Top Five Concerts in OC This Week

Ra Ra Riot--See Wednesday
Ra Ra Riot--See Wednesday

Monday, Feb. 11

St. Lucia
The Constellation Room
For the purposes of this blurb, St. Lucia is not the Swedish figure known for wearing a wreath of candles in her hair and bearing gifts for Scandinavian children. Rather, it's the nom de plume of musician Jean-Philip Grobler (doesn't sound pretentious at all). Hailing from South Africa by way of Brooklyn, Grobler rocks a pop music that's heavy on the dance synth. His big percussive arrangements call to mind Paul Simon spinning in an East Germany disco. --Brandon Ferguson

Tuesday, Feb. 12

OC Music Awards Showcase: Night 6
Founders Hall (at Segerstrom Center)

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Having witnessed each of the showcases thus far in the battle for live-band supremacy, Tuesday's sixth installment could easily be one of the most exciting. The venue, Founders Hall at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, is definitely the most refined venue on the list. Funny, considering the chord-shredding irreverence we'll be experiencing courtesy of a handful of OC's loudest, rowdiest rock acts, including Jeramiah Red, the Devious Means, Breach the Summit, Standing Hawthorne and Midnight Hour. There might be five very different types styles represented here (from baroque pop to FM alt-rock), but one thing's for sure: They will all be loud. --Nate Jackson

Wednesday, Feb. 13

Ra Ra Riot
The Observatory

If you just missed the worldwide, live, online broadcast of Ra Ra Riot's concert at Brooklyn's Music Hall of Williamsburg, celebrating the release of new album Beta Love, consider yourself a lucky little synth-popper because the band is playing at the Observatory this week. It's the group's first record since the departure of founding member/cellist Alexandra Lawn--who seemingly took with her Riot's signature baroque indie-pop sound. But the group's new musical horizons take them straight into the world of sci-fi fiction, with robots and synthesizers and machines now taking center stage. Out with the old-fashioned and in with the space age. --Erin DeWitt


Thursday, Feb. 14
Boogaloo Assassins
Commonwealth Lounge (Fullerton)

There's something distinctly familiar about the Latin powerhouse Boogaloo Assassins. Maybe it's that authentically greasy mixture of sharp brass, pounding drums, thick bass and gang vocals that hearkens back to the time of sweaty basement parties on a hot summer night in Spanish Harlem . . . pre-reggaeton. Whatever the reason you find yourself drawn to the Latin fusion of this all-star cast of seasoned players, one thing is certain: They will make you dance. Combining the flavors of everything from boogaloo, traditional salsa, cumbia and funk, there are few territories south of the equator this robust lineup of local cats fail to address. If you're looking for some romantic Valentine's Day plans, may we suggest showing off your moves on the dance floor with these guys . . . before you decide to get your date home and show them off elsewhere. --Nate Jackson

Friday, Feb. 15

The Ziggens

If you don't know much about Orange County ska/surf/punk/garage band the Ziggens, it's okay, as they've somehow been overshadowed by onetime label mates such as Sublime. But unlike Sublime, who burned out before becoming massively succesful, the Ziggens have been plugging away continuously for more than two decades. Though they've produced plenty of work since the 1990s, be sure to check out their masterpiece, 1998's Pomona Lisa. With cowbilly style, they bring A-game lyrics that tickle a funny bone good. --Brandon Ferguson 

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