The name suggests they may be trying to raise the dead, and it’s not hard to imagine the ghosts of country troubadours, anonymous bluesmen and gentlemen of leisure ordering up an Evan Williams and taking in one of their sets. There’s a dense deliberation to every note they play and a casual strength in their weighty roots rock, which ranges from dusty ballads to outlawed boogie. Boneyard Rattlers celebrate their first EP release Saturday; they’ll do it again May 10 at Shine Coffee House. With Too Much Fiction. 1001 R St., Sacramento. $5. www.foxandgoose.com.
Toad the Wet Sprocket
Perhaps it’s the curse of any band with a big hit or two to be at risk of being pigeonholed: Is it a ’90s band, or a band that just happened to break through in the ’90s? For years, it looked like the former. On the heels of a run of successful singles, most notably “All I Want,” Toad the Wet Sprocket broke up in 1998 while frontman Glen Phillips pursued various other projects, including collaborations with members of Nickel Creek. After reuniting full time in 2010 and releasing their its new record in 16 years, “New Constellation” in 2013, TTWS appears to be more of the latter – a rock band that’s been far more sundry than its alt-rock dominance of the ’90s would lead one to think. With Tommy and the High Pilots. Doors open 7 p.m. 2708 J St., Sacramento. $40. www.harlows.com.
There can be plenty of argument about the level of “genius” behind Wu-Tang Clan’s single-copy release of a secret album, and about current reports of scuffles and infighting between the legendary hip-hop troupe and its de facto leader, RZA. What is inarguable is the lyrical mastery of the more overlooked GZA, a.k.a. “The Genius,” the Wu-Tang member behind the commercial popularity of Method Man, Raekwon and Ghostface Killah. GZA regularly ranks on lists of top emcees – and overall lyricists, for that matter – of the past two decades, since he launched his solo career in the mid-’90s. With Tel Cairo, Agustus ThElefant, The Gatlin and Dre T. 1000 K St., Sacramento. $15. www.assemblysacramento.com.
Looking ahead: Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers. May 30 at Assembly
This seems like a small venue for this band. Last year was huge for Nicki Bluhm, and with a slot at Outside Lands in August, 2014 could be even bigger. 1000 K St., Sacramento. $20. www.assemblysacramento.com.