LIVE MUSIC: Brian Wilson, Che Apalache, Sweet Crude, Neighbor Lady

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POP | Brian Wilson Presents Pet Sounds: The Final Performances
Wed. July 25
8 p.m.
$42-$111
North Charleston Performing Arts Center

If you’re thinking of staying home from Brian Wilson’s North Charleston performance because you’re afraid of seeing your heroes, you should really stop letting crappy clichés tell you what to do with your life. The band that Wilson has toured with for well over a decade is a stunningly world-class act, and the man himself, though increasingly frail, can still hang live. Plus, this stop among the last of his Pet Sounds: The Final Performances tour, so this is your chance to catch a hero indeed perform the best album ever created (come at me). Still not convinced? Also in tow are two more legends: former Beach Boys Al Jardine (original member, lead vocalist on “Help Me, Rhonda” and more) and “Sail On Sailor” singer Blondie Chaplin (fans of Holland and Carl & The Passions — So Tough know this hugely influential collaborator). What the aging Wilson may lack, Jardine’s son Matt makes up for with his flawless falsetto, which is not only compensates for Brian but also perfectly mimics his late brother, Carl. Wilson and friends have celebrated the 50th anniversary of Pet Sounds (1966) for the past two years, and that tour is winding down ahead of Wilson’s upcoming tour performing The Beach Boys’ Christmas Album in its entirety. So, yeah, get in what will be an unforgettable night of Pet Sounds magic while the gettin’s good. —Kelly Rae Smith WEDNESDAY

Che Apalache is a four-man string band based in Buenos Aires - PROVIDED
  • Provided
  • Che Apalache is a four-man string band based in Buenos Aires

LATIN-BLUEGRASS | Che Apalache
w/ Lulu The Giant
Queen Street Harmony Series
Tues. July 24
7 p.m.
$10
Queen Street Playhouse/Footlight Players




One of the coolest things one can experience as a music fan is when a band, or a sound, takes you by surprise. And Che Apalache, a four-piece string band that formed in Buenos Aries, Argentina but also has members from the U.S. and Mexico, certainly does that, but not just with their origin story. These guys are essentially a bluegrass band that has incorporated Latin American playing styles into their repertoire, and that mix creates and unexpectedly sympathetic thread between two seemingly incompatible genres. On their aptly-titled album, Latin Grass, the quartet can handle the bouncing banjo-and-fiddle jigs as well as any other bluegrass ensemble (“Cornfed Bluegrass Man”), but it’s when they slow things down that their music becomes truly gorgeous. A weeping fiddle and a sturdy acoustic six string are backed by a skeletal but insistent bed of percussion, and the mandolin and banjo create a delicate dance that sounds like Kentucky moved south of the border. This is music the way society should be: No walls, right? —Vincent Harris TUESDAY

INDIE ROCK | Sweet Crude
w/ Andrew Hellier
Sat. Jul. 21
9 p.m.
$12
The Royal American


New Orleans’ eclectic group Sweet Crude are one of the few bands that actually do fit into the elusive musical subcategory “hard to describe.” They’ve got so many regional influences floating around their music, like the French lyrics, funk drums, choir vocals, the occasional alien keyboard, Cajun violins, and we don’t know what else. “One in the Hand” might be the best example. It plays out mostly through the drums and vocals, and it sounds like musical theatre. Compare this to the almost-easier-to-pin-down Louisiana swing of “Little Darling,” and you’ve got one unexpected song after another. Sweet Crude’s live shows sound just as exciting as the music. “We’re having a lot of fun playing with our live show and experimenting with production, choreography, and effects,” says violinist and vocalist Sam Craft. Sweet Crude will expand their sound into some darker emotions on the next release. “It’s fun to tap into some more poignant emotions,” Craft says. “I wouldn’t say it’s terribly serious, but we’re being more vulnerable and dynamic with what we do.” —Heath Ellison SATURDAY

INDIE ROCK | Neighbor Lady
w/ Dear Blanca, The Mammoths
Thurs. Jul. 19
9 p.m.
$10
The Royal American


Neighbor Lady’s debut album Maybe Later is chill mix of post-punk revival, R&B, country, and indie. The LP is one of those listens that meshes influence in a way that only makes them recognizable when a song leans towards one over the other. “Wring Me Out” is the most western of the songs, but it plays like a lost Angel Olsen track. First single “Fine” is a almost an ’80s new wave track, while “Oh Honey” is a forward thinking neo-soul song. “We just always try to make music that we would want to listen to,” says drummer Andrew McFarland. “It’s a lot of stuff that we’ve been listening. We’re really big fans of a lot of classic country.” The old-school country tunes are some of the more surprising, but integral parts to Neighbor Lady’s sound. McFarland says, “I think that stems more from Emily’s [Braden] songwriting.” —Heath Ellison THURSDAY

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