical parlor pop band Orly Bendavid and the Mona Dahls at the big room at the Rockwood, $10

8/18, 8 PM indie classical with the Bent Duo -David Friend, piano; Bill Solomon, percussion –  followed by popular quirky indie rock band Deerhoof playing 80s covers wtf at the DiMenna Center, $20

8/19-23, half past noon haunting, eclectic Armenian jazz composer Armen Donelian rocks the electric piano at Bryant Park

8/19, 8 PM eclectic, potentially combustible guitarist Ryan Ferreira in a rare solo show followed by  noir-inspired low-register reedman Ben Goldberg n a rare duo show with tenor saxophonist Ingrid Laugrock at Arete Gallery, $15

8/19, 9:30ish ex-Chicha Libre keyboard sorcerer Josh Camp’s wryly psychedelic cumbia/tropicalia/dub band Locobeach at Barbes

8/20 7 PM cinematic, lyrical, fiercely relevant genre-smashing saxophonist/singer Stephanie Chou leads her quartet at the Museum of Chinese in America, 215 Centre St., $20 includes a drink

8/20, 8 PM indie classical chamber goup Talea Ensemble play works by Volokovic, Biro and Leroux at the DiMenna Center, $20

8/21, 1 PM the upbeat, oldtimey Ebony Hillbillies – NYC’s only oldschool African-American string band – at Lincoln Square Park on the upper west

8/21-22, 7:30/9:30 PM terse piano/guitar interplay: Kris Davis and Julian Lage at the Jazz Gallery, $25

8/21, 8 PM indie classical chamber group Talea Ensemble and perennially interesting piano/percussion ensemble Yarn/Wire play works by Vivier, Boulane, Oesterle, Linda Caitlin Smith and others at the DiMenna Center, $20

8/21, 9 PM poignant, eclectic, lyrical jazz bassist/composer Pedro Giraudo’s Tango Quartet at Bar Lunatico

8/21. 9 PM violinist Marissa Licata – who does colorful, energetic versions of covers from Despacito to Jethro Tull – at the Delancey, $10

8/22, 6:30 PM Lisa Hoppe on bass with Rachel Therrien on trumpet and Dayeon Aaron Edgcomb on drums at the Bar Next Door, free

8/22, 6:30 PM Bollywood-influenced oldschool soul harmony band Say She She under the Manhattan Bridge archway in Dumbo

8/22, 7 PM Alice Coltraine-inspired multi-keyboardist Rema Hasumi at Arete Gallery, $15

8/22, 7:30 PM whirlwind tropical accordion star El Rey Vallenato Beto Jamaica and band at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

8/22, 8:30 PM Wickedly catchy Americana/paisley underground rockers Girls on Grass followed by a kinda whiny Americana act, then deviously fun no wave/post-Velvets rockers Shadow Year and then the similar but more punkish Dares at Union Pool, $12

8/22, 9 PM creepy, wickedly lyrical, harmony-driven noir chamber pop/murder ballad duo Charming Disaster at Joe’s Pub, $15

8/22, 9 PM flashy, catchy, eclectic Americana fingerstyle guitarist Dougmore at Sunny’s

8/22, 10 PM drummer Arthur Vint & Associates reinvent classic Morricone spaghetti western soundtracks at Barbes

8/22. 11 PM wickedly torchy noir songwriter Julia Haltigan  at the Sultan Room, $12

8/23. 5:30 PM Americana rock songstresss Stephanie Manns at the American Folk Art Museum

8/23, 6 PM reverbtoned 70s style psychedelic soul band the Muckers at Bryant Park

8/23, 7 PM in reverse order at Marcus Garvey Park: eclectic, purist jazz singer Brianna Thomas, South African croone Vuyo Sotashe, the JBs’ Fred Wesley, erudite jazz drummer Winard Harper & Jeli Posse at Marcus Garvey Park

8/23, 7:30 PM flashy highway rock guitar dude Ryan Scott, haunting art-rock cinematic instrumentalists Morricone Youth and eclectic, cinematic keyboardist Frank LoCrasto at the Sultan Room, $10

