YELLE, FRENCH HORN REBELLION (Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) You don't have to be a beret-wearing, baguette-toting Francophile to shake your stuff to the tantalizing beats of electro-popstress Yelle. The finest disco pop music this side of Robyn, Yelle's Pop Up debut was flawless, and her just-released Safari Disco Club is equally as compelling. EZRA ACE CARAEFF
EZRA FURMAN AND THE HARPOONS, TRISTEN, THE APACHE RELAY (Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) If you don't already, Ezra Furman is a name you need to know. With his three-piece band the Harpoons, Furman has released three sturdy albums—including the brand-new Mysterious Power—that plainly indicate the Chicago-based singer/songwriter is one of the best in an overcrowded field. With vocals that go from tender to waveringly strident, and songs that run the gamut from gentle folk to bashed-out anthems, Furman and the Harpoons make songs that insist on being held close, becoming an integral part of your life whether you like it or not. It's the kind of music—like Springsteen, or the Violent Femmes, or the best of Dylan—that, once it's grabbed your attention, inspires a deep-seated devotion that doesn't go away. One listen to a song like Mysterious Power's "Teenage Wasteland" and you'll be singing it for the rest of your life. NED LANNAMANN
CURREN$Y, TRADEMARK, YOUNG RODDY, FIEND, CORNER BOY P (Roseland, 8 NW 6th) As easy as I find it to write off the majority of blog-weight rappers from the last three or four years (if you can name even one member of, say, Pac Div, you have too much time on your hands), I can’t help loving the output of one Shante Franklin, AKA Curren$y. Formerly known by his suffix Tha Hot Spitta (or just Spitta, if ya nasty), Curren$y has surfed the crest of some of Southern rap’s most powerful movements, as a one-time signee of both No Limit and Cash Money Records; it is his evolution into the unfazeable rap Lebowski of today, however, that is the most remarkable. Dedicated to high-grade weed, fine women, and vintage muscle cars, Spitta’s lifestyle tunes ooze a rare Devin the Dude-esque cool, while his wordplay and flow are damn near peerless. Jets… fool. LARRY MIZELL JR.