Ed Masley Arizona Republic
Published 12:36 AM EDT Apr 2, 2019
Carrie Underwood and Ariana Grande are headed our way this spring, as are several major festivals, from Phoenix Lights and Country Thunder to FORM Arcosanti.
Here’s a look at those and other highlights of the season.
4/3: Dance Gavin Dance
These post-hardcore veterans have fathered an entire genre, Swancore, characterized by their signature blend of math-rock, prog and post-rock. Of course, that mix of genres doesn’t take into account the way Jon Mess’ unhinged howls of terror are offset by soaring ethereal vocals from Tilian Pearson.
Details: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 3. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $30; $27.50 in advance. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
4/3: Vince Neil
He’s the voice of Motley Crue, the subject of a much-anticipated Netflix film “The Dirt,” based on the glam-metal hitmakers’ autobiography of the same name. The Crue’s farewell tour played the Valley twice – in 2014 and again in 2015.
But last year, they announced that they had reunited and were working on new music. In the meantime, Neil has promised to play all the Crue hits on this solo tour.
Details: 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 3. BLK Live, 7301 E. Butherus Dr., Scottsdale. $40. 480-494-5069, blkliveaz.com.
These Christian rockers had released six independent albums by the time they signed to INO, the label that released their double-platinum breakthrough “Almost There” in 2001.
That breakthrough was driven in large part by the crossover success of the song “I Can Only Imagine,” which picked up two Dove Awards, the first of eight they would go on to win, including artist of the year in 2004. The song also inspired a 2018 surprise hit film of the same name, which traced the band’s origins.
Details: 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4. Gila River Arena, 9400 W. Maryland Ave., Glendale. $15.25 and up. 623-772-3800, ticketmaster.com.
4/4-5: Taking Back Sunday
These Long Island-based emo sensations are playing two nights in a row on a tour celebrating their 20th anniversary. They’re playing their acclaimed debut, “Tell All Your Friends,” in its entirety at all stops on the tour. In cities like Tempe, where they’re performing twice, they’ll flip a special coin each night to decide if fans will also hear them dust off “Where You Want To Be” or “Louder Now” in full.
Details: 8 p.m. Thursday, April 4, and Friday, April 5. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $25-$45. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
4/5: Buddy Guy with Jimmie Vaughan
The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and consummate showman arrives in support of the “The Blues is Alive and Well,” which recently picked up a Grammy for best traditional blues album, on a tour with Jimmie Vaughan of the Fabulous Thunderbirds.
A house guitarist at Chess Records in the ’60s, a decade in which he also toured in Muddy Waters’ band, Guy was recently voted the 30th best guitarist of all time in Rolling Stone. But Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton would have placed him higher.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, April 5. Celebrity Theatre, 440 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. $40-$95. 602-267-1600, celebritytheatre.com.
4/5: Al Stewart
This British singer-songwriter is best remembered for two major pop hits he had in the ’70s, “Year of the Cat” and “Time Passages.”
Stewart and his backing band, the Empty Pockets, are playing the “Year Of The Cat” LP in its entirety and a second set of songs from other albums including “Time Passages.” This show sold out in two days at London’s Royal Albert Hall
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, April 5. Talking Stick Resort, 9800 E. Talking Stick Way, Salt River Reservation. $25-$75. 480-850-7777, talkingstickresort.com.
4/5-6: Phoenix Lights
The fifth annual Phoenix Lights festival brings Kaskade, Excision, Arty, A$AP Ferg; Claude VonStroke, Decadon, GRiZ, Jay Lumen, Jeremy Olander, Malaa, Mustard, Party Favor, San Holo, Sasha, Shiba San, Spencer Brown, and Throttle.
Details: 5 p.m. Friday, April 5, to 2 a.m. Saturday, April 6. to 2 a.m. Saturday-2 a.m., Friday and Saturday, April 5 and 6. The Park at W. Wild Horse Pass, Wild Horse Pass Road, Chandler. $149 general admission; $249 VIP; $619 Platinum VIP. phoenixlightsfest.com.
