Critics' Picks: April 23 - 29 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Picks: April 23 - 29

Local shows from Wolf Eyes, The Werks, Deerhoof and M.I.A.



Any account of the past 20-odd years of noise would by necessity mention Wolf Eyes; the collective, which started as a trio and has since morphed countless times, was at the head of a resurgence in noise as music and art in the 2000s. Playing with improvisation, toying with ideas of rhythm, testing the limits of what might be thought of as music and performance, and putting eardrums at risk along the way, the legendary group released its latest, No Answer: Lower Floors earlier this year. Tonight, Wolf Eyes plays an especially intimate show at the Rock Room, on the heels of an appearance at Moog Fest in Asheville, N.C. Also playing: Jovontaes, Slices and Blood Pressure. Andy Mulkerin 9 p.m. 1054 Herron Ave., Polish Hill. $7. 412-683-4418


The Werks have their own brand of music that they call "psychedelic dance rock" — an accurate description given that the tunes transport you back to the '70s (tie-dye shirt included). The Ohio-based band, which has been active for 9 years, is part of a movement that allows people to tape its shows and share the recordings — which has helped it gain a following. The band plays tonight at Mr. Small's Theatre along with guests Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band, and Mixing Numbers With Sounds. Kayla Copes 8 p.m. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale. $10. All ages. 412-821-4447 or


Since the emergence of Deerhoof well over a decade ago, it's been tough to characterize the band accurately. Though the band had been releasing material since the mid-'90s, 2002's full-length Reveille came out of nowhere for many: a weird combination of noisy cacophony, damaged pop, high-pitched vocals and often absurd lyrics that captured a confused but entranced indie-rock audience. Since then, the band has slowly expanded its repertoire without losing that energy and drive; tonight, the four-piece plays the Rex Theater with Awkwafina and Celestial Shore. AM 7 p.m. 1602 E. Carson St., South Side. $13-15. All ages. 412-381-6811 or


M.I.A. is known to make a statement with her music. Some consider her too controversial at times, but to others, she is standing for social justice. For example, in her song "Double Bubble Trouble," the lines "Battling with heads / Based on a story that nobody read" are reputedly about the many refugees in the U.K., confronting the government. Beyond rap, she's influenced by world music and straight-up pop. You likely know her popular songs: "Paper Planes" (from the movie Pineapple Express), "Bad Girls" and "Y.A.L.A.," recently featured in a Nissan commercial. Check her out tonight at Stage AE along with guest A$AP Ferg. KC 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $29.50. 412-229-5483 or

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