8/23, 8 PM fiery, psychedelically bluesy oldschool soul/roadhouse jamband Lizzie & the Makers at  Gold Sounds, $8

8/23. 9 PM wild psycho mambo/psychedelic cumbia band La Misa Negra at SOB’s, $15

8/23, 9 PM  first-rate purist honkytonk crooner/bandleader Cliff Westfall and his kick-ass group at Skinny Dennis

8/23, 9 PM wild live techno with sax-and-drums monsters Moon Hooch at Rough Trade, $22 gen adm. The next night, 8/24 they’re at the Music Hall of Williamsburg at 11, for two bucks less. Go figure.

8/23, 10 PM the world’s creepiest, slinkiest, most blackly funny crime jazz/film noir band, Big Lazy at Barbes

8/24, 3 PM in reverse order; alto powerhouse Ravi Coltrane, chanteuse Quiana Lynell, the all-star all-femael trio Reclamation with Camille Thurman, Nikara Warren and Brandee Younger at Marcus Garvey Park

8/24, 6 PM one of New York’s most eclectic, interesting oudists, Brian Prunka  followed at 8 by pianist Lucian Ban and violist Mat Maneri playing their creepy Transylvanian jazz and at 10 by and at 10 by epic, psychedelic, noir-drenched psycho mambo band Gato Loco at Barbes

8/24, 7 PM slinky, darkly psychedelic instrumentalists the Ghost Funk Orchestra followed at 9 by uneasily eclectic tropically-influenced singer Renata Zeigeur and band at Bryant Park. Avoid the singsongey, cliched 8 PM singer-songwriter act in between them

 8/24, 7:30 PM rapturous Indian carnatic music with singer Samarth Nagarkar, tabla player Meghashyam Keshav and Rohan Prabhudesai on harmoniun at the Chhandayan Center for Indian Music $16

 8/24, 8ish legendary 90s Brooklyn psychedelic funk unit Groove Collective reunite at the Mercury, $10 adv tix rec

8/24. 9 PM one of NY’s most versatile, ferocious guitarists, ex-Sharon Jones lead player Binky Griptite and band at Bar Lunatico

8/24, 10 PM wild, colorful, Bowie-esque female-fronted glamrockers the Manimals play a pro-choice benefit at Union Pool, $12

8/24, 1 AM (actually wee hours of 8/25 feral tenor saxophonist Eric Wyatt leads the jam at Smalls. Could be off the hook

8/25, 3 PM the Emerson Quartet’s Eugene Drucker, violin; Roberta Cooper, cello; Beth Levin, piano play works by Clara & Robert Schuman and Brahms at Concerts on the Slope, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 139 St. John’s Place downhill from 7th Ave, sugg don

8/25, 3 PM in reverse order at Tompkins Square Park: drum eminence grise Carl Allen’s Art Blakey Tribute, tenor man George Coleman’s Trio,  lyrical pianist Fred Hersch and eclectic altoist Lakecia Benjamin at Tompkins Square Park

8/25, 5 PM Remy Taghavi, bassoon and Yelena Grinberg, piano play works for this unusual pairing by Vivaldi, Tellemann, Mozart, Saint-Saens, Ravel, Dutilleux and Boutry at Grinberg’s upper westside piano salon, reception to follow, $35, close to the 1/2/3 train at 96th St., deets here 

8/25, 7 PM chamber jazz ensemble the Westerlies with crooner Theo Bleckmann and the majestic, titanically kinetic NYChillharmonic – a mighty art-rock band with jazz instrumentation – at Joe’s Pub, $tba

8/25, 8ish popular 90s salsa chanteuse La India at Central Park Summerstage

8/26, 7 PM trumpeter Dominick Faranacci leads a nonet bolstered by the Urban Playground Chamber Orchestra saluting great events and places in Harlem jazz at the HSA Theater, 649 St. Nicholas Ave north of 141st St., A/C/B to 145th St., free

8/26, 7 PM Taka Kigawa plays late Beethoven piano sonatas at the Poisson Rouge, $20 adv tix rec

