Critics’ Picks, Feb. 11-17 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics’ Picks, Feb. 11-17

Performances by Priests, Hatcha, Keeps and Chuck Ragan, plus Pandemic and Raya Brass Band provide music for the Carnegie Museum of Art’s FEAST

[PUNK] + THU., FEB. 11

Although Detroit’s Protomartyr is the big draw for tonight’s show at Brillobox, Priests, hailing from our nation’s capital, play a dancey yet apocalyptic style of post-punk that also deserves attention. Vocalist Katie Greer’s growls and screeches recall alternative heroines like Kim Gordon and Kathleen Hanna, and the band members righteous ferocity has made Priests one of the rising stars of modern American underground music. Locals Gotobeds open the show. Andrew Woehrel 9 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $10. 412-621-4900 or

click to enlarge Raya Brass Band - PHOTO COURTESY OF APRIL RENAE
Photo courtesy of April Renae
Raya Brass Band

[WORLD] + FRI., FEB. 12

Tonight the Carnegie Museum of Art introduces FEAST, a series which pairs museum exhibits with culinary delights. The debut event is inspired by The Propeller Group: The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music, an exhibit exploring the funerary traditions of South Vietnam through visuals and music. And, while food takes center stage, music will not be neglected: The after-party features music by Pandemic and New York City’s Raya Brass Band, plus a performance by Steel Dragon Kung Fu and Lion and Dragon Dance. Margaret Welsh 6 p.m. 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland. $125-150 (dinner and after-party), $35-40 (after-party only). 412-622-3131 or


Thanks to artists like Skrillex, the term “dubstep” has become a bit of a punchline, but let’s not forget that this throbbing, psychedelic form of EDM actually had a long history in the U.K. before being introduced to mainstream America several years ago. British DJ Hatcha, who is performing at tonight’s Lazercrunk dance night at Brillobox, is a pioneer of the genre. Though there are still plenty of wub-wub-wubs, Hatcha’s dubstep is more subtle and tasteful than Skrillex’s, and doesn’t have the nu-metal guitar overdubs. AW 10 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $10. 412-621-4900 or


A coffee house may be an unlikely setting for a rock show, but Nashville’s dream-pop two-piece Keeps, performing at Black Forge Coffee House in Allentown, doesn’t exactly rock. Keeps is perhaps an example of a band that rolls. With slow and deliberate drumming, guitar lines that echo “Ocean Breathes Salty”-era Modest Mouse and marble-mouthed vocals that sort of resemble Randy Newman’s, Keeps’ music is so delicate and gossamer that I’d be afraid to touch it, were it tangible. AW 6 p.m. 1206 Arlington Ave., Allentown. $10. 412-291-8994 or

click to enlarge Chuck Ragan - PHOTO COURTESY OF LISA JOHNSON
Photo courtesy of Lisa Johnson
Chuck Ragan


It seems to be a common occurence that when former punk rockers become “too old to rock,” they turn to folk music. Both punk and folk have working-class roots, political lyrics and simple chord structures, so it isn’t that surprising of a transition. Chuck Ragan, of the Gainesville, Fla., band Hot Water Music, is a perfect example of this. Donning old-timey clothes that make him look like a train conductor and growing a rugged beard, he has transformed from punk singer to folk troubadour. Tonight, he and his backing band, The Camaraderie, perform at the Rex Theater, with guest Cory Branan. AW 8 p.m. 1602 E. Carson St., South Side. $15-17. 412-381-6811 or

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