4/6: Road to Country Thunder
The town of Florence, Country Thunder and KMLE (107.9 FM) are celebrating the Southwest’s greatest country music festival with a little party of their own a week early.
The Road to Country Thunder is paved with live performances by local country artists Ryan and the Renegades, Austin Burke and Harry Luge Jr., with KMLE spinning tunes before, between and after those performances.
Details: 5-11 p.m. Saturday, April 6. Historic Main Street, Florence. Free. 520-868-7585, florenceaz.gov.
4/7: ‘Urban Cowboy’ reunion
Mickey Gilley and Johnny Lee are dusting off the songs that helped take “Urban Cowboy” to the masses when it ushered in the ’80s with John Travolta trading in his polyester disco suit for a look much better suit for a night at Gilley’s Texas nightclub.
The soundtrack topped the country album chart while spawning hits for Gilley, who sent his version of the Ben E. King hit “Stand By Me” to No. 1 on Billboard’s country chart, and Lee, who did the same with ”Lookin’ for Love.”
Details: 5:30 p.m. Sunday, April 7. Orpheum Theatre, 203 W. Adams St., Phoenix. $30-$75. 800-282-4842, phoenix.ticketforce.com.
It’s not for nothing that DIY Magazine invoked the names of Real Estate and Beach House in trying to capture the summery breeze that blows through “Good Nature,” their latest release.
It’s an atmospheric daydream of a record. And as Pitchfork notes, their move to California may have seeped into the album’s “warm embrace of the area’s soft-focus spirituality and the optimism of young, beautiful creatives without much to worry about.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 9. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $23.50-$53.50. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
4/9: Quinn XCII
From Tour With Love is named in honor of “From Michigan With Love,” the Detroit singer’s sophomore album. If you’re going, be prepared to feel.
As he told Billboard, when his friends come see him play, ”Some of my friends are bigger football-player dudes, and they’re bawling like, ‘Oh, my God, dude. I didn’t know you were so emotional. I’m so proud of you…’ It’s like therapy for them.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 9. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. $25 and up. 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
4/10: Kero Kero Bonito
These London-based rockers are touring the States in continued support of last year’s “Time ‘N’ Place,” on which they filtered the sugary pop sensibilities on which their buzz was built through a grittier aesthetic, often driven by punkish distorted guitars.
The chorus hook of “Only Acting” kicks in with the fuzz-laden charms of Nirvana gone bubblegum, making the most of Japanese-born singer Sarah Bonito’s airy, disarmingly childlike vocals.
Details: 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 10. Nile Theater, 105 W. Main St., Mesa. $17; $15 in advance. www.niletheater.com.
These Australians are touring a self-titled full-length debut whose funkier moments effortlessly live up to the promise of the song that made them overnight sensations of a sort – 2017’s Daft Punk collaboration “Overnight.”
But does it translate live? It worked on NME, whose critic gushed, ”Their stellar live shows offer swishing hair, immaculate dance steps and pulsating breakdowns that would turn your average pop hit into a Giorgio Moroder-sized classic.”
Details: 8 p.m. Thursday, April 11. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $20; $18 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
4/11-14: Country Thunder
Country Thunder Arizona has lined up some serious star power with headlining sets by Chris Stapleton, Tim McGraw, hometown hero Dierks Bentley and Brett Eldredge.
The lineup that also features Brothers Osborne, High Valley, Restless Heart, Trace Adkins, Clay Walker, the original lineup of Lonestar, Abby Anderson, Brandon Lay, Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives, Morgan Evans, Craig Campbell, Austin Burke, the Josh Abbott Band and the Hunter Brothers.
Comic duo Willams & Ree will also perform.
Country Thunder had a record-breaking year in Arizona last year in addition to earning the ACM Festival of the Year Award.
Details: Thursday through Sunday, April 11-14. 20585 E. Price Station, Florence. $75 daily; $160 weekend pass; $6000 platinum experience. countrythunder.com/az.
