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Postal Service, The Zombies and Solange Play New York

 Check out the great live music playing in New York City between Wed, June 12 and Tues, June 18.
Gigs of the week Wednesday, June 12
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If you want to listen to the music while you read, click here for my Spotify playlist featuring some of the music mentioned in this article.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013
Devendra Banhart's latest album "Mala" sees the eclectic Venezuelan American folkie expand his sound while delivering one of his most cohesive albums in years. According to Consequence Of Sound music blog, "Mala" "may not stand as the zenith of the man’s catalogue, but it’s a highlight worth exploring and a dreamy journey for the taking." At Town Hall New York.

Chickfactor Magazine's annual summer music festival continues tonight at the Bell House. Featuring another crop of some of the finest indie pop sounds you'll hear anywhere: Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt's other band Future Bible Heroes, The Aluminium Group, Honeybunch, True Love Always.

Thursday, 13 June
Brooklyn's 2013 Northside Festival launches today — check various highlighted music events below.

Fronted by underground hero Michael Gira, Swans are a New York-based post-punk outfit which was originally active between 1982 to 1997. Of their name, Gira commented, "Swans are majestic, beautiful looking creatures. With really ugly temperaments." In 2010, Gira reactivated Swans and has released two new studio albums: "My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky" in 2010, and 2012's highly acclaimed "The Seer." Part of the 2013 Northside Festival, Brooklyn at Warsaw.

Also tonight: An excellent double bill at Music Hall of Williamsburg tonight features Danish rockers Iceage and A Place to Bury Strangers. Formed in 2008, Iceage already has one classic album under its belt - 2011's "New Brigade." Pitchfork music blog described the sound as "mixing the black atmosphere of goth, the wild-limbed whoosh of hardcore and the clangor of post-punk." New York–based A Place To Bury Strangers plays a heavy, atmospheric blend of psychedelic, shoegaze and space rock. Part of the 2013 Northside Festival, Brooklyn.

Friday, 14 June 2013
Mavis Staples is a gifted R&B and gospel singer, actress and civil rights activist who first recorded with The Staple Singers, her family's band, in the mid '50s. She went solo in the late '60s and has been lately enjoying the attention of notable producers Ry Cooder (2007's "We'll Never Turn Back" and Wilco's Jeff Tweedy on 2010's "You Are Not Alone." Staples was also recently recognized as one of Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Singers of All Time and was also included in VH1’s 100 Greatest Women of Rock and Roll. Part of Celebrate Brooklyn, at the Prospect Park Bandshell.

Also tonight: Indie dance poppers Postal Service is a recently revived collaboration between Jimmy Tamborello (Dntel) and Ben Gibbard (Death Cab For Cutie). They're enjoying their first tour since 2003 in celebration of the 10th anniversary of their classic album "Give Up" and play the first of two nights at Barclays Center, tonight with Mates of State and tomorrow with Ra Ra Riot.

Saturday, 15 June 2013
A night of '50s and '60s inspired garage rock and soul is being unleashed tonight at one of New York's most unique venues, Brooklyn Bowl — a bowling alley situated in a century-old former iron foundry. Detroit's noisy rustbelt rockers The Gories headline alongside Brooklyn's blues believers Daddy Long Legs with DJ Jonathan Toubin spinning the 45s.

Also tonight: Another great free concert as part of the Central Park Summer Stage program features 60's rock legends The Zombies, UK's indie dance rockers Django Django and Adam Green and Binki Shapiro's new project at Central Park. From 6pm.

And: Hardcore punk legends Black Flag play Warsaw and beautiful ambient Americana fits the bill with Calexico at Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandshell.

Sunday, 16 June 2013
Originally the one-man project of Luis Vasquez (now a full blown band), The Soft Moon gives the darkly hypnotic sounds of Suicide, Joy Division, Bauhaus, and Krautrock new life with a stripped-down, lo-fi approach. Vasquez is also inspired by his Afro-Cuban heritage and the wide-open spaces of the Mojave Desert where he was raised. Hear them do their thing at 285 Kent Ave.

Also tonight: Although overshadowed by her big sister Beyoncé, Solange Knowles has carved her own path in the the entertainment world, dabbling in acting and fashion, but it is in music where her heart lies. Since signing with Grizzly Bear Chris Taylor's record label Terrible Records she has been working on new material, the recently released "True" EP (watch the video for the "Losing You" single here), her first new release since "Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams" hit the top 10 in 2008. At McCarren Park as part of the 2013 Northside Festival, Brooklyn.

And: Abstract indie hip hop collective Why? play Europa while heartfelt Americana legends Lambchop play Warsaw.  Both are part of the 2013 Northside Festival, Brooklyn.

Monday, 17 June 2013
Scottish electropop band CHVRCHES are in town again for two gigs (they were here in March 2013 too) - first, tonight at Webster Hall - and tomorrow at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Inspired by the sounds and aesthetic of 80's icons Prince, Depeche Mode and Kate Bush, the up and coming Glasgow-based band recently signed with Glassnote Records in America, home to Phoenix and Mumford & Sons, and have just released a super catchy new EP "Recover".

Also tonight: In August Ludlow Street's The Living Room will be moving to a new premises (check out their crowd-sourced fundraising page here). All the more reason to take in one of their Monday night sessions featuring at 9pm The Tony Scherr Trio and at 10pm The Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey & Josh Dion. Both Scherr and Campilongo are outstanding, soulful guitarists, well at home in the cosy The Living Room. Jim Campilongo has been busy doing lead guitar duties with Martha Wainwright and The Little Willies, his band with Norah Jones. In 2011 Fender Guitars bestowed Jim the honor of the Campilongo Signature Telecaster.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013
The English Beat launch City Winery's Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival — a free "After-Work Backyard Party" held every Tuesday through August 27th, from 5 'til 7.30pm. Birmingham's The English Beat formed during a period of high unemployment and social upheaval and during their first incarnation from 1978-1983 provided an upbeat soundtrack that combined both wryly observed social commentary and purely hedonistic escapism. Although the multiracial band racked up over a dozen UK hits, including "Tears of a Clown," "Ranking Full Stop," Hands Off...She's Mine," "Mirror in the Bathroom," "Stand Down Margaret," "Save It for Later," elsewhere the band was more marginalized. Combining ska, pop, soul, reggae and punk rock, the band was at the forefront of the 2 Tone Ska revival alongside The Specials and Madness.