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The best concerts in NYC in March

Highlights for the month's concerts in NYC include Rihanna, Leon Bridges, Beach House and Oneohtrix Point Never

Photograph: Courtesy the Windish Agency
Oneohtrix Point Never

Hey, it's March! Spring is here again, and with it comes a fresh supply of concerts in NYC to keep venues and concert halls buzzing. While you might still catch the odd icy temp, keep your spirits high and remember, all the summer music festivals that are just around the corner.

RECOMMENDED: See our guide to concerts in NYC

Concerts in NYC in March

Slayer

Call us nitpickers if you must, but it's hard for us to think of Slayer the same way in light of guitarist Jeff Hanneman's tragic passing and the formal sacking of drum titan Dave Lombardo in recent years. That said, last year's newest Slayer release, Repentless, proved that respective replacements Gary Holt and Paul Bostaph are certainly up to the task of executing the band's trademark bone-chilling warp-speed thrash. So throw the horns and give thanks for these dark gods of metal.

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02 Mar 2016

Jackson Browne

Eloquent, philosophizing old soul Jackson Browne brings his tunes to Brooklyn. The bleeding-heart singer-songwriter's last release was his 2014 studio album, Standing in the Breach, so expect to hear from that, as well his ’70s hits like "The Pretender" and "Running on Empty."

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Wed Mar 2 - Thu Mar 3

The Who

The Who—that is, Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, some other musicians and two very prominent ghosts—hits the road as part of the group's 50th-anniversary celebration, digging into some deep cuts for their supposedly final stadium trek. The core duo is bolstered by a more-than-able supporting cast, including Beatle progeny Zak Starkey and bass wizard Pino Palladino, recently heard on D'Angelo's masterful Black Messiah.

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Thu Mar 3 - Sat Mar 19

DIIV

Working as DIIV, Zachary Cole Smith & Co. crafted a killer debut in 2012 that blended shoegaze, pyschedelia and a pounding postpunk beat to dreamily delicious effect. In the meantime, lead singer Cole stumbled into love with indie-pop princess Sky Ferreira, in addition to a turbulent relationship with rehab and possession charges. Fortunately, it provides excellent source material for the highly anticipated double-album follow-up, Is the Is Are, delves deeper into the crew's dark, liquidy guitar rock textures. They play 3 nights here at the newly re-opened Bushwick DIY space, Market Hotel.

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Thu Mar 3 - Sat Mar 5

Ra Ra Riot

Back in 2008, fresh-faced Syracuse college grads Ra Ra Riot won fans with their debut disc, The Rhumb Line, mixing mischievous chamber-pop with a marked unselfconsciousness. We haven't seen any new material since 2013's Beta Love, a synthy, bouncy pop affair, but the band's catalogue of undeniably catchy hooks promises a dancy time nonetheless.

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04 Mar 2016

Leon Bridges + Son Little

Twenty-five-year-old Leon Bridges’s clear, powerful voice and mastery of ’60s soul and R&B have already earned him the attention of Columbia Records, which signed the Fort Worth native at the end of 2014. This gig comes on the heels of last year's spirited, appealingly retro debut LP, Coming Home.

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Mon Mar 7 - Wed Mar 9

Nada Surf

Nada Surf scored a modest hit with "Popular," a quirky, talk-singy alt-rocker from its 1996 debut, and has accrued plenty of cult-fave cachet in the intervening years. With You Know Who You Are, its first studio album since since 2012, the band is expanding its sound from its traditional bittersweet stylings to more epically-arranged heights. Hear the new material for the first time here (and maybe some deep cuts from last year's B-Sides collection).

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08 Mar 2016

Beach House

Delectably dreamy Baltimore duo Beach House, comprised of guitarist Alex Scally and husky-voiced singer Victoria LeGrand, had an unusually prolific 2015, releasing both its 5th and 6th albums, Depression Cherry and Thank You Lucky Stars. The long-awaited LP's retain the lush-yet-intimate synthscapes and glowing vocals the twosome are known for, but pare the instrumentation down from 2012's expansive Bloom to a more pointed kind of haze. Move fast because, yup, these dates are gonna sell out fast.

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Mon Mar 14 - Wed Mar 16

Tortoise

Despite being one of post-rock's most foundational acts, Chicago experimentalists Tortoise have always demonstrated a penchant for stepping outside the genre's strictures, winding between electronica and improvisational jazz in its eclectic 10-minute epics. With its first album in nearly seven years, The Catastrophist, the group veers toward those latter influences, having developed the tunes from a project commissioned by the City of Chicago exemplifying its ties to the city's jazz scene. Here, the fusionistas returns to Manhattan for the first time in 4 years.

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16 Mar 2016

Oneohtrix Point Never + Liturgy

Cosmically-inclined local synth whiz Daniel Lopatin, who records and performs as Oneohtrix Point Never, spun a bizarre narrative mythos around his latest release, Garden of Delete—one of 2015's best—involving an adolescent extraterrestial named Ezra who loves space grunge. Accordingly, the new ambient contortions sound like cybernetic 90s nu-metal. Those confoundingly exploratory vibes make it oddly fitting that he gigs here alongside fellow genre renegades Liturgy, known for its divisive black metal inversions.

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17 Mar 2016
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