Drake and The Strokes may be coming to the National Mall this fall, but there are plenty of shows to catch before September. Give yourself a few nights to look forward to early this summer by buying concert tickets before they sell out and you’re stuck shelling out your hard-earned cash on StubHub.
Purity Ring: May 29 (early and late shows) at 9:30 Club
If the eerie intro of “stillness in woe,” the breathy lovesickness of “heartsigh” or the lyrically honest “push pull” don’t convince you to spend May 29 with Purity Ring, nothing will. Every song on their second album, “another eternity” was made to be played live.
The February release received mixed reviews from “a collection of aggressively polyglot dance pop you wouldn’t be surprised to find on Taylor Swift’s iPod” to “stark tracks that find a middle ground between lustrous synth pop and…plush, cavernous hip-hop.”
The Canadian duo is a sparkling gem in a sea of bland electro-indie-pop with its melodious consistency and swelling bridges – and be sure to listen for “Fineshrine” off their 2012 album.
Rusted Root: June 3 at 9:30 Club
Five words: “Send Me On My Way.”
There are few things seemingly lamer than a ‘90s band from Pittsburgh. Rusted Root is part jam-band, part tribal-funk and the band often sings about religion, but its musical oddities are part of its charm. The band took a seven-year hiatus in the mid-2000s before releasing “The Movement” with acoustic songs like “Fossil Man” and “Monkey Pants.”
The band never received national attention like it did after “Send Me On My Way” dropped in 1994, and even then, the song wasn’t a huge hit. It was only after it played in films like “Matilda” in 1996 as well as the first “Ice Age” that Rusted Root earned some acclaim.
A-Trak: June 11 at U Street Music Hall
Alain Macklovitch, also known as A-Trak, is the owner of Fool’s Gold Records, a Brooklyn-based record label that represents artists from Kid Cudi to Duck Sauce to Sweet Valley.
The story goes that when Macklovitch was 22 in 2004, Kanye West was so impressed by his skills in a London record store that he invited him on his North American tour. Since then, A-Trak has mixed for MSTRKRFT, Lupe Fiasco and Boys Noize. His shows are massive parties and his beats sound like Major Lazer but a little smoother and like Skrillex with a little more hip-hop.
And with lyrics like, “Got your bitch flipping like a gymnast/She told me take your glasses off but she looks horrendous,” how could you not be charmed?
Best Coast: June 16 at 9:30 Club
There are plenty of good reasons to stay in D.C. over the summer, but sand between your toes is not one of them. Insert Best Coast, the lo-fi duo that radiates sunshine and seems to wear a faint, California kush perfume everywhere they go.
Lead singer Bethany Cosentino, whose Instagram reveals her to be a normal twenty-something who loves her cat, Drake and “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” puts on a show that feels so intimate, it feels like you’re sitting around her pool in L.A., sipping Bloody Marys and listening to “Know Yourself” over her speakers.
The band released its third full-length album, “California Nights,” two weeks ago. One reviewer compared it to “a needy, narcissistic LA teen in an ironic Avril Lavigne T-shirt who loiters around the house” and a Pitchfork review noted the love-it-or-loathe-it nature of Cosentino’s simple lyrics and guitar riffs. You just have to get it.