8/26, 8 PM boisterously funny oldschool 60s C&W and brooding southwestern gothic with Jack Grace solo at Bar Chord

8/26, 9 PM subtle, dynamic jazz singer Yoon Sun Choi with the perennially lyrical Jacob Sacks on piano at Bar Lunatico

8/27, 7 PM clever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party  and brilliant Danish klezmer jazz ensemble Mames Babagenush at the Mercury, $20 adv tix rec

8/27-28, 7:30/9:30 PM monster drummer Johnathan Blake leads a killer quartet wih Immanuel Wilkins -alto saxophone; Joel Ross -vibraphone; Dezron Douglas -bass at the Jazz Gallery, $25

8/27-28, 730/9:30 PM epically brilliant, Shostakovich-inspired jazz pianist/composer Fabian Almazan leads his trio at the Jazz Standard, $30

8/27, 8:30 PM accordion genius Shoko Nagai and percussionist Satoshi Takeishi’s Abysm at Arete Gallery, $15

8/27-9/1, 8;30/10 PM ferocious postbop tenor sax with Chris Potter’s Underground quartet at the Vanguard, $35

8/27, 9 PM singer Kami Thompson and guitar monster James Walbourne’s fiery, fearless Britfolk/psych-folk band the Rails at Joe’s Pub, $tba

8/28, 7 PM the Brooklyn Raga Massive – a rotating cast of A-list Indian, jazz and rock musicians who love to jam out classic Indian themes  with klezmer clarinet and mandolin wizard Andy Statman at the Rubin Museum of Art, $30 gen adm

8/28 8 PM self-explanatory, popular 90s jamband the NY Ska Jazz Ensemble at Iridium, $25

8/29, 5 PM 90s Dirty Jerz hip-hop supertrio Lords of the Underground outdoors at NJPAC in Newark

8/29, 7 PM slinky noir/retro rock bassist/songwriter Amy LaVere plays the album release show for her excellent new one at the third stage at the Rockwood, $10

8/29, 7 PM Nancy Garniez, piano with Gregor Kitzis, violin; Artie Dibble, viola; Dave Eggar, cello play the Mozart G minor Piano Quartet; Brahms C minor Piano Quartet, Brahms C major Trio at Garniez’s upper West Side salon,  sug don $20, refreshments, lively and iconoclastic conversation includedemail for details/address

8/29-31, 7:30/9:30 PM erudite pianist Orrin Evans leads his trio augmented by guest Kevin Eubanks on guitar at the Jazz Standard, $30. Forget the sub gig for Iverson; Evans is a throwback to smoking, hard-hitting 50s postbop glory.

8/29, 730 PM the Haitian funk band that started it all, Boukman Eksperyans at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

8/29, 8 PM 7 PM the Underground Spiritual Ground, a new supergroup and Anbessa Orchestra spinoff exploring the connection between African-American spirituals, Ethiopian and Caribbean music followed at 10 by Quatre Vingt Neuf, who do playfully improvisational versions of hot jazz classics and Little Rascals theme music with a rock rhythm section at Barbes

8/29, 10 PM creepily relevant, provocative performance artist Jelly Boy the Clown, torchy noirish sardonically funny cabaret dude Phat Man Dee and similarly funny, smart, politically woke feminist folk-punk duo Dolltits (Therina Bella and Magie Serpica) at ConeyIslandUSA, 1208 Surf Ave (corner W.12th St), Cnney Island, $20

8/30, 9 PM the eclectic, electrifying accordion-driven Los Mochuelos play classic gangsta Colombian vallenato and cumbia at Bar Chord

8/30, 10 PM Nando Griffiths & Kingston play roots reggae at Shrine

8/30-31 ,10:30 PM state-of-the-art postbop alto saxophonist Jaleel Shaw leads his quartet at Smalls. You want adrenaline?

