Fri. Jan. 29 -- Vibraphonist Nick Mancini's ensemble pulls you into the invigorating melodic world of his oughta-be-classic "Storyteller" jazz song cycle, and debuts a bunch of new tunes about the Egyptian pyramids, no less. Eclectic guitarist Will Brahm opens with singer Afton Hefley and then his own Homenaje group. Neither mind nor body will go hungry. At the E Spot Lounge (formerly Upstairs at Vitello's), 4349 Tujunga Ave., Studio City 91604; 8pm; $15 plus two-drink minimum; (818) 769-0905; www.vitellosrestaurant.com.
Fri.-Sat. Jan. 29-30 -- Five-string violinist Miguel Atwood-Ferguson ain't worried about categories; he just throws his cohesive, penetrating conceptions at yer skull so precisely that you can't help but grok. He'll be using these performances for recordings, so your claps may be immortalized (but stay home if you've got a cough). Super band: guitarist Jeff Parker, pianist Josh Nelson, tenor man Walter Smith III, altoist Josh Johnson, bassist Kaveh Rastegar, drummer Jamire Williams, percussionist Carlos Niño and, for your eyeballs, projections by Jesse Gilbert. At the Blue Whale on the third level of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $27; 21+; parking $5 underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Sat. Jan. 30 -- Rich-toned, well traveled saxist Justo Almario strolls on the Latin side with pianist Rique Pantoja, bassist Guillermon Guzman and drummer Aaron Serfaty. Check out the new club, with bookings by Cathy Segal-Garcia. In Bar Fedora in vegan restaurant Au Lac, 710 W. First St., downtown 90012 (behind REDCAT); 7:30-11pm; $20-$25 (students $10) plus two-item minimum, reservations advisable at www.saturdaynightjazzdtla.com; $7 underground parking.
Sat. Jan. 30 -- Trumpeter Elliott Caine settles you in at around 1960 and swings you forward with his personally informed souljazz compositions. At Colombo's Restaurant, 1833 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock 90041; 9:30pm-midnight; no cover; (323) 254-9138.
Sat. Jan. 30 -- Bug-eyed vocalist Katon de Pena and early Cali thrashers Hirax resurrect the scene of the '80s rock venue Fender's Ballroom with Ruthless, Heretic, Tormenter, Madrost. At the Lava Lounge in DiPiazza, 5205 E. Pacific Coast Highway, Long Beach 90804; (562) 498-2461; www.dipiazzas.com.
Mon. Feb. 1 -- Tuneful pianist-composer Richard Sears teams with fully employed tenor saxist Walter Smith III, alto saxist Sam Gendel, bassist Eric Revis and veteran drummer Roy McCurdy to swing Angeleno style. At the Blue Whale on the third level of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $15; 21+; parking $5 underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Tues. Feb. 2 -- Last night I wallowed in the entire last two albums by Nile, and though 2012's "At the Gate of Sethu" wins out for dense guitar sounds, deep production and memorable songwriting, 2015's "What Should Not Be Unearthed" grabs the flail if you prefer the South Carolina death thrashers at their most abstractly alienated; I await the day when Nile and Nick Mancini can bond over their love of ancient Egypt. With Cranial Engorgement, Servile Conceptions, Ninth Plague, Taipan, Festering Grave, What Is Ignis. At the Whisky, 8901 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood 90069; doors 6pm; $20; www.whiskyagogo.com; (310) 652-4202.
Wed. Feb. 3 -- New-generation thrashers Warbringer mount the assault with Enforcer, Exmortus, Cauldron, Destroyer, Ophiuchus. At the Whisky, 8901 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood 90069; doors 7pm; $20; www.whiskyagogo.com; (310) 652-4202.
Wed. Feb. 3 -- Kaveh Rastegar, the bassist from Kneebody, convenes a group to fuse the grooving postmodern jazz. At the Blue Whale on the third level of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $15; 21+; parking $5 underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Paul Kantner RIP: When singer Marty Balin brought in Paul Kantner to form Jefferson Airplane in 1965, Kantner quickly took a leading role, becoming the psychedelic sextet's "Nazi," as Grace Slick affectionately called him. In a group always likely to fly off in every direction, Kantner's clanging rhythm guitar and gruff vocals provided a vital center. He also wrote some of the Airplane's best songs, such as the churning, defiant "Crown of Creation," the hopeful anthem "We Can Be Together" and most of the late-1967 album "After Bathing at Baxter's," which numbers in my all-time Top 5 rock records. After Kantner seized greater control with Jefferson Starship, the adventure diminished at the same time that sales increased -- well, the man deserved the paycheck. May he ignite a revolution in heaven.
* * *