Friday, March 22, 2013

This week's hot concerts

Circa Survive/Minus the Bear/Now Now
8 p.m. Friday, March 22, Fillmore, 1000 NC Music Factory Blvd. $31.
These two progressive indie-rock favorites have musically evolved, mellowing and maturing especially on their 2012 albums. Opening act Now Now manages to do both ethereal and dreamy and catchy pop-rock equally well.

Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers
8:30 p.m. Friday, March 22, Visulite, 1615 Elizabeth Ave. $13-$15.
With a voice and presence that twists the sultriness of Stevie Nicks and the soul of Dusty Springfield, this California singer could have time traveled from the `70s. She was featured along with the Avetts in that 2012 Gap campaign and became a YouTube sensation with a series of lively full band covers recorded from the road - in her tour van.

Force MDs/Sunshine Anderson/Case
8 p.m. Saturday, March 23, McGlohon Theater, 345 N. College St. $38.50-$49.50.
The vocal group scored R&B and pop hits like the radio classic “Tender Love” (from “Krush Groove”) and “Love is a House” in the `80s, while Case and Charlotte’s Anderson scored their biggest hits (“Missing You” and “Heard It All Before,” respectively) well over a decade later. All three R&B artists celebrate old and new at the “Throwback Spring Affair.”

Natalie Merchant
8 p.m. Saturday, March 23, Belk Theater, 130 N. Tryon St. $44.50-$79.50. 704-372-1000.
The former 10,000 Maniac joins the Charlotte Symphony for orchestral arrangements from her eclectic latest album “Leave Your Sleep” - poems and vintage literary works set to various styles of music from different eras and regions - as well as songs from her solo career, her former band’s catalog, and a handful of songs from her upcoming orchestral album.

Ray Wylie Hubbard
10 p.m. Sunday, March 25, Double Door, 1218 Charlottetown Ave. $17.
A favorite among his peers, this rootsy Texas songwriter trades in country, blues, folk, and rock but does it all with the edge of a seasoned singer-songwriter that’s lived the kinds of colorful stories he tells.

8 p.m. Thursday, March 28, Tremont, 400 W. Tremont Ave. $8-$10.
With it’s simple duo makeup and songs that are simply catchy, this guitar and drums duo (which is half based in Raleigh) easily wins over crowds with crisp, punchy pop-rock that’s as quirky and completely infectious as early Weezer.

The Vignettes
8 p.m. Thursday, March 28, Milestone, 3400 Tuckaseegee Rd. $5-$9.
The loud, messy, free-spirited punk of the riot grrrl era is alive and well in this spunky, bluesy female duo who exhibits the vocal power of Sleater-Kinney combined with a sense of humor and a taste for dark underground garage rock.