8/30, 11 PM enigmatic, compelling third-stream jazz pianist/singer Alina Engibaryan at Littlefield, $10

8/30, 11 PM allusively haunting, minimalist folk noir singer Belle-Skinner at Pete’s

8/31, 3 PM ish ageless, jangly, purist NY surf rock originals the Supertones at Bay 9 East at Riis Park in the Rockaways

8/31, 6 PM  mesmerizing, intricate, anthemic oudist  Brian Prunka and band followed at 8 by accordion genius Shoko Nagai ’s haunting, increasingly loud and psychedelic Tokala Silk Road/klezmer mashup project and at 10 by Rana Santacruz – the Mexican Shane MacGowan, but without the booze if you can imagine that – at Barbes

8/31, 9 PM haunting traditional Persian sounds with Koubeh at the old Nublu, $15

9/1,  3 PM ish the largescale improvisational ensemble who started it all, the Sun Ra Arkestra outdoors at Union Pool, free

9/3, 8 PM tuneful latin-inspired pianist/organist Bennett Paster at Halyards

9/7, 1/3 PM intense, microtonal string ensemble the Sirius Quartet play works by Jeremy Harman, Fung Chern Hwei, Gregor Huebner, plys original arrangements of Radiohead & the Beatles in the park on Governors Island

9/8, 7 PM catchy, anthemic newgrass/blue-eyed soul band the Levins at the basement room at the Rockwood, $12

9/13 at 8 PM, repeating 9/14 at 7:30 pianist Melody Fader and violinist Doori Na play Wolfgang Rihm’s ethereal score to Miro Magloire‘s new dance piece at City Center Studio 5, 130 W 56 St, $33/$20 stud/srs

9/!4. 4 PM sharply amusing, wickedly lyrical, politically woke lit-rock singer/pianist Dawn Oberg at the small room at the Rockwood

9/15, 7 PM pensively intense microtonal violinist/singer Sarah Bernstein‘s excellent Veer Quartet with Sana Nagano – violin; Leonor Falcón – viola; Nick Jozwiak – cello  at Spectrum $15

9/21, 5 PM ish intense, brilliantly relevant oldtime gospel/Africa Africana music maven Vienna Carroll and the irrepresibly theatrical, politically spot-on Ukuladies at the Gowanus Dredgers Society Boathouse, free

9/23 ageless Peruvian psychedelic cumbia jamband legends Los Wembler’s de Iquitos at the Poisson Rouge

11/8, 8 PM the world’s darkest, slinkiest, most blackly funny crime jazz/film noir band, Big Lazy play the album release show for their danceably creepy new one Dear Trouble at the Old American Can Factory, 232 3rd St. in Gowanus with special guests Steven Bernstein on trumpet, Slavic Soul Party’s Peter Hess on saxes and Miramar’s Farfisa sorceress Marlysse Rose Simmons, $20

The Budos Band Bring Their Darkest, Trippiest Album Yet to a Couple of Hometown Gigs

The Budos Band are one of those rare acts with an immense fan base across every divide imaginable. Which makes sense in a lot of ways: their trippy, hypnotic quasi-Ethiopiques instrumentals work equally well as dance music, party music and down-the-rabbit-hole headphone listening. If you’re a fan of the band and you want to see them in Manhattan this month, hopefully you have your advance tickets for tonight’s Bowery Ballroom show because the price has gone up up five bucks to $25 at the door. You can also see them tomorrow night, April 6 at the Music Hall of Williamsburg for the same deal. Brooding instrumentalists the Menahan Street Band open both shows at 9 PM

The Budos Band’s fifth and latest album, simply titled V, is streaming at Bandcamp. The gothic album art alludes to the band taking a heavier, darker direction, which is somewhat true: much of the new record compares to Grupo Fantasma’s Texas heavy stoner funk spinoff, Brownout. The first track, Old Engine Oil has guitarist Thomas Brenneck churning out sunbaked bluesmetal and wah-wah flares over a loopy riff straight out of the Syd Barrett playbook as the horns – Jared Tankel on baritone sax and Andrew Greene on trumpet – blaze in call-and-response overhead.

