KC concerts, April 13-19: Jane Lee Hooker, David Nail, Larkin Poe, Calliope Musicals
Thursday, April 13, at Kanza Hall
“Askin’ Bout You,” Blaire Hanks’ startling new single, sounds little like the fare heard on contemporary country radio stations. Instead, the song bears a striking resemblance to the icy musical backdrops regularly employed by hip-hop giant Drake and acerbic pop star The Weeknd. Only Hanks’ thick drawl correlates “Askin’ Bout You” to country music. By boldly repurposing the dominant production style of 2017, Hanks has further blurred the increasingly indistinct line that separates country from pop.
8 p.m. Thursday, April 13. Kanza Hall. 913-451-0444. oneblocksouthkc.com. $8 in advance.
Jane Lee Hooker
Thursday, April 13, at Knuckleheads
Only the most churlish blues traditionalist wouldn’t appreciate Jane Lee Hooker’s cheeky interpretation of the Muddy Waters composition “Mannish Boy.” The Brooklyn-based band of five women cleverly subverts gender stereotypes in the celebration of male virility about a “natural-born lover’s man.” Informed by the snarling hard rock of bands like Guns N’ Roses, Jane Lee Hooker’s burly blues is precisely the sort of vigorous party music that Kansas City blues-rock audiences adore. With Kalo.
7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 13. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $10 in advance.
Friday, April 14, at the Sprint Center
John Mayer’s Search for Everything tour is designed to appease his vastly different constituencies. Mayer will play a solo set, front a full band and jam with bassist Pino Palladino and drummer Steve Jordan in a trio format at the Sprint Center on Friday. Although he once seemed like an oversexed update of light-rock heavyweight James Taylor on early hits, including “Your Body Is a Wonderland,” he has since demonstrated that he’s also a fine blues guitarist and a reliable purveyor of gauzy R&B.
7:30 p.m. Friday, April 14. Sprint Center. 816-949-7100. sprintcenter.com. $36-$96 in advance.
Saturday, April 15, at the VooDoo
“Good at Tonight,” David Nail’s jaunty collaboration with Brothers Osborne, is a carefree celebration of living in the moment. The Missouri native with a powerhouse voice insists that “yesterday’s history, tomorrow’s a mystery” on his most recent single. Perhaps because it’s less processed than the fare that currently dominates country radio, “Good at Tonight” didn’t catch on like Nail’s formulaic 2013 hit “Whatever She’s Got” or his 2011 chart-topper “Let It Rain.”
8 p.m. Saturday, April 15. VooDoo. 816-472-7777. voodookc.com. $32.50 in advance.
Saturday, April 15, at Knuckleheads
Larkin Poe, the sister duo of Megan and Rebecca Lovell, opened Elvis Costello’s concert at Yardley Hall last year with a vibrant blend of bluesy rock and power-pop. Larkin Poe’s powerful vocals and sweltering guitar work are likely to sound even better at Knuckleheads, when the sisters serve as the warm-up act for seasoned blues man Doyle Bramhall II.
9 p.m. Saturday, April 15. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $20 in advance.
Tuesday, April 18, at the Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
“Understanding in a Car Crash,” Thursday’s harrowing song about the physical and emotional aftermath of an accident, served as the introduction to screamo rock for millions of unsuspecting radio and MTV audiences in 2001. The New Jersey band’s momentous melding of emo, punk and metal continued to astonish a generation of admirers until Thursday disbanded in 2011. The group has reunited for a tour that will allow hard-rocking millennials to relive their youths. With Basement, Touché Amoré and Cities Aviv.
7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 18. Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. 816-283-9921. midlandkc.com. $26 in advance.
Tuesday, April 18, at RecordBar
The French-American music of the Louisiana swamps can seem entirely foreign to otherwise open-minded aficionados of rootsy sounds. Sweet Crude is dedicated to changing that perception. By combining the rhythms and fiddling associated with traditional Cajun bands like BeauSoleil with the peppy shimmer of indie-pop groups such as Passion Pit, Sweet Crude is redefining the genre. With Motel Radio and Rachel Mallin & the Wild Type.
8 p.m. Tuesday, April 18. RecordBar. 816-753-5207. therecordbar.com. $10 in advance.
Tuesday, April 18, at the Granada
No song in the history of hip-hop is more polarizing than “iSpy.” The 2016 collaboration between Los Angeles rapper Kyle and Atlanta-based whiz kid Lil Yachty acts as a musical line of demarcation. Supporters of the infantile ditty about a romantic quest to locate “a curly headed cutie I can turn into my wife” has divided generations of hip-hop fans. Kyle and his self-styled Super Duper Crew will ignore their legions of haters on Tuesday. With Cousin Stizz.
8 p.m. Tuesday, April 18. The Granada. 785-842-1390. thegranada.com. $18 in advance.
The Spirit of the Beehive
Tuesday, April 18, at the Replay
An aloof man takes his two granddaughters on a hunt for mushrooms in a strange scene in the 1973 Spanish film “The Spirit of the Beehive.” The Philadelphia band of the same name often seems similarly detached. The damaged songs “Ricky (Caught Me Tryin’)” and “Cops Come Looking” on its extraordinary new album “Pleasure Suck” are in the occasionally baffling post-punk tradition of the Fall and Pavement. With No Magic and Tambourine Club.
10 p.m. Tuesday, April 18. Replay Lounge. 785-749-7676. replaylounge.com. The cover charge is $3.
Wednesday, April 19, at the Bottleneck
Calliope Musicals was recently named the best Austin band in the Austin Music Awards. Given the Texas capital’s reputation as one of the world’s most lively music scenes, the designation is particularly noteworthy. The connoisseurs at NPR’s “All Songs Considered” program seconded the accolade for the exuberant psychedelic ensemble in a roundup of last month’s SXSW music conference. Bob Boilen raved that Calliope Musicals’ showcase “was out of control spectacular.” With Electric Love Machine.
9 p.m. Wednesday, April 19. The Bottleneck. 785-749-3434. thebottlenecklive.com. The cover charge is $8.
Wednesday, April 19, at Knuckleheads
Disgruntled country fans are constantly lamenting the evolution of their preferred music. Yet every time they mourn the scarcity of “real country” artists, the complainers are revealing their ignorance of Hayes Carll. The accomplished artist has been featured on two episodes of “Austin City Limits,” but he’s still underappreciated outside of his native Texas. Party-oriented compositions like “Drunken Poet’s Dream” and “Bad Liver and a Broken Heart” deserve much larger audiences. With Band of Heathens.
8 p.m. Wednesday, April 19. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $20 in advance.
A Perfect Circle
Wednesday, April 19, at Starlight Theatre
The first big outdoor show of 2017 will be a noisy and dramatic affair. The sound of A Perfect Circle, an art-rock quartet with storied credentials, is capable of terrifying even the most fearsome beasts at the nearby Kansas City Zoo. The newly reconstituted group’s members include Maynard James Keenan of Tool, James Iha of Smashing Pumpkins and Matt McJunkins of Eagles of Death Metal. The band may showcase material from a forthcoming album, its first release in 13 years.
7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 19. Starlight Theatre. 816-363-7827. kcstarlight.com. $35-$85 in advance.