Laura Reed

freetimes: Columbia concerts to see this week: Fantasia, Laura Reed, Amy Rigby, Boundaries

Thursday 17
Fantasia — It’s somehow been 15 years since Fantasia Barrino took the win in Season Three of American Idol, winning over the judges and voters with her soulful, raspy, emotional delivery and a tragedy-to-triumph personal story fit for a Hollywood drama. She’s managed to sustain her singing career long past when most of the reality show divas hit their expiration date, and she has a rep as a first-rate live performer. Oh, and did we mention that professional hot mess and proven song-stealer Robin Thicke is on this bill, too? So, that’s something. With Tank & the Bonfyre. — Vincent Harris | Township Auditorium; 7:30 p.m., $56-$116; 803-576-2350,

Jon Langston — Langston is, in some ways, a perfectly ordinary country radio up-and-comer. Blessed with an aw-shucks voice and a keen sense of where his bread is buttered, he leans toward the innocuous conventions of his chosen genre to a fault while letting the barest hints of personality peak out. Take “When It Comes to Loving You,” his breakout hit. Replete with predictable cliché and bland details, its faux-Stapleton feel suggests the music Langston might make if he could. — Kyle Petersen | The Senate: 7:30 p.m., $22; 803-252-9392,

The Mighty Pines, Blocker — All the way from St. Louis, The Mighty Pines brings a heady mix of soul-inspired roots-rock. They’ve got the swagger of Stapleton but with a little more cornbread in their music. It’s the kind of funky, two-steppin’ country fusion that’s making a comeback lately. Blocker rounds out the bill with wistful acoustic rock and a bonanza of Tegan and Sara-level hooky choruses. — Ethan Fogus | The White Mule: 9 p.m., $8; 803-708-5908,

Friday 18
MercyMe — MercyMe is a veteran contemporary Christian pop band, which by definition means that its music isn’t for everybody. If you like hard-edged rock songs or anything other than praise-heavy lyrics, then these aren’t your guys. And while the music might be a little too polished and perfect, it’s worth noting that this isn’t one of those contemporary Christian bands that waters its lyrics down to cater to the straight-pop audience. Pretty much every tune is direct testimony to faith, which is kind of admirable in its own way. And no one can say the vocal-harmony-drenched anthemic pop tunes aren’t catchy. With Crowder, Micah Tyler — Vincent Harris | Colonial Life Arena: 7:30 p.m., $32.50-$178; 803-576-9200,

Larry Stephenson Band — The award-winning Larry Stephenson Band has been around now for 30 years, hence the simple title, 30, for its latest album, which showcases a driving, traditional sound based around the voice of bandleader Larry Stephenson. He is a member of the Virginia Country Music Hall of Fame and has been named Male Vocalist of the Year five times by the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America, which also inducted him into its Hall of Greats in 2018. — Kevin Oliver | Bill’s Music Shop & Pickin’ Parlor: 7:30 p.m., $15; 803-796-6477,

Saturday 19
Jade Blocker, 6IXX & Guests, H3RO — The Elmwood outdoor spot that Cola Town Bike Collective has settled into is also a prime hangout spot, so much so that the group is moving from a sporadic series of shows to a legit Fall Concert Series. The first features the pop-rock swagger of Jade Blocker alongside the joyous indie performance artist 6ixx and the rapid-fire flow of recent Columbia expat H3R0 — an eclectic lineup that hopefully hints at the future curation of the series. — Kyle Petersen | Cola Town Bike Collective: 6 p.m., $10;

iamdynamite — Detroit’s iamdynamite is equal parts Jack White yowl and early Devo new wave with a steady drip of ’90s melodic art-rock. The duo is known for bombastic live shows that keep you at the edge of your seat with spirited power. Check Out “Be There”, the poppy opener of 2015’s Wasa Tusa, for muted arpeggios, restrained drums and a dope whoa-whoa post chorus that’ll ring through your brain for days. — Ethan Fogus | Art Bar: 8 p.m., $6; 803-929-0198,

Megan Jean and the KFB, Don Merckle and the Blacksmiths — This bill comes at the perfect time of year for both acts. No month embodies Megan Jean’s music more than October, as she and husband Byrne Klay use banjo and washboard syncopation to anchor Jean’s ghostly wail in their brand of New Orleans-cemetery gypsy folk. Don Merckle’s foot-stomping, blues-tinged Celtic romps are best suited for an outdoor beer drinking setting, which the recent cooler temperatures and backyard stage at Foxfield will graciously provide. — Cam Powell | Foxfield Bar and Grille: 8 p.m., free; 803-728-0420,

