Saturday, January 20, 2018
Music News, Concert Reviews

SoundCheck: Todd Rundgren among top live music picks

Todd Rundgren

Details: Sunday 7:30 p.m. Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $35-$55. (727) 791-7400.

Todd Rundgren is the kind of guy whose talent might sadly go unnoticed until someone spends sleepless evenings reading articles and watching documentaries about all the records the 65-year-old singer, songwriter and producer has ever touched. It's easy to fall into hits like Hello It's Me and Can We Still Be Friends. It's fun to get drunk and dance to Bang the Drum All Day and get seduced by the harmonies and screeching lead on Love Is the Answer. But don't forget that underneath all the '80s pomp and occasional cheesiness is a true musical savant who has appeared on Nine Inch Nails-approved remix albums, fronted the Cars and manned the board for Grand Funk Railroad. He probably has Patti Smith and Meat Loaf on speed dial, and even brought Auto-Tune to Rick Derringer (listen to Everything from a 2011's (re)Production). Recent live shows have featured Daft Punk covers while touching on prog-rock, soul, psychedelia and everything in between, so be ready to be delightfully baffled at this one.

University of Tampa's Party in the Park

With Matt and Kim

Details: Friday 9 p.m. Plant Park at the University of Tampa, 201 W Kennedy Blvd., Tampa. Free to students; $10 for guest ticket. (813) 253-6291.

While USF hosts a more populous and open free concert on their campus just 10 miles away (see Page 25), the University of Tampa will take over a nice portion of the Hillsborough River's west bank for a more private, but equally pop-tastic and pretty much free shindig of its own. Husband-and-wife party starters Matt and Kim will headline the show in Plant Park. Nonstudents hoping to dance and sweat to hits like Let's Go, Daylight and Cameras will need an assist from someone who actually takes classes there. Each registered UT student is entitled to one free ticket plus the purchase of one guest ticket for just $10. Guests must enter with their student host, so make sure you're attending with someone you know in real life and not buying tickets through some secondhand ticketing website. Get more details at UTpartyinthepark.com.

Stephen Marley

With Jo Mersa, Wayne Marshall

Details: Saturday 7 p.m. Jannus Live, 16 Second St. N, St. Petersburg. $22 and up. (727) 565-0550.

Stephen "Ragga" Marley is entering the meaty part of a two-album journey that initially found him exploring roots reggae on the 2011's Revelations Part I. That album was good enough to win Bob's second-born son a Grammy for Best Reggae Album, but a companion LP, the forthcoming Revelations Part II, will push the boundaries and limits of reggae purists around the world. The recent leaked single Rock Stone is a potent, steamy cut featuring dancehall staples Sizzla and Capleton that unfolds in a mostly traditional manner — until it unleashes a dubstep-riddled dance break at the end. The song is part head-scratching and part genius, but just like the album' s lead single (Thorn Or A Rose with the Roots' Black Thought), the cut is a testament to the immense impact that the reggae genre (and the Marley family) has had on every type of music that has come after it.

Dead Milkmen

With Dead Cat Lounge, the Scurvy, Nerds Raging

Details: Saturday 7 p.m. The Brass Mug, 1450 Skipper Road, Tampa. $20-$25. (813) 972-8152.

The Dead Milkmen have evolved with the times by adopting Facebook and Twitter accounts, but the nerdy Philly punks have not outgrown the satirical, scathing repertoire and live show that made them famous in the '80s and early '90s. Albums like Big Lizard in My Backyard, Bucky Fellini and Eat Your Paisley! found them using a sharp wit to rant and make fun of pop culture (Instant Club Hit) while also scoring an MTV hit by tongue-in-cheekily lampooning underground culture with their single Punk Rock Girl. The band broke up after mourning the death of bassist Dave Blood in '94, but reunited a decade or so later.

Cherub

With Carousel, Future Unlimited

Details: Monday 7 p.m. Cuban Club, 2010 Avenida Republica De Cuba, Ybor City. Free (but entry not guaranteed, based on venue capacity) with RSVP at redbullsoundselect.com.

Throughout the year cities like New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Austin and Miami host Red Bull Sound Select events that bring breaking artists to play unique, mostly free events alongside the specific regions' best emerging talent. Tampa Bay gets its own moment of attention from the energy drink's music curators when the Sound Select Tour Bus (a Back to the Future-esque vessel that transforms into a full-scale stage equipped with venue-quality lights and sound) parks at the Cuban Club to present a show from Cherub. The Nashville electro-pop duo's big single, Doses and Mimosas, is a disco-ready, synthed-out homage to indulgence ("I'm skipping breakfast and drinking a beverage to ignore it all, 'cause ignorance is bliss").

Times correspondent Ray Roa can be reached at SuburbanApologist.com.

 
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