Bounce into 4/20 with Big Freedia or rock your cloak for a drone show at Rockefeller Chapel, all part of Chicago’s unmissable music events this week.
Spring into psychedelia with Kevin Barnes and Of Montreal. Over the past two decades, the Athens, Georgia, band has infused their brand of indie pop with prog, new wave, glam rock, and countless out-of-this-world costumes. Of Montreal’s eclectic sound treads into ’80s dance territory on their 15th album, White Is Relic/Irrealis Mood.
Details: April 16, 8 p.m., at Lincoln Hall; $25
Groove to the sounds of “soul hop” with Kenya-born, Chicago-bred artist Tulani. He has been bringing the attitude of hip hop to the smooth tradition of R&B since his debut mixtape in 2013. His latest release, DXTR Ain’t Chai, combines Tulani’s energy with the swagger of local engineer-turned-rapper DXTR Spits.
Details: April 17, 8:30 p.m., at Empty Bottle; $10
As gorgeous as Darlingside’s folk-meets-chamber pop sound is recorded, they are one of those bands you just have to experience live. The quartet stands around one microphone to seamlessly blend their voices in meditative harmony. Darlingside’s latest album, Extralife, offers a postapocalyptic look at the world, if the apocalypse has lush vocal arrangements in mind.
Details: April 17, 8 p.m., at Old Town School of Folk Music; $23–$25
The L.A. duo of Cleo Tucker and Harmony Tividad documents the joy and pain of growing up in gorgeous harmonies on Girlpool’s third album, What Chaos Is Imaginary. The pair tackles topics like distance, change, and mental health with indie-rock ardor, minimal arrangements, and a dose of fuzz.
Details: April 18, 8 p.m., at Lincoln Hall; $18–$20
When was the last time you saw a band cloaked in monk robes perform in a Gothic chapel? Seattle drone and noise act Sunn O))) are giving you the opportunity as they tour behind the first of two new albums out this year. Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson aren’t strangers to Chicago. Life Metal was recorded in town at Electrical Audio by Steve Albini. Challenging the conventions of minimal, drone, and metal genres, Sunn O))) promise an otherworldly experience.
Details: April 19, 7 p.m., at Rockefeller Chapel; $36
If you thought rock was dead, you haven’t seen Gunn play. The Brooklyn musician is as known for his beautifully crafted, introspective folk songwriting as his acoustic finger-style guitar technique. Gunn’s latest lush album, The Unseen In Between, explores the sonic and emotional landscapes of a son grieving his recently departed father.
Details: April 19, 9 p.m., at Lincoln Hall; $18–$20
Waldos Forever Fest
Celebrate 4/20 with bounce queen Big Freedia, Tatiana Hazel, White Mystery, and more at Do312’s Waldos Forever Fest. Conveniently located in front of Dispensary33, the event offers a full day of music, education, and fun for cannabis lovers. The second annual festival is named for the Waldos, the group of 1970s high schoolers who set out to hunt for cannabis at 4:20, forever changing cannabis culture.
Details: April 20, 9 a.m.–7 p.m.; free
Chicago Record Label Fair
Support local record labels and discover emerging artists at the Empty Bottle’s Chicago Record Label Fair. Check out LPs, tapes, CDs, and more from 10 local record labels, including Dumpster Records, Feeltrip Records, and Midwest Action. Who better to nerd out with than some of the most passionate musicheads in Chicago?
Details: April 20, noon–4 p.m., at Empty Bottle; free
Half Acre Beer Company marks the 10-year anniversary of its Daisy Cutter Pale Ale with a concert at Sleeping Village. True Widow headlines the show with a slow-burning, shoe-gaze sound. The Dallas three-piece’s stoner rock leanings are especially fitting for the 4/20 show.
Details: April 20, 8:30 p.m., at Sleeping Village; $18–$20
One of indie rock’s most experimental bands returns to Lincoln Hall to celebrate the venue’s 10th anniversary. Deerhoof’s sound defies definition, ranging from fractured noise to catchy bubblegum pop and garage punk. After two decades, the San Francisco quartet continues to be one of the most dynamic voices in indie rock.
Details: April 21, 8 p.m., at Lincoln Hall; $20