The Big Gigs for April 5-11

  • Updated: April 5, 2013 - 10:44 AM

Concert spotlights on Cold War Kids, Garbage, Caitlin Rose, Bon Jovi, Boz Scaggs, Twenty-One Pilots and more.

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Cold War Kids play First Avenue on Friday.

POP/ROCK

As evidenced by the lead-off single “Miracle Mile,” Cold War Kids have found a way to balance out frontman Nathan Willet’s hyper-dramatic warble — as heard in their 2007 hit “Hang Me Up to Dry” — with a poppier, more anthemic sound. There’s a compelling Killers/U2-ish vibe all over the new album, “Dear Miss Lonely Hearts.” The Southern Cali quartet is out on a short “underplay” tour to hype the record with Modest Mouse’s Dann Gallucci added on guitar. Wilderness-residing, Chicago-bred boy/girl duo Houses opens. (9 p.m. Fri., First Avenue, sold out.) Chris Riemenschneider

 

Eighteen years since its smash debut album and five since its last go-round, Garbage did not exactly make a huge comeback with last year’s album, “Not Your Kind of People,” but it came back on its own label and terms. Bewitching frontwoman Shirley Manson is still carrying the weight she brought to the early hits “Stupid Girl” and “Only Happy When It Rains,” while Butch Vig and his Wisconsinite bandmates tastefully updated the post-grunge guitar-pop sound without losing their punch. The touring lineup includes Jane’s Addiction bassist Eric Avery. Los Angeles’ whir-to-roar boy/girl electro-rock duo IO Echo opens fresh from a buzzing South by Southwest run. (9 p.m. Fri., Mill City Nights, $42.) Riemenschneider

 

On 2012’s acclaimed “Sing the Delta,” her first album of original material in 16 years, Americana singer/songwriter Iris DeMent paints portraits of the important people in her life. Nothing hits harder than “The Night I Learned How Not to Pray,” about the death of her little brother from a fall down the stairs. DeMent’s words are detailed, literate and penetrating while the songs are melancholy and as slow as a Southern summer afternoon — some ballads, a few slow waltzes and an occasional toe-tapping, medium-tempo tune. DeMent, who now calls Iowa home with husband Greg Brown, will be accompanied by her three-man band. (8 p.m. Sat., Cedar, sold out.) Jon Bream

 

Like Jimmy Cliff, Toots Hibbert remains an essential first-generation reggae performer. The sweaty soul man undertook an acoustic tour last fall as he celebrated his 70th birthday. Now the Otis Redding of Jamaica, the man who proved reggae got soul, is lighting up stages with all the Toots & the Maytals favorites, including “Pressure Drop,” “Funky Kingston” and “Monkey Man.” (9 p.m. Sat., Mill City Nights, $26-$28.) Bream

 

Tuesday, Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora cancelled a telephone interview with the Star Tribune. Wednesday, the group announced that Sambora would not be on board for this leg of the tour. It’s not the first time that he’s missed gigs; in 2011, guitar man Phil X filled in for a dozen or so shows while Sambora was in rehab. These Jersey boys know how to stay focused even if their new album, “What About Now,” which shot to No. 1 last month, is a lesser effort, filled with self-important topics. Not to worry. The set list for this tour is pretty much greatest hits plus two or three new ones. And Jon Bon Jovi remains an ageless, charming, do-gooder frontman who gives journeyman rock a good name. (7:30 p.m. Sun., Xcel Energy Center, $17.50-$147.50.) Bream

 

On 2012’s “Josh Billings Voyage,” folklore star Tim Eriksen creates sort of his own Lake Wobegon world in song. Except his place is Pumpkintown, somewhere in New England. Eriksen, a former University of Minnesota professor who has worked with everyone from Ralph Stanley to Jack White, uses a tapestry of sounds to explore the multi-cultural roots brought back to New England by its seamen. Strains of African, French, American Indian, Irish and English music can be heard in these Eriksen originals, driven by his bajo sexto. He’s touring with percussionist Peter Irvine and fiddler Zoe Darrow as Trio de Pumpkintown. (7:30 p.m. Sun., Ginkgo Coffeehouse, $12-$15.) Bream

 

Two refreshingly gimmickless American hard-rock bands held over from the Ozzfests of the late ’90s, Sevendust and Coal Chamber are teaming up on tour to tout the former’s ninth album, “Black Out the Sun” — which is earning high praise from the metal press — and the latter’s return from an eight-year hiatus. Sevendust’s. Italian goth-bangers Lacuna Coil open along with Pennsylvanian newcomers Candelight Red. (7:30 p.m. Mon., Mill City Nights, $29.50.) Riemenschneider

 

Caitlin Rose has Nashville roots — including a songwriter mom who shares a Grammy with Taylor Swift — but she’s more a product of that scene’s hip alt-country underbelly. After garnering a small buzz from her indie debut and tours opening for the likes of the Old 97’s, she is earning bigger accolades for her sophomore album, “The Stand-In,” featuring her potent Patsy-Cline-meets-Patty-Griffin singing style with edgy heartache songs. Texas songwriter Andrew Combs opens with St. Paul music mayor Martin Devaney. (8 p.m. Mon., Triple Rock, $10.) Riemenschneider

 

With the just-released “This River,” JJ Grey and Mofro add gritty, horn-flavored Southern rock-soul to their potent repertoire. Raspy-voiced Grey mines some of the Southern rock territory tapped by fellow Jacksonvillians Lynyrd Skynyrd. In fact, “99 Shades of Crazy” is pure Skynyrd, with the potential to be a live show-stopper, while “Florabama” is Prince party music with some sassy horn work. Opening are the Slide Brothers, a sacred-steel guitar quartet whose self-titled, Robert Randolph-produced debut includes a smokin’ rendition of the Allman Brothers’ “Don’t Keep Me Wonderin’.” (8 p.m. Wed., Varsity Theater, $24-$26.) Bream

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