Art Basel's Got Music Too

A day-by-day breakdown of the best shows.

Separating visual arts from music is artificial, if not impossible. Organizers of Art Basel Miami Beach recognized this from the beginning with the Scissor Sisters concert. The free concert tradition has continued each year, with the fair's official opening followed by its Art Loves Music party on the sand.

But as Art Basel has become more party-centric, the importance of visiting bands and DJs has expanded. Art collectors like to feel hip by being at parties full of young, attractive people, and young, attractive people are attracted by good music (and free booze). Or something. So voila — the week of Basel now features a smorgasbord of forward-thinking music programming. Here's a quick guide to some highlights.

For up-to-date show announcements and morning-after coverage of the parties, visit CrossFade, New Times' local music scene blog, at

Matt & Kim tear up the Design District on Thursday.
Matt & Kim tear up the Design District on Thursday.


Rahsaan, Parable, and Madlib: First things first: Madlib, the MC also known as Quasimoto, won't be rapping tonight. Instead, he's leaving the verbal duties to two local luminaries: Rahsaan, the Miramar-based MC who recently dropped his excellent Fly Paper mixtape, and Parable, a resident host of Jazid's new Fuck It Fridays party. Madlib will, however, throw down as a DJ, an arena in which he is equally, if not more, skilled. Expect rare platters of funk and the roof to blow off. The event is free, but you absolutely must RVSP. 8 p.m.; free with RSVP at; Black Sheep, 721 N. Lincoln Ln., Miami Beach; 305-531-7700,

Nodzzz and Matt & Kim: Some of the best music presented this week comes courtesy of the ongoing Converse-sponsored Kill Your Idols party in the Design District. An ode to current movers and shakers keeping the original punk spirit alive (albeit in mutated, advanced forms), the space features a photo exhibit by Eileen Polk plus flyers, posters, and various limited-edition goodies. Oh yeah, and a totally free, open-to-the-public show every night at 9. Up first tonight is the Frisco trio Nodzzz, lovably sloppy but influenced by the biting power-pop edge of groups such as the Buzzcocks. The draw for hipsters, though, is Matt & Kim, the Brooklyn-based dancey, punky duo that appears to be the happiest pair of musicians ever. Free and open to the public; 9 p.m.; The Marcy Building, 3852 N. Miami Ave., Miami,

The Gossip "After Dark": This isn't a live performance by The Gossip per se. But the band will most certainly be in the house at O.H.W.O.W. tonight for a party following the opening of "Portland Now," a group show at the Bas Fisher Invitational space. (It's curated by the band's guitarist, Brace Pain, a.k.a. Nathan Howdeshell.) From 9 p.m. to 2 a.m., the band basically gets to do whatever it wants, which will include, we're told, karaoke, freestyle, video art, "and other weird things." Oh, and complimentary cocktails. Free and open to the public; 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.; O.H.W.O.W., 3100 NW Seventh Ave., Miami; 305-490-2076,


Hex Dispensers, Brutal Knights, and Reigning Sound: The party continues at the Kill Your Idols space tonight, first with Hex Dispensers, an Austin quartet that overdosed on the Ramones but not so much the Beach Boys (it's a good thing!). Brutal Knights hail from the much colder climes of Toronto and title their fun ditties things such as "Grow Up Throw Up." Headlining is the Southern-fried, garage-punk-and-roll foursome Reigning Sound, originally from Memphis but now based in Asheville, North Carolina. Free and open to the public; 9 p.m.; The Marcy Building, 3852 N. Miami Ave., Miami;

ADULT.: Pretend the heady days of the late-electroclash backwash are still alive when the Detroit duo ADULT. plays at White Room. Husband and wife Adam Lee Miller and Nicola Kuperus have been playing together as various projects since 1998, but peaked in popularity around 2002 or 2003 as ADULT., with chilly, synth-driven incantations such as "Glue Your Eyelids Together." Still, the duo has continued to play music and create art; 2007 saw the release of a fourth full-length, Why Bother, as well as several singles. And both Miller and Kuperus continue to create visual art. In fact, besides the show, ADULT. is in town for a screening of Kuperus's film Decampment, to be shown at Hernan Bas's Wynwood studio December 4 and 5. Orlando act Yip Yip opens the concert. 10 p.m.; $10; ages 18+ with ID; White Room, 1306 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 305-995-5060,

Louder than Bombs, a Smiths Tribute, featuring an Andy Rourke DJ set: Static Interference, the occasional locals-only extravaganza thrown by the band Astari Nite at PS14, continues during Art Basel with a night dedicated to a band everyone likes: the Smiths. Besides Astari Nite, a ton of other Miami acts perform, including The Monday Photo, Champagne Days, The Mission Veo, and Down Home Southernaires. They'll be playing mostly originals, though, and brave are the musicians who actually tackle a Smiths tune. Andy Rourke, the band's original bassist, holds court as the DJ between sets. $10; 10 p.m.; ages 18+ with ID; PS14, 28 NE 14th St., Miami; 305-358-2600,

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