KC concerts April 20-26: G Herbo, Of Montreal, Cash Cash, Leela James, Mastodon
Thursday, April 20, at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
Some of the most persuasively passionate pop music of recent years is best appreciated by Spanish-speaking audiences. Reik, a trio from the border town of Mexicali, is responsible for dramatically emotive hits like “Ya Me Enteré” and “Creo en Ti” that tend to make the unabashedly romantic output of comparable artists like OneRepublic and Selena Gomez seem emotionally inhibited. Reik has been rewarded accordingly. Loaded with slightly overwrought compositions, the band’s YouTube channel is closing in on 2 billion streams.
8 p.m. Thursday, April 20. Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. 816-283-9921. midlandkc.com. $35-$75 in advance.
Thursday, April 20, at the Encore Room
Alicia Solombrino probably didn’t have to deliberate long as she selected a moniker for the latest stage of her career. Shortening her surname to Solo was both an obvious and apt decision. As the charismatic vocalist of Kansas City indie-pop band Beautiful Bodies, the winner of a Warped Tour-affiliated 2013 battle of the bands that led to an album on the respected Epitaph Records label, Solombrino entertained audiences around the country with her enormously energetic antics. Her new songs are indie-dance club bangers.
8 p.m. Thursday, April 20. Encore Room at the Uptown Theater. 816-753-8665. uptowntheater.com. $10 in advance.
Dead Man Winter
Thursday, April 20, at Knuckleheads
Trampled by Turtles became one of the most popular bluegrass-based bands of recent years through sterling group interplay that’s suffused with joy. The latest batch of deeply personal songs written by Dave Simonett, the Minnesota-based group’s frontman, don’t fit that jovial format. Simonett has released his new material under the banner of his side project, Dead Man Winter. Buoyant jams are supplanted by anguished songs of heartbreak on the arresting new album “Furnace.” With the Pines.
8 p.m. Thursday, April 20. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $15 in advance.
Marcia Ball and the Iguanas
Friday, April 21, at Knuckleheads
Globe-trotting members in the audience at Knuckleheads on Friday might consider the strong double bill of Marcia Ball and the Iguanas as a preview of the subsequent weekend’s New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. While Ball is a proud Texan, she has been recasting the upbeat sound of Big Easy musical institutions, including Professor Longhair, for decades. The Iguanas have been entertaining revelers in New Orleans bars with robust Latin-oriented rock songs like “Oye, Isabel” since 1989.
8:30 p.m. Friday, April 21. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $24.50 in advance.
Friday, April 21, at RecordBar
Of Montreal has been devising psychedelic indie-rock and alternative dance music for so long that it’s easy to take the experimental group for granted. Janelle Monae, the like-minded artist from Kansas City, Kan., is among the group’s collaborators and former tour mates who have achieved enormous commercial success. Of Montreal continues to perform for a relatively small coterie of admirers. “Rune Husk,” the cult band’s latest release, signals a return to its roots in trippy rock explorations. With Christina Schneider’s Jepeto Solutions.
9 p.m. Friday, April 21. RecordBar. 816-753-5207. therecordbar.com. $20 in advance.
Friday, April 21, at Mosaic
Dance-oriented music producers work in relative anonymity. As with the members of the massively successful act the Chainsmokers, the three men in the New Jersey crew Cash Cash wouldn’t be recognized even by many fans who know all of the words to their songs. With multiple layers of catchy hooks, Cash Cash’s frothy pop songs resemble imaginative mashups of current Top 40 hits. Cash Cash also creates monumental dance tracks like “Take Me Home” that are centered on playful bass drops. With Eric Coomes.
9 p.m. Friday, April 21. Mosaic. 816-679-0076. mosaicmo.com. $20 in advance.
Thank You Scientist
Sunday, April 23, at the Bottleneck
Capped by the high voice of Salvatore Marrano, this New Jersey band dexterously combines elements of progressive rock, heavy metal and jazz. Featuring a violinist, saxophonist, trumpet player and powerhouse rhythm section, Thank You Scientist occasionally sounds as if classic rock band Chicago is paying tribute to arty emo group My Chemical Romance. Sunday’s show is highly recommended to admirers of similarly technically proficient groups ranging from Kansas to Coheed & Cambria. With Bent Knee.
8 p.m. Sunday, April 23. Bottleneck. 785-749-3434. thebottlenecklive.com. $13 in advance.
Two Door Cinema Club
Tuesday, April 25, at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
In a review of a February concert in London, a critic for The Independent suggested that Two Door Cinema Club’s unapologetically twee indie-pop songs are “vibrant, punchy and impossible not to enjoy.” He added that hearing renditions of beloved tunes from the Irish band’s 2010 debut album provided “a sense of catching up with old friends, causing arms to be flung around the shoulders of strangers.” The trio is touring the world in support of the nifty songs on its third album, “Gameshow.” With Blossoms.
8 p.m. Tuesday, April 25. Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. 816-283-9921. midlandkc.com. $29.50 in advance.
Tuesday, April 25, at the Madrid Theatre
Desperate times call for desperate measures. With purveyors of old-school soul pushed aside by more fashionable hip-hop and dance artists, Leela James is among the vocalists who elected to participate in reality show “R&B Divas: Los Angeles.” With her profile elevated by the program, James is touring in support of her fine new album, “Did It for Love,” a throwback recording that’s certain to appeal to fans of Anthony Hamilton and Lalah Hathaway. With Daley.
8 p.m. Tuesday, April 25. Madrid Theatre. 800-653-8000. ticketmaster.com. $35 in advance.
Wednesday, April 26, at the Granada
G Herbo, the rapper born Herbert Wright in 1995, has a substantially lower profile than his fellow Chicago rappers Chance the Rapper and Chief Keef. Possessing Chance’s brains and the harrowing grittiness of Keef, Wright isn’t likely to remain a secret much longer. “Tired” is among his compositions that reflect the stress associated with living in the city nicknamed Chiraq. Wright wearily raps that he’s “got a .40 cocked back, hollow tip magazine, yeah I leave out the house like that.” With Loogey and Domineko.
8 p.m. Wednesday, April 26. The Granada. 785-842-1390. thegranada.com. $22 in advance.
Wednesday, April 26, at the Uptown Theater
Mastodon is one of the most beloved heavy rock bands of the new millennium. The Georgia group’s resounding attack may be based on the work of rock legends like Led Zeppelin, but its sound clearly resonates with the rock audience of today. “Emperor of Sand,” the group’s seventh studio album, was the top-selling album in the United States during the week of its release earlier this month. With Eagles of Death Metal and Russian Circles.
7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 26. Uptown Theater. 816-753-8665. uptowntheater.com. $32.50 in advance.
Wednesday, April 26, at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
Bishop Briggs, the stage name of London-born artist Sarah Grace McLaughlin, adapts Lorde’s style on the strikingly icy pop songs “Wild Horses” and “River.” With Shaed and Manatee Commune.
8 p.m. Wednesday, April 26. Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. 816-283-9921. midlandkc.com. $15 in advance.