4/11-15: Arizona Bike Week
Arizona Bike Week gets off to a rowdy start on Wednesday with Buckcherry, followed by George Thorogood and the Destroyers on Thursday, 3 Doors Down on Friday, and Godsmack on Saturday.
They’ll also have local bands playing in the hours leading up to each night’s main event, including Dierdre, Sara Robinson Band and Conrad Varela.
Details: 9 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, April 11-15. The RockYard at WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 N. Pima Road. $28 single-day admission Wednesday and Thursday; $33 single-day admission Friday and Saturday; $63 weekend pass. azbikeweek.com.
4/13: Wayne Newton
Mr. Las Vegas was discovered in his junior year at North High by a talent scout while singing with his brother Jerry on “The Lew King Rangers Show,” a Phoenix talent show. For the next five years, the Newton brothers did six shows a week in Vegas. By 1963, he’d signed to Capitol, hitting the charts with his signature song, “Danke Schoen.”
Other hits include “Red Roses For a Blue Lady,” “Daddy Don’t You Walk So Fast” and 1980’s “Years.”
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, April 13. Wild Horse Pass Hotel & Casino, 5040 W. Wild Horse Pass Blvd., Gila River Reservation. $37-$77. 800-946-4452, wingilariver.com.
4/13: Better Oblivion Community Center
Conor Oberst and Phoebe Bridgers first collaborated on the duet “Would You Rather,” among the many haunted highlights of Bridgers’ 2017 debut, “Stranger in the Alps.”
And apparently, they hit it off – enough to record a full album as Better Oblivion Community Center that plays to both their strengths while highlighting their chemistry.
As Sputnik Music says, “It’s full of charming melodies, carefully placed harmonies, and biting lyrics from two of the most influential songwriters around.”
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, April 13. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. SOLD OUT. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
4/15: The 1975
The young rock sensations from Manchester, England, will launch their U.S. tour in Phoenix with Pale Waves and No Rome in support of “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships,” their third album.
Their previous release, “I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It,” topped the Billboard album charts and won Best Album at the Q Awards for a sophomore effort called
Details: 7 p.m. Monday, April 15. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. Resale prices vary. 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
This hard-hitting rapper from Yonkers exploded on impact when his 1998 debut, ”It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot,” began a string of five chart-topping entries on the Billboard album chart, going on to be certified quadruple-platinum.
The best of DMX’s music is as dark as that first album advertised. As Rolling Stone noted, he became a “multiplatinum hip-hop phenom who rhymed about blood and grime at a time when the status quo was champagne and diamonds.”
Details: 8 p.m. Thursday, April 18. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $30-$35. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
4/19-20: Days on the Green
Slightly Stoopid and Sublime with Rome will headline the inaugural Days on the Green Music Festival at Fear Farm.
The performers all mix elements of reggae, world music, punk and blues. The festival includes two stages with national and local bands, state-of-the-art production, a food court, vendor village and more.
Slightly Stoopid headline Friday, April 19, with Iration, Tribal Seeds, Common Kings, Fortunate Youth, Hirie and Tyrone’s Jacket.
Sublime with Rome headline Saturday, April 20, with Dirty Heads, Katastro, Pacific Dub, Bikini Trill, The Supervillains, Law and Barefoot.
Details: noon. Friday, April 19-Saturday, April 20. Fear Farm, 2209 N. 99th Ave., Phoenix. $55 a day; $94.50 weekend pass; VIP $132.50 daily; $250 VIP weekend. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
4/19: Bhad Bhabie
This 16-year-old rapper first tasted fame as a video meme after an episode of “Dr. Phil” in September 2016 with her mom, where she famously uttered the viral catchphrase that earned her a deal with Atlantic, “Cash me outside, how ’bout dat.” A year later, she became the youngest female rapper ever to appear on Billboard’s Hot 100 with her debut single “These Heaux.” She arrives in continued support of last year’s mixtape,”15,” which is so much better than it has a right to be,
Details: 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 19.