Laura Reed — Preach Jacobs’s Mo’ Betta Soul Loft Sessions series draws mostly on — as one might expect from the title — soul. Laura Reed, the guest at this series installment, casts a wider net. The R&B-oriented Raleigh singer-songwriter was born in South Africa and honed her craft in Nashville; her style summarily draws freely from rock, funk, blues harp and bossa nova. Toro Y Moi drummer Andy Woodard spins a special DJ set, too. — Patrick Wall | Frame of Mind: 7 p.m., $30;

Remo Drive, Lunar Vacation, Late Bloomer — Minnesotan duo Remo Drive arrives on the heels of May’s Natural, Everyday Degradation full-length and its follow-up EP, Natural, Everyday Extended Play. Across the records’ 14 combined songs, Remo Drive exercises its knack for slinky dance-punk rhythm and pleading melodies that recall anything from Hot Hot Heat to Fall Out Boy. Atlanta’s Lunar Vacation complements with breezy, chiming indie pop that draws from lo-fi C86 pop, ’80s synths and smooth neo-lounge. Charlotte’s Late Bloomer opens with crackling old-school indie rock. — Bryan C. Reed | New Brookland Tavern: 7 p.m., $17 ($14 advance); 803-791-4413,

Gwen Yvette — Gwen Yvette presented her Sounds of Soul show — the setlist of which draws mostly from the songbooks of the leading ladies of soul and R&B such as Chaka Khan, Jill Scott, Tina Turner, Aretha Franklin, Betty Wright and Gladys Knight — twice already this year at Chayz Lounge. It must be a hit: For her third appearance at the west-of-the-river vibe lounge, she reprises the gig yet again. — Patrick Wall | Chayz Lounge: 8 p.m., $20; 803-563-8375,

Sunday 20
Moniker, Beket — On the recent Private Prophet EP, Richmond’s Moniker blends lead singer Jordan Scott’s Matt Berninger-esque baritone with a kinetic post-punk rhythm section and ornate guitar-and-keys arrangements to create a sonic landscape that lives somewhere in the Venn diagram intersection of Modest Mouse and Nick Cave’s classic works. Beket brings a dual guitar wall of sound down from the Upstate, able to shift from delicately layered, grief-stricken ballads to blown-out emo punk without warning. With Joseph Sanders and Marley Erin. — Cam Powell | New Brookland Tavern: 7:30 p.m., $6 ($10 under 21); 803-791-4413,

Amy Rigby — Girl to City, the memoir from writer and rock ‘n’ roller Amy Rigby, is a document of a life well lived. Rigby moved to Manhattan from Pittsburgh in the mid-’70s, became a regular at punk clubs like CBGB in the late ’70s, played in cult-favorite rock bands in the ’80s, built a songwriting career in Nashville in the ’00s and still cuts records with her partner, “Wreckless” Eric Goulden. Rigby reads from her book and plays a few songs; Stagbriar’s Emily McCollum opens. — Patrick Wall | Curiosity Coffee Bar: 3 p.m., $10; 803-357-2889,

Tuesday 22
Boundaries, Heavens Die, Roseblood — Calling this a metalcore bill is technically true, but it’s also misleading. The Connecticut-bred headliners in Boundaries shift easily from belligerent breakdowns into soaring melo-death solos and post-hardcore squalls. Virginia’s Heavens Die mine moments of silence between vicious riffs to make their brutal onslaught even heavier. New Jersey’s Roseblood injects nü-metal noise into brutal death metal riffs, while Salem, Massachusetts, quintet Carnivora uses riffs to carve deep grooves. Texas band Vinous drags the stomping rhythms of metalcore into a mire of doom-paced sludge. — Bryan C. Reed | New Brookland Tavern: 6 p.m., $15 ($10 advance); 803-791-4413,

Wednesday 23
Bull Moose Party, After Midnight — Columbia blues-rock power trio Bull Moose Party supplies the ragged, fuzzed-out guitar and bass tones of obvious touchstone Jack White with nods to the licks of original Chicago bluesmen like Muddy Waters and Buddy Guy. Fellow local After Midnight deals in slick pop-rock numbers that combine the modern sheen of The 1975 with the propulsive ’80s rock rhythms of the late Eddie Money. With Tyler Key, Slim Pickens. — Cam Powell | New Brookland Tavern: 7 p.m., $6 ($10 under 21; 18-plus only); 803-791-4413,

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