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Photograph: Filip Wolak National Sawdust

The best NYC concerts in February 2020

It’s time to leap into this month’s live music calendar with our list of the best NYC concerts in February

By Ro S and Collier Sutter
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Come February, we're all pretty much over the cold, depressing winter. Admit it: you're already daydreaming about all the wonderful things to do in the summer (including all those stacked summer music festivals and outdoor concerts). Luckily, we've found some worthwhile NYC concerts in February 2020 to make the short month pass by faster!

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best concerts in NYC

NYC concerts in February

Michele Yong

Metronomy

Things to do Concerts

As a teen, frontman Joseph Mount started Metronomy as a one-man bedroom project. Today, the five-piece act has carved out it’s own niche in pop music, and it’s both electronic and quirky. Their fall 2019 album Metronomy Forever is something to throw on loop— it resembles a bit of Daft Punk and Chromeo. Hear their infectious new (and old gems like “The Look”) at this big Brooklyn show.

National Sawdust
Photograph: Filip Wolak

Rafiq Bhatia

Music Dance and electronic

Up-and-coming composer, guitarist and producer Bhatia cut his teeth training alongside jazz legend Billy Hart at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. He's spent the past several years, however, putting those chops to work in glitchy avant-pop trio Son Lux, in which he wrings all sorts of strange textures out of his guitar. Hear him algamate those diverse expriences into distinctive, layered compositional skills here, as he celebrates the release of a "surprising new project."

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Saint VitusBy Chris SchonbergerOnce a mainstay of NYC's downtown scene, true rock & roll clubs feel  like a dying breed in the post-Giuliani era---one...
Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Slow Crush

Music Rock and indie

It's nothing new per se to repurpose the washed out textures of shoegaze for brutal intentions—see bands like Alcest and Amesoeurs, which integrate gutteral black metal vocals into the fold. This Belgian crew's pedalchain concoctions, however, manage to sound simultaneously heavy, soothing, and novel while evading any gimmicky genre-fusions—a modern-day MBV, were Kevin Shields to pen his honeyed tunes solely in fits of rage.

Alexandra Waespi

Rex Orange County

Things to do Concerts

Alex O’Connor from Surrey, U.K. makes woozy, head-in-the-clouds tunes that identify with both the smooth R&B of Frank Ocean and jazz-tinged indie rock of King Krule. The 21-year-old songwriter's distinctive old soul voice caught the ear of Tyler, the Creator, who recruited the English artist for his 2017 album, Flower Boy. Since then, he’s rapidly risen in the charts—catch him touring songs off his latest album, Pony.

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Baby's All Right
Photograph: Courtesy Baby's All Right

Tredici Bacci

Music Jazz

Led by spaghetti-Western fanatic and guitarist Simon Hanes, Tredici Bacci breathes a funky new life into the scores that composer Ennio Morricone wrote for those underappreciated movies of the ’60s and ’70s. Expect the 13-piece band to go heavy on the brass with Hanes’s complex, up-tempo take on the soundtrack genre.

Lollapalooza 2017, Chance the Rapper
Photograph: Neal O'Bryan

Chance the Rapper

Music Rap, hip-hop and R&B

Chicago MC Chancelor Bennett has built a tidy following the past several years with witty, joyful, freewheeling mixtapes like 2013's Acid Rap and the follow-up, Coloring Book. Add to that a series of collaborations with Donnie Trumpet, confounding fringe-rapper Lil B, and soulful singer and keyboardist Francis Farewell Starlight and you have an impressively prolific series of mixtapes and singles to expect tunes from at this arena gig.

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Ida Fiskaa

Anna of the North

Things to do Concerts

Norwegian Anna Lotterud, better known by her stage moniker Anna of the North, is making waves with her glacial synth-pop sound matched with vulnerable songwriting. Her choir-like voice has been featured on songs by American rapper G–Eazy, Irish rapper Rejjie Snow and English electro–pop act HONNE. You’ve probably also heard her hit, “Lovers”, in a pivotal scene of Netflix romance movie To All The Boys I've Loved Before. Now you can root for her as she tours her glittering sophomore album, Dream Girl.

Bat for Lashes

Music Rock and indie

Cooly sensual London songstress Natasha Khan, otherwise known as Bat for Lashes, returned recently with a fifth album, Lost Girls, which combined sprightly, shimmering dream pop with arrestingly poetic lyrics. Hear it at Town Hall's posh digs—a fitting environment for the singer's dark, addictive and stately songwriting.

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Durand Jones & the Indications

Things to do Concerts

Inspired by the timeless songs created by artists like Marvin Gaye and Curtis Mayfield, the five-person collective Durand Jones & the Indications are disciples of dusty ’70s soul records. The group's album, American Love Call, addresses heartbreak and America’s tumultuous times with clear-eyed lyricism, sweeping string arrangements, and the contrasting vocals of Jones and drummer Aaron Frazer. Before their set, score strikes at the venue’s bowling alley.

Terry Riley
Photograph: Lenny Gonzalez

Terry Riley's "In C"

Music Classical and opera

Darmstadt, an experimental music series led by composers Nick Hallett and Zach Layton, presents yet another rendition of this seminal work. Riley is rightly revered as a foundational minimalist composer and even a New Age forebear, and “In C” is possibly his most influential work. Playing this series of short musical fragments for an indeterminate number of performers, the ensemble features a host of local luminaries.

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Looking for new music?

The 50 best uses of songs in movies

Movies Action and adventure

Colloquially, it used to be called the "needle drop"—when a Martin Scorsese or Quentin Tarantino picked a piece of preexisting music and laid it down under a dramatic scene, with seismic results. We've thumbed through our stacks of wax (i.e., Blu-ray collections) to collect cinema's most potent examples, allowing for iconic uses of classical music and jazz along with the expected pop hits. One parameter, though: no songs composed for the movie itself. (Sorry, Simple Minds.) The result is our most toe-tapping list to date. But do let us know if we've left out your favorite jam.

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