Mike Deller’s smoky organ kicks off The Enchanter, bassist Daniel Foder doubling Brenneck’s slashing Ethiopiques hook as the horns team up for eerie modalities, up to a twisted pseudo-dub interlude. Who knew how well Ethiopian music works as heavy psychedelic rock?

Spider Web only has a Part 1 on this album, built around a catchy hook straight out of psychedelic London, 1966, benefiting from a horn chart that smolders and then bursts into flame It’s anybody’s guess what the second part sounds like. The band’s percussion section – Brian Profilio on drums, John Carbonella Jr. on congas, Rob Lombardo on bongos and Dame Rodriguez on various implements – team up to anchor Peak of Eternal Night, a deliciously doomy theme whose Ethiopian roots come into bracing focus in the dub interlude midway through.

Ghost Talk is a clenched-teeth, uneasily crescendoing mashup of gritty early 70s riff-rock, Afrobeat and Ethiopiques, Deller’s fluttery organ adding extra menace. Arcane Rambler is much the same, but with a more aggressive sway. Maelstrom is an especially neat example of how well broodingly latin-tinged guitar psychedelia and Ethiopian anthems intersect. 

The band finally switch up the rhythm to cantering triplets in Veil of Shadows: imagine Link Wray jamming with Mulatu Astatke’s 1960s band, with a flamenco trumpet solo midway through. Bass riffs propel the brief Rumble from the Void and then kick off with a fuzzy menace in the slowly swaying Valley of the Damned: imagine a more atmospheric Black Sabbath meeting Sun Ra around 1972. 

It’s a good bet the band will jam the hell out of these tunes live: count this among the half-dozen or so best and most thoroughly consistent albums of 2019 so far.

Underground System Bring Their Trippy Afrobeat and Dancefloor Sounds to Two Hometown Gigs

Underground System are one of New York’s funnest party bands. They blend original Afrobeat jams with hard funk and psychedelia along with tinges of tropical and Mediterranean sounds. Charismatic frontwoman Domenica Fossati adds flute and percussion to the mix, and her allusive lyrics often tackle important sociopolitical issues. The band’s debut full-length album What Are You is streaming at Bandcamp; They’re at Bric Arts on March 7 at 8 PM, opening for mesmerizing Palestinian hip-hop/dancehall reggae/habibi pop band 47soul; advance tix are $15 and available at the front desk for those who want to avoid service charges. Underground System are also at C’Mon Everybody on March 22 at 11 for five bucks less.

The album’s opening number, Three’s a Charm has a loping goove, Peter Matson building contrasting layers of gritty guitar and sleek synth over a loopy, punchy backdrop supplied by drummer Yoshio Kobayashi and bassist Jonathan Granoff. They follow a brief, swirly flute-and-synth intro into Go, a hypnotic escape anthem for the dancefloor

As she does in many of her songs, Fossati codeswitches between Spanish and English in the sarcastic, confrontational Rent Party, Maria Eisen tossing in some extra spice with her baritone sax over a catchy, psychedelically looping bass riff,. The album’s title track has more pillowy ambience over a stabbing Afrobeat drive, Eisen adding a sailing, echoey solo overhead.

They keep a hypnotic disco pulse going throughout Just a Place, an organic take on EDM with loopy chicken-scratch guitar and allusions to the disorienting, displacing effects of gentrification. Fossati  swittches to Italian for over a looped Afrobeat bass riff in the brief Sebben (La Lega), followed by State of Mind, a return to the gritty/slick dichotomy of the album’s opening number

If New Order had a thing for Afrobeat back in the early 80s, they would have written something  like What’s It Gonna Take. The album’s final track is Nmani, a surreal mashup of synthy laptop pop and what sounds like Congolese mbira music. If you’re in the mood for psychedelic sounds that also move your feet, or party music that entertains your brain, this is your jam.

