Matthew Lux’s Communication
Matthew Lux is the Kevin Bacon of Chicago music, connected to just about every important living player in the city. He’s been a key presence in local jazz, rock, soul, and dance-music circles since graduating from Lane Tech in 1991, but it’s taken him till now to release his first album as a leader. Contra/Fact (Astral Spirits) presents a brooding jazz quartet with trumpeter Ben Lamar Gay, drummer Mikel Patrick Avery, and reedist Jayve Montgomery, and tonight the band plays in its honor. —Peter Margasak
8:30 PM, Constellation, 3111 N. Western, $10, 18+.
Hideout Block Party
September 23 and 24
The Hideout Block Party returns from a two-year hiatus with a lineup including many of the musicians who’ve helped build the community that’s rooted in the cozy venue. Day one celebrates the 60th anniversary of Sputnik’s launch in 1957 with bands featuring players born that year—including Jon Langford (Skull Orchard), Rick Rizzo (Eleventh Dream Day), and Ira Kaplan (Condo Fucks). Steve Albini curated day two, which doubles as a 20th anniversary party for his studio Electrical Audio; among the performers are Man or Astro-Man?, Screaming Females, and Dianogah. —Leor Galil
1 PM on Sat 9/23, noon on Sun 9/24, Hideout, 1354 W. Wabansia, $20-40, all ages.
Hyde Park Jazz Festival
September 23 and 24
This annual fest showcasing Chicago’s rich jazz scene includes some great out-of-town headliners in the two-day lineup of its 11th iteration, among them trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, clarinetist Ben Goldberg, and the duo of drummer Andrew Cyrille & Bill McHenry. As usual, though, locals provide most of the heat: to name just two, veteran saxophonist Ari Brown leads a group with Oliver Lake, and flutist Nicole Mitchell debuts a collaboration with Malian kora master Ballaké Sissoko. —Peter Margasak 1 PM, multiple venues, $5 suggested donation per show, $125 Jazz Pass available for priority seating at all shows. For the full lineup, see hydeparkjazzfestival.org, all ages.
Power in Sound: The Music of Galina Ustvolskaya
October 5 through 7
Organized by composer Nomi Epstein of Aperiodic and adventurous flutist Shanna Gutierrez, this festival shines overdue light on the work of Russian composer Galina Ustvolskaya, who died in 2006—it’s the first major survey of her brooding but often lyrical work outside her homeland. Local musicians will perform solo pieces and chamber works for ensembles large and small, complemented by preconcert discussions, an academic conference, and U.S. premieres of work by young Russian composer Marina Khorkova. —Peter Margasak
Thu 8/5 and Fri 8/6, 8 PM, Logan Center for the Arts, University of Chicago, 915 E. 60th. F b Also Sat 8/7, 3 PM, Pianoforte Studios, 1335 S. Michigan, $15, all ages.
20 Years of Rush Hour
Amsterdam-based label and distributor Rush Hour is a linchpin of the international electronic scene, and it’s got a soft spot for Chicago—earlier this year it released a six-LP box set by local deep-house legend Ron Trent, who’s on tonight’s bill. This anniversary show also features Rush Hour cofounder Antal, whose 2017 cassette mix in the Altered Soul Experiment series is a cross-genre exploration of Japanese music. —Leor Galil
10 PM, Smart Bar, 3730 N. Clark, $20, $17 in advance, $25 after midnight, $10 before 11 PM with student ID, 21+.
In Sight Out with Vince Staples, Chance the Rapper
October 13 and November 17
Even though it’s turning 50 this year, the MCA wants you to know it’s still cool. So it’s collaborating with the kids at Pitchfork on a monthly conversation series called In Sight Out, where writers talk to musicians about music, art, and culture. In October, southern California rapper Vince Staples chats with Pitchfork managing editor Matthew Schnipper; in November, Chance the Rapper sits down with journalist and former Ebony editor Adrienne Samuels Gibbs. And congratulations if you scored tickets to Solange’s talk this week! —Aimee Levitt
6 PM, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, 220 E. Chicago, mcachicago.org, Vince Staples sold out, $20, $10 for students, all ages.
UK doom band Warning have split up twice since forming in 1994, and for the past decade they’ve mostly been gone. These absences have grown the band’s cult, which it attracted for its melodic savvy and the bold, beautifully melancholy vocals of front man Patrick Walker (who’s since started a similar project called 40 Watt Sun). After reuniting to perform 2006’s heart-wrenching Watching From a Distance at Dutch metal fest Roadburn this spring, Warning make a rare trip to the U.S. —Leor Galil
8 PM, Reggie’s Rock Club, 2109 S. State, $23, $17 in advance, 17+.
MusicNow, Vijay Iyer: A Portrait
Pianist, bandleader, and composer Vijay Iyer has become the face of a new breed of musician, conversant and comfortable in myriad styles and always curious to try new things. Though his roots are in jazz, he’s moved into the world of contemporary classical music, and this portrait program presented by the CSO’s MusicNow series offers a wide-angle view of his recent activity—including the first local performance by his duo with trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and a reading of his chamber composition “Time, Place, Action,” dedicated to poet and thinker Amiri Baraka. —Peter Margasak
7 PM, Harris Theater, 205 E. Randolph, $28, all ages.
Chicago Fringe Opera’s As One
November 16 through 19
Chicago Fringe Opera, which has built a reputation for edgy productions of contemporary English-language work, stages the local premiere of this 2014 transgender coming-of-age story. Baritone Jonathan Wilson and mezzo-soprano Samantha Attaguile sing the pre- and post-transition versions of the chamber opera’s single character, Hannah. As One features music for string quartet by Laura Kaminsky (Alexandra Enyart will conduct members of the Chicago-based Zafa Collective), a libretto by Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed, and Reed’s accompanying video. —Deanna Isaacs
7 PM, Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted, $20-$40, all ages.
John Walt Day
Chicago rapper and singer John Walt, a member of crucial hip-hop collective Pivot Gang, would’ve turned 25 on November 25, 2017; he was stabbed to death in River West in February. Pivot has since launched a foundation in his name to benefit young people interested in the arts, and all proceeds from this concert (where every member of the collective will perform) go to the foundation. Saba and Joseph Chilliams—both of them among the best rappers in the city—are even harder to turn down when they’re turning up for the community. —Leor Galil
6 PM, House of Blues, 329 N. Dearborn, $18. v