Top 5 Must-See Phoenix Shows This Weekend

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Hear that? It's the clock counting down the hours until your weekend begins and it's nearing the magic moment known as quitting time. To help the time pass more quickly, you might consider what it is you'll actually be doing during the next couple days and nights of work-free bliss.

Luckily, if you're in the mood to get in a live show or two, there are more than a few options to choose from over the next 72 hours (eyeball our extensive online concert calendar for proof of such). And then there are our choices for the must-see shows this weekend.

Mayer Hawthorne - Friday, February 7 - Marquee Theatre

Michigan native Mayer Hawthorne executes his throwback R&B with so much period precision that a casual observer might assume the stuff was rescued from the vaults at Motown. Listen closely, though, and Hawthorne starts distinguishing himself: "From the moment that I met you, I thought you were fine," he sings over an easygoing groove in "The Walk" from his 2011 album How Do You Do. "But your shitty fuckin' attitude has got me changing my mind." Tonight, Hawthorne visits the Marquee Theater in Tempe for a solo performance. -- Mikael Wood

The Woodworks - The Rogue Bar - Friday, February 7

We're fairly certain that you've heard The Prodigy's 1997 chartbuster "Smack My Bitch Up" at least once or twice by now. But have you ever heard it being covered by a live folk/rock/blues band? Probably not, which is why the excellent rendition of the big beat-era track that's often performed by local band The Woodworks is worth a listen, as is the rest of their spirited folk- and blues-laced rock 'n' roll offerings.

The Tempe three-piece's profoundly diverse sound is backed by the quirky vocals of its male and female singers and runs the gamut from melancholic to upbeat (especially in the fantastic "Slave Driver") and even crosses over into "thrash folk" and gypsy-ish territory. As The Woodworks themselves say on their Facebook:

It's not rock and roll, but it rocks! It's not folk, but doing a jig feels natural! It's not blues, but we occasionally pour our souls into repeated 12 bar phrases! It's not indi/alternative, but we'll drink pbr if the budgit [sic] is tight!

You can hear much of this either on their new album Safe Mode or at Friday night's release party for said disc at the Rogue Bar, which will also feature Banana Gun, Sasquanaut, DeadFoxx, and The Rolling Blackouts. -- Benjamin Leatherman

Los Lonely Boys - Saturday, February 8 - Chandler Center for the Arts

San Angelo's Los Lonely Boys have made their own mark over the last decade with their muscular Texican blues-rock. The Garza brothers are a contemporary power trio, with Beatlesque harmonies, strong roots influences, and Henry Garza's ferocious guitar prowess, reflecting Hendrix, Carlos Santana, and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Last month, the band debuted its latest studio album Revelation, which has already earned rave reviews. -- Rick Mason

Remezcla PHX - Monarch Theatre - Saturday, February 8

The Valley's Latin dance scene could best be described as a massive melting pot of sound. But while there are huge dollops of such popular genres as salsa, merengue, bachata, and reggaeton in the mix via the various local discotecas, more tastemaking Latin-influenced styles such as moombahton and cumbia-crunk have also added distinctive flavors to the sonic stew.

And one of the PHX's more creative DJs stirring the aforementioned metaphorical melting pot is Jorge Melo, a veteran of the Latin club scene and member of the influential AZ Gunslingaz who has been cooking up critically lauded moombahton mixes over the past few years. This weekend, Melo will drop such sounds and other Latin-influenced mixes from his arsenal inside the Monarch Theatre, 122 East Washington Street, during Remezcla PHX.

The self-described "alt-Latino party" on Saturday, February 8, aims to showcase "new and next music from international and local acts that are pushing Latin electronic forward." As such, it will feature sets by Melo and DJ Musa Mind, as well as Tijuana's Los Macuanos, three-man act comprised of Moisés Horta, Reuben Torres, and Moisés López that creates indie electronica and psych-electro via live instrumentation.

Headlining Remezcla PHX will be Mexican Institute of Sound, the one-man electronica project of DJ/producer Camilo Lara that mixes and mashes up cumbia, hip-hop, Baile funk, and electro with politically charged material to create "nothing you've ever heard before." The party starts at 10 p.m. Admission is free for those who RSVP via www.remezcla.com/phx. -- Benjamin Leatherman

Phoenix Rock Lottery - Crescent Ballroom - Sunday, February 9

Homegrown hitmakers come around but once in a blue moon. Getting a chance to jam all day long and hit the stage at night with said hitmaker -- in this case, Jim Adkins, frontman of Jimmy Eat World? That'd be like hitting the lottery. And it's just what 19 local musicians (each somewhat notable, relatively speaking, in his or her own right) hope to do when they buy a metaphorical ticket for the first Phoenix Rock Lottery, in which five quartets shall be formed at random from a list of 20 musicians and then sequestered for the day to compose and rehearse three original tunes as well as learn one cover.

After roughly 10 hours, the five nascent combos will convene for a concert to benefit local charity Rosie's House: A Music Academy for Children. Besides Adkins, several familiar faces are tabbed to participate, including ace multi-instrumentalist Robin Vining (who did time in Jimmy Eat World last year), Matt Noaks of Black Carl, and Mike Bell of Lymbyc Systym, as well folks from popular local acts like Wooden Indian, Emby Alexander, Mergence, and Dry River Yacht Club. -- Jay Bennett

Find any show in the Valley via our online concert calendar.

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