Slinky, Eclectic, Unpredictable Psychedelic Grooves from International Orange

International Orange are one of the most distinctive, unpredictable instrumental jambands out there. In a single, expansive tune, they can shift between Afrobeat, oldschool soul, psychedelic funk, gutbucket organ grooves and Bahian-flavored beats. Pretty much everybody in the band writes.Their latest album A Man and His Dog (For Gaku)  is streaming at Bandcamp. They’re playing at 11 PM on Dec 30 at Offside Tavern at 137 W 14th St,

While their music is hardly melancholy, there is a sad backstory. The group lost their bassist, Gaku Takanashi, who appears on half the tracks here: this would be his final recording. Guitarist David Phelps’ tune Keep the Blue Side Up opens it with an upbeat, catchy soukous guitar flair, then Dan Stein’s organ solo takes the music toward gutbucket organ groove before Phelps returns to with a metal attack. Meanwhile, the rhythm section – Takanashi’s bass and Todd Isler’s drums – follow a carefree tropical shuffle. 

Olinda – by Isler and Fender Rhodes player Adam Morrison – is a starry boudoir soul jam with more than a hint of roots reggae, Phelps’ slide guitar adding unexpected Hawaiian flavor as Leo Traversa’s hammer-on bass riffs weave through the mix. How I learned Not To Worry, another Phelps tune, is a syncopated oldschool soul song without words, with more of that keening slide guitar and Takanashi’s bass percolating over the organ.

The lively Strut Orange brings to mind steel guitarist Raphael McGregor’s adventures in instrumental southern rock. Freight Liner, also by Phelps, is a more tipetoeing, New Orleans-flavored strut, Phelps’ exchanges with Morrison’s organ bringing to mind vintage 60s Mulatu Astatke Ethiopian funk before the guitar goes in a shreddier direction.

Maracuja, an Isler tune, has a catchy oldschool soul melody over an animatedly shuffling maracatu groove, Phelps’ hard funk lines and detours toward metal flaring overhead. Sookie’s Rhumba, by Traversa, keeps the soul ambience simmering as Isler flits along on his rims, Phelps adding warm, Smokey Robinson-esque lines until the bass signals a shift into bubbling West African territory. 

Their take of Pat Metheny’s Sirabhorn is part twinkling Hawaiian seascape, part Carnaval them, another showcase for Phelps’ sunbaked slide work. His original The Penguin comes across as Peter Gabriel-era Genesis motoring through an oldschool soul groove with unexpected, tongue-in-cheek success: imagine a more original, focused Dopapod.

First Principle, by Stein is a dub reggae jam as organist Brian Charette might do it, with a little Beatlesque psychedelia thrown into the mix. Phelps’ solo guitar tribute to his bassist friend Gaku, A Man And His Dog closes the album on a steady, warmly reflective, pastoral note.

Welcome Sonic Improvements For Another Reliably Good Slate of Shows at Prospect Park Bandshell

The best news about this year’s free concert series at the bandshell in Prospect Park is that the sound is vastly improved. Last year’s booking was as good as the sound mix was awful: bass and drums, mostly. An admittedly small sample – two shows last month – revealed that somebody actually seems to care about giving the bands onstage at least baseline-level (pun intended) respect this summer.

The first of those shows opened with Combo Chimbita playing a typically ferocious scamperingly psychedelic set, followed by a lavishly augmented 22-piece version of second-wave Afrobeat pioneers Antibalas. Of all the bands here this year who could have really suffered from a bad mix, Combo Chimbita top the list because of how much of a swirling vortex of sound they can create. This time, when they finally got to that point – more than a half hour into their set – the dubwise effect was obviously intentional.

Otherwise, the clarity of Niño Lento’s vineyard lattice of guitar, Prince of Queens’ hypnotically pulsing bass and Carolina Oliveros’ powerful, emphatic vocals over Dilemastronauta’s flurry of drumbeats was as sparkling as anyone could have wanted. Toward the end of the set, Oliveros finally unleashed her inner metal animal, a truly fearsome moment. Although it wasn’t as feral to witness as the band’s most recent Barbes show, it was pretty close. The bookers here have never hesitated to draw on the vast talent base who make Brooklyn’s best fulltime music venue their home, so it was inspiring to see a whole park full of people beyond the band’s usual Colombian fanbase entranced by the show.