4/20: Deadbeats 420
This EDM festival is topped by Zeds Dead with Troyboi, Liquid Stranger, 1788-L and Blanke. The festival’s name refers in part to the Canadian headliners’ label and in part to the date of the festival, which is widely considered an occasion for celebrating the smoking of weed.
Details: 6 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Rawhide, 5700 W. North Loop Road, Gila River Reservation. $45-$85. 480-502-5600, relentlessbeats.com.
The bill at this year’s KUPD festival is headlined by Limp Bizkit with Killswitch Engage, Parkway Drive, DED and more acts to be announced.
Led by Fred Durst, Limp Bizkit were among the more successful acts of the rap-rocking nu-metal movement after breaking through with “Nookie” and topping the charts at alternative-radio with “Re-Arranged.” Both singles appeared on a seven-times-platinum 1999 chart-topper titled “Significant Other.”
Details: 2 p.m. Saturday, April 20. Mesa Riverview Park, 2100 W. Rio Salado Parkway. $39-$175. ticketmaster.com.
4/21: Sonu Nigam and Neha Kakaar
Nigam is a Bollywood playback singer who also does Hindi devotional music. Kakaar is an Indian singer who competed on the second season of “Indian Idol” in 2006 and returned as a judge in the show’s 10th season. They’ve joined forces on the Klose to My Life Tour.
Details: 5:30 p.m. Sunday, April 21. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. Sold out. 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
4/21: Falling in Reverse
Ronnie Radke had plenty of time to sort through the emotions expressed with conviction and rage on “The Drug in Me Is You,” his first release with Falling in Reverse, serving two years in prison while his former bandmates in Escape the Fate moved on without him. Eight years later, Falling in Reverse return to Phoenix in support of “Coming Home,” an album packed with pop-punk anthems cathartic enough for Alternative Pres to declare it Falling in Reverse’s ”most real, honest and self-aware record” yet.
Details: 7 p.m. Sunday, April 21. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $30; $27.50 in advance. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
This Scottish trio made the rounds of year-end critics’ lists in 2015 with “Every Open Eye.” At NME, where it was rated No. 6, they ended their mini-review of the album with “Chvrches were born on the internet, but they’re bound for arenas.”
In the meantime, they play the Van Buren in support of last year’s “Love Is Dead,” which NME says “manages to balance hopeful, utopian pop with a darker, gloomier undercurrent.”
Details: 8 p.m. Monday, April 22. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $38.50-$43. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
A quirky London-based collective with an 18-year-old Japanese girl out front underscored every candy-coated hook, they arrive in support of a self-titled album Rolling Stone proclaimed as “the most warped, exciting indie-pop of recent years.” Fans include Frank Ocean and Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig. And their label promises “a live show that’s as psychedelically technicolor as their irresistibly danceable, uniquely collaged brand of indie pop.”
Details: 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 24. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $18; $15 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
4/26: Storm Large
She may be best known as a semi-finalist on “Rock Star: Supernova,” a TV reality show whose premise was that the winner would sing lead for a newly formed supergroup with Tommy Lee of Motley Crue and Gilbey Clarke of Guns N’ Roses.
The venue website promises “beautiful, familiar, yet twisted… much like the lady herself” interpretations of material ranging from French cabaret to jazz standards and metal.”
Details: 7 and 9:30 p.m. Friday, April 26. Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave. $46-$56. 480-782-2680, chandlercenter.org.
4/26: Com Truise
Com Truise is Seth Haley, a synthwave sensation whose stage name is rather obviously a reference to Tom Cruise, the actor, who should seriously do a music video dancing to one of the songs on Truise’s latest record, “Iteration,” a la “Tropic Thunder.”
