Pinback, with Tim Kinsella
Mid-'00s contemporaries Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie broke through to the mainstream playing a similar kind of cold, earnest rock, but no such luck for Pinback. The San Diego act is maybe a little too unassuming for the masses — no monster hooks, no sexy back story — but the dynamic interplay between core members Rob Crow and Zack Smith has resulted in some very smart, fresh, math-y (in a good way) rock songs over the years. Opener Tim Kinsella is a veteran of Cap'n Jazz, Owls, Joan of Arc, and a few other bands that shepherded emo music into a more mature, musically inventive place.
Thursday, June 14, at the Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179)
KKFI New Blood: The Next Generation
John Velghe & the Prodigal Sons, Amy Farrand, and Hearts of Darkness are among the local acts lined up for this fundraiser for community-radio station KKFI 90.1. Promoting the city's culture on the airwaves can be a thankless endeavor, so throw these folks a bone, or whatever they're asking for at the door.
Saturday, June 16, at Davey's Uptown Ramblers Club (3402 Main, 816-931-3122)
Jimmy Cliff, with 77 Jefferson
Jimmy Cliff has been collaborating of late with Tim Armstrong of Rancid, which is pretty amazing. It's unclear how that will influence the Grinders performance of the unofficial reggae ambassador to the world, but I'm thinking it couldn't hurt. The local reggae dudes in 77 Jefferson open.
Friday, June 15, at Crossroads KC at Grinders (417 East 18th Street, 816-472-5454)
Gin Blossoms never got much critical love, and the cool bands of today never cite them as an influence. They deserve better. New Miserable Experience is an alt-rock classic, stacked with pop-rock hit after pop-rock hit. And who among you will deny the chops so plainly evident in such songs as "Lost Horizon" and "Til I Hear It From You"? I dare you to do so in my presence.
Friday, June 15, at the KC Live Stage, Power & Light District (13th Street and Grand, 816-842-1085)
Summer Breeze: Yacht Rock Tribute
If you like piña coladas or Michael McDonald's husky voice or riding the way the wind does, you'd do well to stop by this annual party, which returns to RecordBar after last year's show at now-shuttered Crosstown Station. Bandleader Chris Sieggen is guiding a crew of local and ex-pat musicians through a set highlighting the easy-breezy sounds of the Doobie Brothers, Boz Scaggs, Hall and Oates, Steely Dan, and various one-hit wonders of 1970s AM radio. The band is tight, and sailing attire is encouraged (seriously).
Friday, June 15, at RecordBar (1020 Westport Road, 816-753-5207)
Broncho, with Be/Non and Soft Reeds
Tulsa's Broncho runs on the twin engines of classic power pop and punk rock; the band wouldn't have been out of place on the much-loved Kansas City label Titan Records in the late 1970s and early '80s. Opening are two local bands that also draw inspiration from the sounds of the 1970s: Soft Reeds (nervous glam rock) and Be/Non (theatrical psych).
Friday, June 15, at the Riot Room (4048 Broadway, 816-442-8179)
Wymond Miles, with Gemini Revolution and Ambulants
Sacred Bones Records is pretty much killing it these days. The label's current roster includes the Men, Zola Jesus, Psychic Ills, and Moon Duo — also, Fresh & Onlys guitarist Wymond Miles, who just released his moody, British-sounding, '80s-influenced debut LP, Under the Pale Moon, on the label. Opening this FOKL show is Gemini Revolution, a new project from Monta At Odds' Dedric Moore.
Thursday, June 14, at FOKL Gallery (556 Central, 913-209-5977)