Critics' Picks, May 28 – June 3 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Picks, May 28 – June 3

Shows by Sinkane, Tame Impala and Sebadoh, plus the Pittsburgh Record Fest finds a new home

click to enlarge Sinkane
Photo courtesy of Erez Avissar


Ahmed Gallab is a chameleonic musician: he's surrounded himself with so many different collaborators and types of music, it can be impossible to predict where a track might be headed. When he's recording as Sinkane, one song can channel free jazz, funk or even some country-flavored steel guitar — but most of it occurs under the umbrella of synth-driven pop. The Sudanese DFA Records signee has played in-studio with a handful of big-ticket indie acts, including Caribou, Yeasayer and Of Montreal, but his work as Sinkane takes these artists' experimental sensibilities a few steps further. He performs tonight at Cattivo with Diamond Shapes and Different Places in SPACE. Shawn Cooke 7 p.m. 146 44th St., Lawrenceville. $10. 21 and over. 412-687-2157 or


By now, serious and casual record collectors alike know that, when it comes around twice a year, the Pittsburgh Record Fest is the place to be.  The event had become a staple at Belvedere's, which hosted the first 12 rounds. But, while that bar recovers from the fire that closed its doors last December, the record swap takes up residence at a new Lawrenceville venue, Spirit. There will be plenty of opportunities to buy, sell and trade records with collectors from all over the city; the night also offers live DJ's, drink specials and — with the backdrop of Spirit's hip retro décor and wood-paneled walls — a little trip back in time. Margaret Welsh 7 p.m. 242 51st St., Lawrenceville. $3. Email for information.



Kevin Parker's an introverted studio wizard, so fronting one of the world's soon-to-be biggest rock bands might seem outside of his comfort zone. As he put it in a recent Reddit AMA, "I record music under the name Tame Impala. When you add 4 of my friends we're a band that tours the world together." Parker does it all in the studio — playing every instrument — and based on what we've heard from the forthcoming Currents, he's adding some welcome electropop and R&B wrinkles to the mix. If 2012's Lonerism put Tame Impala on the map in a big way, then Currents might make Parker a reluctant star. Tonight, the band takes Stage AE with Kuroma. SC 7 p.m. 400 N Shore Drive, North Shore. $25. 412-229-5483 or


Unlikely indie-rock mainstay Sebadoh has been the rare band to turn a series of reunion tours into new music. 2013's Defend Yourself, the band's first LP in 14 years, proved that Lou Barlow's Dinosaur Jr. escape hatch still had some life in it. J Mascis and Barlow eventually settled their differences for a remarkable late-career run, so it only made sense for Barlow to recapture some of that spark for himself while Dinosaur Jr. takes a brief pause. Sebadoh plays Brillobox tonight with support from Total Babes. SC 9:30 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Lawrenceville. $16-18. 412-621-4900 or

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