Photo courtesy of Greg Gutbezahl
Midlake at Tulips Thursday

The first time I heard 2006’s The Trials of Van Occupanther, I was blown away. Here was this band, Midlake, from Denton, doing this honey-brown soft-rock thing to perfection even before I knew I needed more Fleetwood Mac and Alan Parsons Project in my miserable life. I only wish I never would have read the lyrics. The cognitive disconnect between the story — about some sad pioneer-type dude in the woods — and the modern instrumentation ruined the aesthetic experience for me. Now, I hated the preponderance of love songs and “you” songs in rock as much as the next grumpy jerk, but after being somewhat let down by Van Occupanther, I’m not as averse to them as I was. Turns out there’s a good reason why most songs are about love or “you.” #simplenotsimplistic

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The sonically beautiful and lyrically draining album did have me wanting more. They did not disappoint. Midlake’s next two LPs, especially 2013’s Antiphon, are stellar: highly melodic, seriously groovy, deliciously produced. And the lyrics are decidedly much less Leviathan-centric. No doubt the Denton quintet will play a little bit from all four of their studio albums — and maybe some from their in-process fifth — 7pm Thu at Tulips FTW (112 St. Louis Av, 817-367-9798). Tickets at Prekindle.


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Ishi at Texas Live! Saturday

I like Ishi now but had kind of tuned them out when they first came out of Arlington back in the mid-aughts. From what I recall, they were kind of doing that shiny, sparkly dance-pop while wearing Native American headdresses or something? (Lots of people were wearing them back then. Guess it all started at Coachella. Fashion models truly can pull off anything!) Now down to one, um, chief songwriter instead of two, the band takes over Terror! At Texas Live! (1650 E Randol Mill Rd, Arlington, 817-852-6688) 6pm Sat with headliners Ghostland Observatory and a DJ set by Dallas’ Neon Indian. Ishi will be performing a lot of if not all of Sweet Gold, his latest album that features contributions from Medicine Man Revival, Nia Brock, Fort Worth homeboy Keite Young, and Cure for Paranoia. Unlike a lot of “local” shows, Ishi goes all out on the spectacle with lots of lights and imagery to accompany the catchy, feel-good sounds. Tickets are $49-55.


Photo courtesy of Josue Salinas Pictures
Keegan McInroe at Lola’s Friday

Truly a local treasure, international bon vivant and famous raconteur Keegan McInroe celebrates the release of the single “Never Seen a Ghost” and accompanying video 9pm Fri at Lola’s Saloon (2736 W 6th St, 817-759-9100). Ginny Mac, Jackie Darlene, and Jon Young will open. Cover is $10.


Mean Motor Scooter Saturday at MASS

Kyoto Lo-Fi, Wrex, and Ayden Trammell will open for easily the hardest-working band in the Fort, Mean Motor Scooter, 7pm Sat at MASS (1002 S Main St, 682-707-7774). No word yet on cover. — Anthony Mariani


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