ryan’s forecast

by Ryan Snyder

upcoming shows you should check out


Oh yeah, baby. The Durham Performing Arts Center is going to play a real sexy one for you this Valentine’s Day weekend. One of the all-time great bands of the Quiet Storm era of soul will be happy to lubricate the gears of romance, as Maze featuring Frankie Beverly (www.mazemuze. com) will play the sprawling theater this Friday. Despite not being terribly productive for the past 20 years, Maze and their iconic front man have toured regularly, riding the tide of their smooth funk and soul fusion hits of the late ’70s to the early ’90s thanks to the rabid dedication of their core fanbase. They’ve only released one studio album since 1993 — a 2004 greatest hits compilation — but the group is back in vogue after a tribute album by a who’s-who of contemporary soul artists was released late last year. Tickets for this one are $25, $40, and $55 and the doors open at 7 p.m.


You might notice by now that week’s forecast is the All Triangle Edition, but there are a couple of opportunities that have to be capitalized upon. Unfortunately, they’re both happening the same night, but there’s not a wrong choice in the bunch. The first of those includes one of the defining acts of the post-rock genre and a band of which anyone who’s ever picked up an instrument would maintain a sublime appreciation. In the late ’80s, a group of Chicago punks and hippies got together to run a musical collective in a hovel on the South Side that would eventually produce Tortoise (, a group that has done their best to defy easy categorization over the entire course of their existence. The band exists at the fluid intersection of dub, dance, jazz, techno, rock and classical minimalism, with no part overwhelming another. Tortoise will bring their swirling, textured and highly atmospheric sound to the Cat’s Cradle for a rare North Carolina appearance this Monday, Feb. 15. The most amazing thing about this group is their versatility; each member constantly switches off instruments from song to song, creating a uniquely communicative environment. Tickets for the show are $15 and the music starts at 9 p.m.


The flipside of the difficult Monday night musical decision involves a band that could be categorized as a must-see, particularly for fans of the blues looking to branch into unconventional realms of influence. The word tinariwen means “the deserts” in the Tamashek language of the Sahara and it’s shared by one of the most iconic political voices of the Middle Eastern musical world. Tinariwen ( will perform at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Memorial Hall on Monday, the only regional date among a short tour of the US until a performance at the Bonnaroo Music Festival in June. Formed in 1979, they rose to prominence in the 1980s as the pied pipers of a new political and social conscience in the southern Sahara, and the icons of a whole generation of young Touareg living in exile in Algeria and Libya. Their raw, bluesy style is reminiscent of that of Ali Farka Toure and fused with the tribal rhythms of their native nomadic ethnicity. The band is actually a collective of musicians who come together at various intervals to perform, rarely containing the same lineup as the previous. That dynamic is entirely a result of their peripatetic nature, but also ensures the band’s longevity. Tickets are $25, $35, and $40 and the performance starts at 7:30 p.m.