.Social Eyes: Week of May 16-23

THURSDAY

THE BERKELEY FESTIVAL OF CHORO

Choro is a foundational Afro-Brazilian instrumental style dating back to the late 19th century that seems to undergo a revival every few decades. Clarinetist, saxophonist and composer Nailor Proveta—the founder of the great big band Banda Mantiqueira—and guitarist Alessandro Penezzi are at the forefront of the current movement. They’ve forged deep ties with the Bay Area Brazilian music scene via the Berkeley Choro Ensemble and Brazil Camp, a summer program in Cazadero where they’ve served on faculty. They deliver an expansive repertoire of classics and originals, exploring a century of choro marked by dazzling interplay, rhythmic prowess and sublime lyricism. – ANDREW GILBERT

INFO: 8pm, Freight & Salvage, 2020 Addison St., Berkeley. $30-$35. 510.644.2020.

THURSDAY

MDC

When it comes to hardcore punk, few OG bands have been here from the start. MDC is one of those bands. Originally formed in Austin, Texas, in 1979, they were founded by wildman and singer Dave Dictor, who has led the charge for speaking his mind through his lyrics. What was once considered his “extreme left” politics are many of the same topics currently circulating in American news, like animal rights, transgender rights, racial equality, the hazards of capitalism and living in a police state. MDC paved the way for generations of hardcore and punk bands, such as the acts joining them at the Crybaby in Oakland: Maya, Since We Were Kids!, the American Dream, Brat and Triste. – MAT WEIR

INFO: 6:30pm, Crybaby, 1928 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. $10-$20.

FRIDAY

DONNY BENET

Donny Benet’s charming dance, R&B and disco tracks are full of fun and humor without ever tipping too dangerously into outright comedy. He has committed fully to the bit—’80s uncle aesthetic, goofy music videos—but his groovy bass lines and clever instrumentation are so catchy that they force one to enjoy his music unironically. Every saxophone solo and each salmon pink suit are justified; despite the light sprinkling of ’80s sleaze, it all comes together into a zingy, propulsive and undeniably sensual sound. – SONYA BENNETT-BRANDT

INFO: 8pm, UC Theatre, 2036 University Ave., Berkeley. $28.50. 510.356.4000. 

FRIDAY

JOKER

For those who can’t make it to Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado, don’t fret. Joker and Bukez Finezt will perform for one night only at Oakland’s premiere dance venue, The Continental Club. Known as a legend in the bass scene, the Bristol-based Joker is a genre innovator, creating what he’s dubbed “Purple Music,” a unique blend of grime and dubstep. Joining them to round out the night is Denver’s own GreyMatter, who draws inspiration from the cosmos, and the Bay Area’s Original Sadboi Selecta, a founding member of BABS Production (who is promoting the event) known for her blending of dubstep with emo and post-hardcore. – MAT WEIR

INFO: 8:30pm, Continental Club, 1658 12th St., Oakland. $20-$35. 510.542.5742. 

SATURDAY

THE INDIGEQUEER TOUR

Add safe-space maker to Howie Echo-Hawk’s loaded resume next to musician, DJ, comedian, producer, curator—the list goes on. Founding Indigenize Productions in 2017 and determined to provide more performance opportunities for Native/Indigenous artists, Echo-Hawk created a Seattle variety show called Indigequeer Party. Indigequeer is now a road show featuring live music, Native drag, burlesque and dance performers, and an enormous come-out-of-the-closet dance party. Come to find home, come to find community; volunteer as a greeter, usher or floater, assisting with post-show breakdown and cleanup, and come for free. – LOU FANCHER

INFO: 9pm, La Peña Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. $15-35. 510.849.2568.

SATURDAY

‘BEST AVAILABLE’

Oakland playwright Jonathan Spector’s latest play has five candidates mud-wrestling for the top job at a regional theater company. But underneath all the ha-ha, there’s serious stuff happening. The former leader has suddenly jumped ship, and stakeholders and candidates twist themselves into knots as they flounder and fight over goals, values and priorities—and how to live up to them. Count on sharp direction by Jon Tracy, whose long association with Shotgun established a reputation for carving out the essentials of a story. Best Available might make a person love or loathe the theater world, but either way, it’s Shotgun at its best: irreverent chuckles, sparkling satire and a terrific cast of local actors. – LOU FANCHER

INFO: 8pm, Ashby Stage, 1901 Ashby Ave., Berkeley. $8-40. 510.841.6500.

SATURDAY

WAXAHATCHEE

Waxahatchee is on an absolute roll. Over the past decade, the Alabama-born songwriter Katie Crutchfield has made a name for herself with her mesmerizing blend of lo-fi, alt-country and ’70s-inspired folk rock. It’s all tied together by her high soprano that pierces like a diamond mined in some faraway place and her poetic lyricism, which has won her comparison to Southern Gothic writers like Carson McCullers and Flannery O’Connor. Her latest album, Tigers Blood, is a beautiful, if calmer, follow-up to 2020’s Saint Cloud, chronicling her journey to sobriety. She’s come a long way from Waxahatchee Creek, where she grew up, but she’s still channeling it. – ADDIE MAHMASSANI

INFO: 8pm, Fox Theater, 1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. $39.50-$55. 510.302.2250.

MONDAY

GLITTERFOX

Glitterfox describes their music as an “indie soundtrack for driving off into the sunset,” and that’s exactly what married couple Solange Igoa and Andrea Walker did in 2015: left their jobs and moved into a van, gigging and busking up and down the West Coast before settling in Portland. Now, the four-piece band has created a luminous, heartfelt indie folk-rock blend powered by authentic, personal songwriting, as shown by their first full-length album coming out next year. The concert is part of Ivy Room’s “Ivy Riot!” series, a monthlong celebration of LGBTQIA+ pride, art and community. – SONYA BENNETT-BRANDT

INFO: 8pm, Ivy Room, 860 San Pablo Ave., Albany. $16/adv, $20/door. 510.526.5888.

TUESDAY

DANNY ATTACK

Danny Attack is mysterious. Visually, his world is full of blood, daggers and intense Gothic lettering. It seems the Jacksonville, Florida, songwriter and guitarist is seldom pictured without fake blood dripping down his head. While he certainly screams many a pop-punk banger that befits such aesthetics, he also has a surprising number of softer songs that lean into a folk-punk sound. In the wistful “Insatiable Lovers,” he sings, “We should photograph heaven while it’s just you and me.” His upcoming album, Kiss You in Hell, is out June 1 via Punkerton Records. And yes, the vinyl is splattered in crimson. – ADDIE MAHMASSANI

INFO: 7:30pm, Golden Bull, 412 14th St., Oakland. $10. 510.224.552.

WEDNESDAY

KURT ROSENWINKEL

When guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel’s The Next Step came out in 2001, the album marked a significant leap for him as a bandleader and composer, cementing his status as one of the most influential guitarists of his generation. At 53, Rosenwinkel continues to amaze—as with the November release of A Lovesome Thing, a miraculous live-duo session from 2012 featuring the late piano genius Geri Allen. He hits Yoshi’s as part of a tour reuniting the Next Step quartet with esteemed tenor saxophonist Mark Turner, drummer Jeff Ballard from the Brad Mehldau Trio and Ben Street, one of the most sought-after bassists in New York. – ANDREW GILBERT

INFO: 8pm, Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West, Oakland. $36-$74. 510.238.9200.

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