John & Yoko: Above Us Only Sky. Director Michael Epstein’s movie documents the making of John Lennon’s album Imagine, with largely unseen footage of sessions at Tittenhurst Park in England, where he lived with Yoko Ono before the couple decamped to America in 1971. George Harrison, Phil Spector, Eric Clapton, and photographer David Bailey are among many luminaries meandering in and out in the intimate portrait that shines a light on one of the greatest of post-Beatles solo albums. Streaming on Netflix.
Okkervil River. Will Sheff is such a skilled storyteller that he was able to pull off opening In the Rainbow Rain, last year’s Okkervil River album, with a song called “Famous Tracheotomies” that’s neither a joke nor completely gross. (The song includes true-life verses about Ray Davies, Mary Wells, Dylan Thomas, and Sheff himself.) The songwriter is releasing a 12-album series of concert recordings this year called A Dream In the Dark that chronicles the history of the band named after a Tatyana Tolstaya short story. Tuesday at World Cafe Live.
The Mekons. For 40 years now, the Mekons have been true to the spirit of punk rock. Which means not that they wear studded leather jackets and bash out three chords over and over, but that the band is an ongoing art project that abides by no rules, forever following creative compulsion. In the case of the new Deserted, the British band now largely based in Chicago headed to a studio outside Joshua Tree National Park in California to write songs about being strangers in a strange land. The band fronted by Jon Langford, Sally Timms, and Tom Greenhalgh doesn’t often make it to Philadelphia, so this is a rare treat. Thursday at Johnny Brenda’s.
Wiz Khalifa. The Pittsburgh weed-friendly rapper born Cameron Thomaz is on the road behind his 2008 album Rolling Papers 2 and new mixtape Fly Times Vol. 1: The Good Fly Young. Also joining him on The Decent Exposure tour are French Montana, Playboi Carti, Moneybagg Yo, Chevy Woods, and DJ Drama. Thursday at BB&T Pavilion.