EL TEN ELEVEN, THE URBAN LOUNGE, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 9 p.m., $10
It's funny to see a band described as an "instrumental power duo," but it's pretty accurate when it comes to describing SoCal two-piece El Ten Eleven. Guitarist Kristian Dunn and drummer Tim Fogarty craft multi-layered, bombastic songs using a slew of instruments and electronic loops, and the racket delivered by just the two men is impressive to say the least. It's a bit math-rock, kinda proggy at times, but it's always mesmerizing and impressive to watch. Hell, just watching Dunn wield a double-neck half-bass/half-guitar, often playing both necks simultaneously with different hands, is worth the price of admission. The band's latest seven-song set, Transitions, came out earlier this month, and it's rock-solid.
TOOTS & THE MAYTALS/ANDERS OSBORNE, THE STATE ROOM, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 8 p.m., $45
This show offers a midweek treat of serious proportions. Toots & the Maytals are reggae legends--leader Toots Hibbert has been a musical force since getting his start in Jamaica in the '60s, and songs like "Pressure Drop," "Monkey Man" and "54-46 Is My Number" are part of the reggae canon. There is a reason Toots keeps going strong--his love of the music and performing has taken him all over the world, playing stadiums with the likes of the Rolling Stones as well as playing clubs like the State Room. On this tour, he's going all-acoustic, so you'll be hearing the classics in a whole new way on Wednesday. Joining the Maytals is Anders Osborne, the New Orleans guitarist extraordinaire whose fluid playing and solid songwriting make him a headliner is his own right. And on stage? He's a man possessed eliciting an amazing array of sounds from his instrument. Don't be late for this gig--you'll be missing out.