With all the extra firepower, Antibalas hardly limited themselves to two-chord, Fela-inspired minor-key jams. There were a handful of those, perfectly executed, bass and guitars running the same catchy riffs over and over again without a split second’s deviation while the brass punched in and out. Special guests on vocals and horns, plus a trio of women dancers, took turns taking the spotlight with solos that were sometimes resonant and floaty, or ablaze with jazz phrasing. Dynamics rose and fell with lavish abandon, often down from the full orchestra to just the rhythm section and a single soloist, then suddenly up again with a mighty sweep.

A second show last month was just as entertaining and stylistically diverse. The Kronos Quartet opened with a defiantly political set, beginning with a new arrangement of Jimi Hendrix’ take of the Star Spangled Banner that had the group keening, and leaping, and shrieking, a remarkable acoustic facsimile of guitar feedback and sonic protest iconography. From a stark, plaintive version of Strange Fruit, through mutedly bluesy takes of Summertime and House of the Rising Sun, to the spare anguish of John Coltrane’s elegaic Alabama, they kept the intensity simmering. The world premiere of Dan Becker’s No More followed an eerily circling path; then children’s artist Dan Zanes brought up his acoustic guitar and led the crew through a singalong of We Shall Overcome.

The second half of the program featured the string quartet – violinists David Harrington and John Sherba, violist Hank Dutt and cellist Sunny Yang – joined by Trio Da Kali, playing songs from their new collaboration, Ladilikan. It was fascinating to hear the strings playing loping, sometimes undulating Saharan riffs while Fode Lassan Diabate’s balafon rippled and pinged and Mamadou Kouyate played incisive, tricky syncopation on his bass ngoni, often adding an otherworldly, gnawa-like groove. Meanwhile, singer Hawa Kasse Mady Diabate delivered insistent, sometimes anguished lyrics addressing struggle against oppression and the omnipresent need for human rights for all people, regardless of gender, in her part of the world. The language, considering the venue, may have seemed exotic to most of the crowd, but the message was as resonant here as it would have been on her home turf in Mali.

The next free show at Prospect Park Bandshell is this Thursday, Aug 9 with noirish blue-eyed soul singer Fiona Silver and popular blues guitarslinger Gary Clark Jr. And Combo Chimbita are playing another free show, in the courtyard at Union Pool on Aug 11 at around 4 PM.

Single of the Day 4/9/18

The snarling psychedelic guitar solo that kicks off Les Sympathics de Porto Novo’s  A Min We Vo Nou We (via Soundcloud) offers more than just a smoky hint that it’s going to be proto stoner metal.

Nope.

Instead, it warps into absolutely feral pre-Fela Afrobeat. That the band managed to make it under brutally repressive conditions in Benin in the early 70s is even more impressive. When the organ kicks in, there’s no way you’re clicking through to anything else. It’ll be on the forthcoming African Scream Contest 2 compilation this June.

Some Great December Shows Reprised This Month

Who says December is a slow month for live music in New York? The first three weeks were a nonstop barrage of good shows. And a lot of those artists will be out there this month for you to see.

Last summer, Innov Gnawa played a couple of pretty radical Barbes gigs. With bandleader Hassan Ben Jaafer’s hypnotically slinky sintir bass lute and the chorus of cast-iron qraqab players behind him, they went even further beyond the undulating, shapeshifting, ancient call-and-response of their usual traditional Moroccan repertoire. Those June and July shows both plunged more deeply into the edgy, chromatically-charged Middle Eastern sounds of hammadcha music, with even more jamming and turn-on-a-dime shifts in the rhythm. Innov – get it?

So their most recent show at Nublu 151 last month seemed like a crystallization of everything they’d been working on. The usual opening benediction of sorts when everybody comes to the stage, Ben Jaafer leading the parade with his big bass drum slung over his shoulder; a serpentine chant sending a shout out to ancient sub-Saharan spirits; and wave after wave of mesmerizing metallic mist fueled by Ben Jaafer’s catchy riffage and impassioned vocals.

