Two big names in local indie-rock circles that haven’t been heard in quite a while, Kid Dakota and Peter Wolf Crier, both return to the fold with Turf Club gigs this week.
Kid Dakota’s namesake Darren Jackson -- who also played in the Hopefuls and Honeydogs -- is preparing for his first local gig in three years at the renovated St. Paul venue on Tuesday. He's atop a nicely stacked home-for-the-holidays lineup also featuring Alpha Consumer, International Karate and – newly announced -- the Black Eyed Snakes (whose name was initially left off the lineup so as not spoil their own headlining set at Icehouse two weekends ago).
Jackson recorded two critically lauded and locally beloved Kid Dakota albums for Black Eyed Snakes (and Low) frontman Alan Sparhawk’s label Chairkickers in the mid-‘00s before winding up on Georgia’s Graveface Records, which put out his last album, 2011’s “Listen to the Crows As They Take Flight.” He abruptly left the Twin Cities in 2010 to take a music teacher job in his native small town of Bison, S.D. Since then, he has enrolled in grad school at Virginia Tech. However, he has been writing new KD material the whole time and has not one but two new records in the works, with sessions booked next month at Pachyderm Studio. He will debut a lot of the new tunes with new drummer Matthew Kazama of the Birthday Suits at Tuesday’s show (8 p.m., $10-$12, ticket info here).
A teaching job is also partly to blame for Peter Wolf Crier’s near-hiatus, as singer/guitarist Peter Pisano – who worked for St. Francis-St. James United School in St. Paul prior to his band’s ascent to Jagjaguwar Records in 2010 – took a new gig in Toronto after touring wrapped for the duo’s 2011 sophomore album “Garden of Arms.” Meanwhile, drummer Brian Moen wound up living in Oakland, Calif., with the girlfriend he married this past August.
The two bandmates still get together in spurts to perform and record, including a stint in Minnesota this past summer when they also snuck in an Icehouse gig. They, too, have new tunes to try out for fans at the Turf Club on Friday. The show also marks the homecoming of Actual Wolf’s Eric Pollard from Nashville, whose band shares drummer Jeremy Hanson with BB Gun -- also on the bill and thankfully not going anywhere anytime soon, that we know of (9 p.m., $8-$10, tickets here).
Here are a couple reminders of what we've been missing.