One look at English psych-rock band Temples and you'd assume the four-piece had spent an afternoon rolling around in a costume chest stuffed with garments from the late 1960s and '70s: all mock turtlenecks, jeweled sweaters, faded denim, velvet shirts and fringed sleeves. Lead singer James Bagshaw's hair is a mesmerizing mass of curls, and he usually appears onstage with some sort of body jewelry adorning his face. It's a look in sync with Temples' debut album, Sun Structures, which could fit easily in any record collection between the Byrds and the Zombies. Sun Structures is rather unremarkable as original composition, but it makes for a nice ride of high-and-hazy pop. Count Noel Gallagher and Johnny Marr as fans of this young band, and judge for yourself Thursday night.
Thursday, May 1, RecordBar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
Since their 2005 debut as Dodo Bird, guitarist Meric Long and drummer Logan Kroeber have slowly built a career on thoughtful, layered folk rock. (Long began his career as a solo singer-songwriter; Kroeber played drums in metal bands.) The San Francisco duo perform now as the Dodos, but little else has changed. On their latest full-length, Carrier, Long and Kroeber dive further into their elaborate rhythms. But there's a deeper element to Carrier's intelligent arrangements: The album was inspired by the death of touring band member Christopher Reimer and offers a solemn insight into a band in mourning. Carrier is serious and fresh, and the Dodos have done an excellent job navigating what could have been choppy waters.
Saturday, May 3, RecordBar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
Pete Seeger Memorial Birthday Concert
Friday would have been Pete Seeger's 95th birthday, and KKFI 90.1 is paying tribute to the legendary folk singer and activist with an intensive local lineup. Favorite local fiddler Betse Ellis hosts a night of live music and spoken word, with performances by Old Sound, Madisen Ward & Mama Bear, Danny Cox, Howard Iceberg and Emily Tummons, Bob and Diana Suckiel, Mikal Shapiro, Kasey Rausch, and others. This event is also a fundraiser for KKFI, so your ticket fee is money well spent.
Friday, May 2, Unity Temple on the Plaza (707 West 47th Street, 816-931-3122)
By now, Pitch readers — and everyone in the local music community — are well-acquainted with St. Joseph's Radke brothers. The home-schooled trio was brought up on essential American rock and roll the way most kids are raised on Lucky Charms and Disney, and the band's international success could be leading some parents to think again about alternative approaches to education. These punk-rock princes take a break, from what seems like an endless tour, with a riotous show at the Replay Lounge. With Stiff Middle Fingers and Gnarly Davidson.
Friday, May 2, Replay Lounge (946 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-749-7676)
Spring Fling, featuring Hearts of Darkness
Finally clear of that awful time known as winter — fingers crossed — we celebrate the beginning of outdoor-concert season, starting with the Spring Fling at Crossroads KC. Local Afrobeat funk heroes Hearts of Darkness headline the blowout, ensuring lots of dancing (even if it isn't the spring-formal kind). But that's not all: Expect to hear the sparkling pop of Cowboy Indian Bear, the adventurous prog of the Jorge Arana Trio, a set from prolific local MC Reach and the wonderful weirdness of Metatone.
Saturday, May 3, Crossroads KC at Grinders (417 East 18th Street, 785-749-3434)
Love Garden Sounds Birthday Party
Love Garden Sounds, one of the area's best-loved record stores, celebrates its 24th year of existence Sunday, and owner Kelly Corcoran is sparing no luxury. Headlining is Woods, a lo-fi folk-pop trio that enjoys a sterling reputation in its native Brooklyn. Quilt, from Massachusetts, bestows shimmering, 1960s-inspired playful pop. And Corcoran has invited a handful of Lawrence favorites, of course, including Your Friend, Oils, Psychic Heat, Gnarly Davidson and CS Luxem.
Sunday, May 4, the Granada (1020 Massachusetts, Lawrence, 785-842-1390)