Ben Jaafer’s protege and bandmate Samir LanGus opened the night with an even trippier show, playing sintir and leading a band including Innov’s  Nawfal Atiq and Amino Belyamani on qraqabs and vocals, along with Big Lazy’s Yuval Lion on drums, Dave Harrington on guitar, plus alto sax. Elements of dub, and funk, and acidic postrock filtered through the mix as the rhythms changed. Innov Gnawa are back at Nublu 151 on Jan 12 at around 6:30 with trumpeter Itamar Borochov for ten bucks; then the following night, Jan 13 they’re at Joe’s Pub at 7:45 PM for twice that, presumably for people who don’t want to dance.

The rest of last month’s shows that haven’t been mentioned here already were as eclectically fun as you would expect in this melting pot of ours. Slinky Middle Eastern band Sharq Attack played a mix of songs that could have been bellydance classics from Egypt or Lebanon, or originals – it was hard to tell. Oudist Brian Prunka had written one of the catchiest of the originals as a piece for beginners. “But as it turned out, it’s really hard,” violinist Marandi Hostetter laughed. The subtle shifts in the tune and the groove didn’t phase the all-star Brooklyn ensemble.

Another allstar Brooklyn group, Seyyah played an even more lavish set earlier in the month at the monthly Balkan night at Sisters Brooklyn in Fort Greene. With the reliably intense, often pyrotechnic Kane Mathis on oud behind Jenny Luna’s soaring, poignant microtonal vocals, you wouldn’t have expected the bass player to be the star of the show any more than you’d expect Adam Good to be playing bass. But there he was, not just pedaling root notes like most American bassists do with this kind of music, his slithery slides and hammer-ons intertwining with oud and violin. The eight-piece band offer a rare opportunity to see a group this size playing classic and original Turkish music at Cornelia St. Cafe at Jan 15, with sets at 8 and 9:30 PM. Cover is $10 plus a $10 minimum.

When Locobeach’s bassist hit an ominous minor-key cumbia riff and then the band edged its way into Sonido Amazonico midway through their midmonth set at Barbes, the crowd went nuts. The national anthem of cumbia was the title track to Chicha Libre’s classic debut album; as a founding member of that legendary Brooklyn psychedelic group, Locobeach keyboardist Josh Camp was crucial to their sound. This version rocked a little harder and went on for longer than Chicha Libre’s typically did – and Camp didn’t have his trebly, keening Electrovox accordion synth with him for it. This crew are more rock and dub-oriented than Chicha Libre, although they’re just as trippy – and funny. They’re back at Barbes on Jan 15 at 10. 

There were four other Barbes shows last month worth mentioning. “Stoner,” one individual in the know said succinctly as Dilemastronauta Y Los Sabrosos Cosmicos bounced their way through a pulsing set blending elements of psychedelic salsa, cumbia, Afrobeat and dub reggae. Their rhythm section is killer: the bass and drums really have a handle on classic Lee Scratch Perry style dub and roots, and the horns pull the sound out of the hydroponic murk. They’re back at Barbes on Jan 10 at around 10.

Also midmonth, resonator guitarist Zeke Healy and violist Karen Waltuch took an expansive excursion through a couple of sets of Appalachian classics and a dadrock tune or two, reinventing them as bucolic, psychedelic jams. For the third year in a row, the all-female Accord Treble Choir sang an alternately majestic and celestial mix of new choral works and others from decades and centuries past, with lively solos and tight counterpoint. And the Erik Satie Quartet treated an early Saturday evening crowd to stately new brass arrangements of pieces by obscure 1920s French composers, as well as some similar new material.

At the American Folk Art Museum on the first of the month, singer/guitarist Miriam Elhajli kept the crowd silent with her eclecticism, her soaring voice and mix of songs that spanned from Venezuela to the Appalachians, including one rapturous a-capella number. And at the Jalopy the following week, another singer, Queen Esther played a set of sharply lyrical, sardonic jazz songs by New York underground legend Lenny Molotov, her sometime bandmate in one of the city’s funnest swing bands, the Fascinators. She’s at the Yamaha Piano Salon at 689 5h Ave (enter on 54th St) on Jan 14, time tba.