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December 17, 2015

Listen up: 10 concerts to hit this weekend

From India.Arie to Bayside

With Christmas and New Year’s Eve around the corner, this is the last normal week of the year. It won’t be your final chance to catch great live music in the city in 2015, but time is running out. If you’re scrambling for some pre-holiday de-stressing, check out our list of local concerts and music events for the weekend below.

Thursday, Dec. 17

Madalean Gauze: Boot & Saddle

It’s been just over a year since Madalean Gauze released her first EP last July, a short but ambitious project called "American War." Now the budding songwriter is back with some new music — you can check out a preview of the new album here — and she’ll be celebrating with a release show at Boot & Saddle. "Woven In" (a musical project from Mariah Johnson) and Rosali are scheduled to open the 8:30 p.m. release show.

Doors 8 p.m., Show 8:30 p.m., $10

Mr. Sonny James & Matthew Law: Silk City

Weekly dance parties never get old with Mr. Sonny James and Matthew Law at the helm. The Illvibe Collective duo’s Thursday night Silk City party is a recent invention, but there’s no stopping it. Drink specials at the no-frills party include $4 Heineken, Sailor Jerry and Stoli, and college students get in free until midnight.

Show 10 p.m.-2 a.m., $5 after 11 p.m. (free until midnight with college ID)

Julian King: Underground Arts

Philly has a thing for R&B and soul. It’s in the water or something. And rising star Julian King is proof the city isn’t running out of supply. King, a University of the Arts graduate, is bringing his debut EP out for the local crowd at Underground Arts. Listen to the lead track, the irresistibly boisterous “No Strings,” here for a sense of King’s chops. 

Doors 7 p.m., $12

India.Arie: The Keswick

India.Arie found her stride as a new songwriter and guitarist with her 2001 debut, "Acoustic Soul." Arie has a knack for soft-spoken power and clever lyricism, but after years of mining that sound, she’s trying something new this time around: a Christmas album. Arie teamed up with legendary keyboardist Joe Sample (who passed away in September) for "Christmas with Friends," a collection she brings to The Keswick tonight. 

Doors 8 p.m., $35-$59.50

Friday, Dec. 18

Annual Philly Hardcore Christmas Classic: Ortlieb’s

In case you can’t hold out until next year’s This Is Hardcore fest, a nearly decade-in-the-running local powerhouse, here’s a holiday edition: the annual Philly Hardcore Christmas Classic. The Joe Hardcore-promoted event features a stacked lineup of bands including Shai Hulud, Mother of Mercy, Eternal Sleep and more. The best part? The event doubles as a toy drive, so bring a donation and then dive in.

Doors 7 p.m., $15

Quitehype, Hi$to: W/N W/N 

Earlier this year, Hi$to released a debut EP full of Baltimore club and surging electronica, but the guy has been putting on for his city for years. PSYCH’D, an event and music platform Hi$to started in 2013, is taking a victory lap with a trio of local shows. On Friday, he brings the affair to W/N W/N coffeeshop for a free event. Local rising star Quitehype will be on the mix. Listen to Hi$to’s triumphant two-year celebration mixtape here.

Show 10 p.m.-2 a.m., Free

Saturday, Dec. 19

Beach Slang & Tim Kasher: First Unitarian Church

After a debut EP released last April, Beach Slang returned with a stunning full-length last month. The title, "The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us," hints at just how endearing the uplifting punk four-piece Philly band is. It’s infectious. And it’s inviting. The group plays the First Unitarian Church on Saturday and pulls up with Tim Kasher.

Doors 7 p.m., Show 7:30 p.m., $15

Matthew Law: Kung Fu Necktie

If Matthew Law and Sonny James’ Thursday night Motion party doesn’t cut it, this Saturday, the rising Philly deejay celebrates two years of his own “Friends & Fam” event at Kung Fu Necktie. It’s a close-knit but open-armed throwdown, and the anniversary is cause for some special guests. Philly trio Ill Fated Natives will make an appearance while The Bul Bey will hold down the hosting duties.

Doors 10 p.m., $5

Sunday, Dec. 20

Bayside: Underground Arts

Last year, Bayside singer and guitarist Anthony Raneri shared a gem with that boils down their essence as a group. “I think it tells in our records that we’re a band that doesn’t get tired of ourselves,” he said. “We like our music. We like our style.” It’s like a thesis for doubling down on the same sound over the course of six records. “We just want to get better at it,” he added. The group’s live show follows suit, and after a summer on tour, the four-man outfit brings the new album "Cult" to Underground Arts on Sunday.

Doors 7 p.m., $22

DJ South Philly Billy: Johnny Brenda's

Sunday nights are usually reserved for lounging around, catching up on food, sleep and football. But if you’ve got some gas left in the tank there’s a place to let it out: Johnny Brenda’s all vinyl KTTO event with DJ South Philly Billy. The regular night at JB’s features South Philly Billy spinning an all-vinyl mix of hardcore, street punk, black metal and more. Plus, it’s free all night.

Show 8 p.m.-midnight, Free