David August Headlines This Weeks Must-See Acts

David August at August Hall on Thursday, Gallant at Great American Music Hall on Wednesday, Seth Troxler at Great Northern on Sunday.

Electronic

David August

9 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 13, at August Hall. $25; augusthallsf.com

A true maestro who produces sweeping electronic compositions marked by hopeful melodies and warm atmospherics, David August’s impressive creative versatility is heard throughout his sonically-diverse discography. Born in Hamburg, the classically trained multi-instrumentalist has been playing the piano since his youth, and began playing in Berlin’s prestigious nightclubs while still in his teens. While August’s earlier, house-intensive material like his 2013 debut album Times continues to throb in cavernous warehouses, the virtuoso’s sound has steadily become more meditative and ambient, which is exemplified in August’s 2018 album, DCXXXIX A.C.  As a Tonmeister graduate, August’s natural talent for crafting intricately-detailed soundscapes can be heard in both DCXXXIX A.C. and his most recent album, D’ANGELO, where August navigates a space occupied by both anxious and enchanting tones. Whether playing a night at Berghain or conducting an orchestra, August has shown time and time throughout his career that he is capable of controlling any musical environment he finds himself in. 

Photo by Lamont Roberson II

R&B

Gallant 

8 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 19, at Great American Music Hall. $30; slimspresents.com

Blending old-school soul with various shades of fluorescent R&B, Gallant is a legitimate architect of the genre, as the singer-songwriter commands any track he’s found on. Born Christopher Gallant in Maryland, the artist studied music at New York University before moving to LA to further his music career, releasing his low-key debut EP Zebra in 2014. Gallant steadily built his name in LA through acclaimed live shows and left-field collaborations with the likes of Sufjan Stevens and Jhené Aiko, building up to the release of his 2016 debut album, Ology, a colorful and smooth effort that hears Gallant seamlessly weave through R&B’s history, while keeping his eyes set firmly on the genre’s future. The Grammy-nominated Ology elevated Gallant into a bonafide R&B star, and would follow up the album’s success with 2019’s Sweet Insomnia, a tightly-condensed serving of dynamic R&B where the musician channels bedroom sensuality in the Usher-like “Sleep On It,” and delivers a sultry late-night ballad with the moody titular track. 

Courtesy of Artist

House/techno

Seth Troxler

2 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 16, at The Great Northern. $30; thegreatnorthernsf.com

One of the most influential figures in the past decade of underground dance music, Seth Troxler is a seasoned purveyor of electronic music’s history, well-versed in house, techno, and everything in between. Raised in the birthplace of techno, Detroit, Troxler spent his youth absorbing the city’s underground rave scene, DJing the city’s top techno nightclubs by the time he was 16. After college, Troxler would move to Berlin just as the new wave of minimal techno was setting in, and Troxler would soon become one of the most acclaimed DJs in Berlin. Since moving to Europe, Troxler has held residencies at prestigious clubs like London’s fabric and Ibiza’s DC10 in addition to appearances at music festivals like Glastonbury, with audiences around the world captivated by Troxler’s meticulous yet rewarding approach with his mixing prowess. Troxler’s latest Coming Home tour sees the DJ return to the United States for his first proper stateside tour in over 13 years, hoping to reconnect with the intimate, marathon-club sets that defined the beginnings of his career. 

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