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The shows you should see this week

Beach House

Early on, Beach House drew a lot of comparisons to the gauzy psych-pop of Mazzy Star, but the Baltimore duo has since incorporated a great deal more complexity and depth into their ephemeral indie pop. On their 2010 breakthrough album, Teen Dream, Alex Scally and Victoria Legrand tapped into a lush '60s-pop vibe that complemented their contemporary synth-pop – a little like a heavenly collaboration between Brians Wilson and Eno. Beach House's fourth record, Bloom, follows a similar if substantially darker arc, as if their studio punch was spiked with dashes of Nico and Depeche Mode this time. Essentially an examination of the dichotomy between life's enduring beauty and its fleeting brevity, Bloom is the sonic intersection of Beach House's various influences and interests, as simple melodic layers are stacked on top of one another to create a deceptively complex whole that shimmers with minimalist intensity. These stylistic subtleties appropriately translate into satisfying levels of bombast onstage. – Brian Baker

Hayes Carll

In the past four years, Texas singer-songwriter Hayes Carll picked a fight with the Son of God in "She Left Me for Jesus" and, despite his lefty political ways, drunkenly bedded a Republican in "Another Like You." Yes, he's that kind of guy. The 36-year-old hard-ass also proudly flaunts his influences: Traces of Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, and John Prine show up in his songs, whether in shrewdly detailed character studies or in the sideways looks at all the shit going on around him. And he's not afraid to let some sentimentality seep into his work from time to time along with all the biting satires and wise-ass musings about hillbillies in love. His latest album, last year's KMAG YOYO, includes a deep, despairing look at a soldier who returns from duty with a nasty drug habit and nowhere to turn. The desperation is made even more real through Carll's hard-worn twang — part shit-hole roadhouse, part front-porch comfort — which he's settled into over four increasingly strong albums. — Michael Gallucci

Best Coast

Bethany Cosentino is a lot like a snotty, self-absorbed teen who thinks the entire world is against her. The only ones on her side are her pot-smoking boyfriend and her cat, and even their allegiances are iffy at times. The 25-year-old frontwoman for the Los Angeles-based Best Coast is also a lot like one of those music snobs whose achingly hip collection includes plenty of girl-group nuggets from the '60s, like the Shangri-Las and the Ronettes. On Best Coast's second album, The Only Place, Cosentino proudly plays these parts, and annoyingly so at times. But she's also a sharp songwriter who, along with bandmate Bobb Bruno and producer Jon Brion, shape The Only Place into one of the year's fizziest listens. Like on 2010's debut Crazy for You, she aims her gaze mostly inward on the new record – check out "Why I Cry," "My Life," and "Dreaming My Life Away" – but Cosentino delivers the songs with crowd-pleasing helpings of cavernous echo, too-cool-for-school detachment, and beach-rock flair. – Gallucci

Carolina Chocolate Drops

This North Carolina quartet rolls elements of funk, jazz, blues, rock, R&B, bluegrass, folk, and country into a singular exploration of old-timey black string-band music, creating a sound that falls somewhere between traditional homage and modern revisionism. Their latest album, Leaving Eden, adds some interesting facets to this musical mix, including beatboxing, proving once again that Carolina Chocolate Drops aren’t redefining black music – they’re reinforcing the fact that music is colorblind. 8 p.m. Friday. Cain Park. Tickets: $20-$28. — Brian Baker

Rod Stewart/Stevie Nicks

After spending the past decade reworking creaky standards that were all the rage back when your grandpa could get an erection, it's about time for Stewart to prove that rock-legend title he earned years ago. Looks like we'll have to wait a little longer: His next album is a Christmas record featuring some star-studded duets. Stevie Nicks returned last year with the so-so In Your Dreams, her first record in a decade. But this double-bill tour should be stuffed with their old hits, which is just fine by us. 7:30 p.m. Friday. Quicken Loans Arena. Tickets: $49.50-$149.50. — Gallucci

Seal/Macy Gray

These two raspy-throated soul singers recently put down their pens to lend their distinctive voices to other artists' songs. On Seal's second offering of covers, Soul 2, he takes on songs like Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” and Smokey Robinson and the Miracles’ “Ooh Baby Baby.” On Covered, a measurably more mature-voiced Gray survives a couple of grossly mismatched duets with C-list rappers to deliver some interesting takes on material from Eurythmics, Metallica, and Radiohead, among others. 8 p.m. Saturday. Cain Park. Tickets: $45-$75. — Duane Verh

Dawes

More than any other of the modern-day groups that they're often lumped in with, this Los Angeles quartet captures both the Band's spirit and their sound. Led by a pair of bearded brothers who pal around with Jackson Browne, Dawes play laid-back Laurel Canyon rock with a bit of guitar-powered grit. Their latest album, last year's Nothing Is Wrong, features dusty, sun-kissed Americana filtered through the windshield of 40-plus years of rock & roll. They take a few more detours onstage. With Jonny Corndawg. 8 p.m. Monday. Beachland Ballroom. Tickets: $22, $20.50 in advance. — Gallucci

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Staff Pick Events

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    • Thu., Aug. 25
  • Drew Michael @ Hilarities Comedy Club

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