THE PACK A.D.
The title of The Pack a.d.’s new album—We Kill Computers—is exactly the kind of sentiment one would expect from a gritty lo-fi guitar-and-drums duo steeped in the blues. Funny thing, though: The Vancouver twosome of singer/guitarist Becky Black and drummer Maya Miller spend much of the album’s 13 songs leaving their blues base behind in favor of straightforward rock & roll with a decidedly sunnier outlook. Black and Miller attribute their shift in attitude, and sound, to the inspiration received simply by looking out the van window during the months they spent on the road in 2009, witnessing the wonders of the Rocky Mountains, sweating through the occasional wildfire and dodging random wildlife. One would think natives of the Canadian Northwest would have plenty of those images to draw on before hitting the road, but apparently the unheated downtown Vancouver practice space The Pack a.d. call home is light on animals or beautiful scenery. The duo’s live shows are already renowned for their sweaty energy; just imagine what might happen when Black and Miller get a view of the Wasatch Front before taking the stage. Long Distance Operator opens. The Woodshed, 60 E. 800 South, 8 p.m. $5
KING KHAN & THE SHRINES
KRCL CONCERT: TOLCHOCK TRIO, ANDALE, VILE BLUE SHADES
It’s not every day that local rock acts take over the stage at The State Room, but the planets aligned for the kick-off of what radio station KRCL 90.9 FM intends to be a series of showcases designed to expose Utah talent to bigger audiences. First up are three familiar faves in the jaunty guitar-squall of Tolchock Trio, anthemic rock of Andale and verge-of-chaos genre-benders Vile Blue Shades. Not only do you get a night full of some of Salt Lake City’s finest homegrown sounds, though; all proceeds from the show go to support KRCL. The State Room, 638 S. State, 8 p.m. $12 advance/$15 at the door
JOHN BROWN'S BODY, TOUBAB KREWE
It’s natural to be suspicious of a reggae band whose members hail from Rastafarian hotbeds like, er, Ithaca, N.Y., and Cambridge, Mass. But a couple of aspects to John Brown’s Body will change your mind from thinking these are New England posers ripping off Jamaican culture. First, the eight-man band is aces at fulfilling all the traditional needs of reggae, from the potent horn blasts to silky vocal harmonies to Jah-hyping lyrics. More important, though, is the fact the band has been steadily moving away from simply rehashing traditional reggae licks, particularly after longtime bassist Scott Palmer died in 2006. A reshuffled lineup decided to push the band’s sound in new directions, including dub, drum ‘n’ bass and hard funk. It’s a winning combination the group calls “future roots.” In Toubab Krewe, John Brown’s Body may have found an ideal touring partner. The North Carolina-based quintet fuses West African influences with American sounds ranging from zydeco to surf, along with a rootsy vibe gleaned from their native Appalachian stomping grounds. The Depot, 400 W. South Temple, 8 p.m. $15 advance/$20 at the door.
Just when you thought OK Go was a one-treadmill-trick pony, the L.A. quartet returns with another insanely popular video thanks to the massive Rube Goldberg machine designed to accompany “This Too Shall Pass” from the band’s third album, Of the Blue Colour of the Sky. Granted, the new viral sensation has a ways to go to equal the more than 50 million plays garnered by “Here It Goes Again” on YouTube since its release in 2006, but “This Two Shall Pass” is already past the 10 million mark. Like past efforts, OK Go’s new album is a winning blend of power-pop and dance-friendly disco-fied beats. OK Go’s Salt Lake appearance is the kick-off of the band’s spring tour. Suffice to say, The State Room hasn’t experienced anything quite like these guys in its first year. The State Room, 638 S. State, 8 p.m. $16 advance/$18 at the door