Darrius Willrich at the Triple Door, 7:30 p.m., $30, all ages
Keys-and-voice guy Darrius Willrich (pictured) does "grown and sexy" R&B with semi-hard beats, kind of like Quiet Storm hip hop. It's a mature style, churched-up and with a jazzy edge, and takes urban sounds to warm, elegant heights. Not elegant NEW heights, mind you--female Seattle sensation Choklate delivers similar music to audiences all across town, sometimes with Willrich on stage--but it's still top-shelf soul. It's also all-local, from schooling (Willrich went to Cornish) to producing (backdrops are courtesy local guy Vitamin D, an erstwhile hip hop star) to recording (across the street from The Seattle Times, at the Woodshed on Fairview). ANDREW MATSON
Exohxo, Jeff Janis at Showbox at the Market, 8 p.m., $5
Exohxo is a Speaker Speaker side project that specializes in lovely little folk songs with lots of strings. It's a crowded bandwagon they've jumped on, but for all the people that make that kind of music in this city, there aren't many who are truly spectacular at it. These guys, however, show tons of promise and are definitely worth checking out. Their demos on MySpace already proves that they're capable of mature songwriting-- not only when it comes to the music, either, but the lyrics as well. This band won't be playing $5 shows for much longer, so I recommend checking them out if you're free.
The Ghost of Kyle Bradford, Michael Vermillion, Zoe Muth at Chop Suey, 8 p.m., $6
One of the newer local acts I've been following with keen interest in recent months is Ghost of Kyle Bradford, a.k.a. dude-with-acoustic-guitar Kyle Hawkins. It's the vocal delivery that does it for me: Hawkins possesses a rough, husky whisper that's neither pretty, nor grating, but is simply soulful and real, somewhere between world-weary and hopeful - think Paul Westerberg singing in a hushed voice at midnight to a sleeping baby, warning of life's troubles and disappointments but stressing the small joys to come, too. Hawkins' guitar strums are rudimentary yet effective, propelling things forward and placing the focus where it probably should be - that voice, the haunting melodies, his vivid imagery of lonely bars and mocking stars. And songs that live in the darkness before the dawn, letting in light just when you need them to. MICHAEL ALAN GOLDBERG