Your 5 best bets for upcoming music in Las Vegas

SHOT THROUGH THE ART

Puscifer has always allowed Maynard James Keenan to indulge his artistic inclinations uninhibitedly without being subjected to sort of the scrutiny Tool or A Perfect Circle attract. Since nobody has really had high expectations of Puscifer’s output, the act has been able to progress at its own pace. Hear the progression on “Money Shot,” the band’s latest album, which delivers on its name. Catch an earful Saturday at The Pearl at the Palms. Tickets are $48.62-$94.50; the show is at 8 p.m.

STARRY EYED

If you’re a die-hard “Star Wars” fan and counting the seconds until next week when “Episode VII” drops, here’s something that might interest you: After marrying his own rhymes to Star Wars inspired setups on a pair of past mixtapes, Richie Branson has moved on to something slightly more scintillating, mating the movie’s music to the masterful raps of Notorious B.I.G. on a new mix called “Life After Death Star” with his Otaku Gang cohort Solar Slim. While it doesn’t sounds quite as satisfying as you’d hope, it’s worth seeking out (lifeafterdeathstar.net)

KILLER BILL

The Killers are set to be the inaugural act at the Las Vegas Arena next spring. It’s going to be an all-local love affair with Wayne Newton and Sharmir also sharing the bill. Before that happens, though, there’s still some seasons greetings to send out. In case you missed it, last week Brandon Flowers and company brought tidings of comfort and joy to “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” with the host sitting in again as Santa for a stirring rendition of “Joel the Lump of Coal,” last year’s seasonal ode. If you haven’t heard this year’s ditty, “Dirt Sledding,” check out the video.

MIND READER

Oh, and speaking of the hometown heroes, here’s another Killers-related present of sorts to please the act’s legion of local fans and it comes just in time for the holidays. David Bazan, the indie singer-songwriter extraordinaire, recently served up a subdued version of “Read My Mind” from “Sam’s Town” for inclusion on “Polyvinyl’s 4-Track Singles Series Vol. 2.” Bazan has a powerful voice, and it’s a real treat to hear him take on that track. (polyvinylrecords.com/singlesseries).

ISLAND GOODNESS

Man, if you didn’t make it out to see Maoli the last time the band was in town in August, well, let’s just say you missed a massively good time. The Hawaii-based outfit plays some of the smoothest grooves you’re going to set your ears on. Seriously. The reggae-inspired R&B is about as stirring as it gets. Sample the group’s songs for yourself. Take a test drive of tunes such as “Time to Get Over,” “Rock Me Sober” and “Blew It” and then head over Brooklyn Bowl on Tuesday. Tickets are $15; the show is at 8 p.m.

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