The Skinny responded to his latest effort with “Nostalgic, dramatic and not exactly short on synth, Iteration is the kind of album necessary to help us battle through the rest of 2017.” Two years later? It still sounds pretty necessary as a soundtrack to life in 2019.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, April 26. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $22; $20 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
4/27: Wet Electric
It’s the 10th anniversary of America’s largest pool party at Big Surf Waterpark.
Even the people at Relentless Beats consider this the most fun festival they do, with artists and DJs performing on a massive floating stage in the middle of a 2.5-million-gallon wave pool, with waterslides, luxury cabanas, bars and more.
Headliners include RL Grime, Benny Benassi, What So Not and Tails.
Details: noon Saturday, April 27. Big Surf, 1500 N. McClintock Drive, Tempe. $49; VIP passes and packages start at $99. Lockers are available for rent at $14 plus fees. relentlessbeats.com.
4/27: Goodyear Lakeside Music Fest
Smash Mouth, the ’90s hitmakers, will headline the Sixth Annual Goodyear Lakeside Music Fest, a free family-friendly event presented by the West Valley Arts Council in conjunction with the city of Goodyear.
Walt Richardson and Friends will kick things off with a set of reggae, followed by Rebel Heart (country), New Chums (pop-punk) and Mike Eldred Trio (blues). Then, Smash Mouth take the stage for a set that’s sure to feature such smashes as “All Star,” “Then the Morning Comes” and their cover of “I’m a Believer” by the Monkees.
Details: 4 p.m. Saturday, April 27. Estrella Lakeside Amphitheater, 10300 S. Estrella Parkway Goodyear. Free. 623-386-1000, westvalleyarts.org.
The UK metalcore are touring the States in support of “Holy Hell,” their first since founding member Tom Searle died of cancer and you can hear the catharsis as they pour their grief into the songs.
Kerrang! responded with a perfect score, declaring it “an album that’s by turns gut-wrenching, hauntingly desolate and emotionally devastating.”
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, April 27. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $30; $27 in advance. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
4/27: Sage Francis and B. Dolan
The alternative hip-hop sensations have joined forces on the Epic Beard Men Tour in support of a full-length debut titled “This Was Supposed to Be Fun,” an old-school hip-hop celebration that captures the sound, as they say in a press release, of “two rap greybeards who aren’t afraid to swing freely from dead-serious to wryly hilarious” in the course of “a dark buddy comedy gone spectacularly sideways.”
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, April 27. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $24; $20 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
4/28: Band Splash
This promises to be both as electric and as wet as the previous day’s Wet Electric. But this time, they’re training the spotlight on rockers, not DJs. Hence the Band before the Splash.
Sum 41, the Canadian pop-punk sensations whose hits include “Fat Lip,” “Still Waiting,” “The Hell Song” and “We’re All to Blame,” will top a bill that also features SWMRS, The Wrecks, Super Whatevr, Twin XL and Chapel.
Details: 12 p.m. Sunday, April 28. Big Surf, 1500 N. McClintock Drive, Tempe. $19-$125. 877-987-6487, ticketfly.com.
4/28: I Prevail
It may seem a bit odd on the surface that one of the fastest-rising names in modern metalcore first tasted fame was a cover of Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space.” But given the pop sensibilities they flex on the chorus of tracks like “Scars” and the aptly named “Stuck in Your Head,” the first two singles from their full-length debut “Lifelines?” I’d imagine you would find all sorts of music playing in their van that doesn’t sound a thing like Converge or the Dillinger Escape Plan.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Sunday, April 28. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $36; $33 in advance. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
4/30: Passion Pit
This is the opening night of a tour celebrating the 10th anniversary of “Manners,” their acclaimed debut. Frontman Michael Angelakos issued a statement saying the album “seems to finally feel like the moment that it was: a tectonic shift during the strangest, most defining year of my life.”
Paste wrote, “It’s easy to say that Passion Pit makes dance music for people who hate dance music, but these guys also make dance music for people who like dance music, so here’s the new paradigm: They make dance music for people who like music.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 30. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $35-$67.50. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
4/30: La Dispute
These post-hardcore veterans are touring in support of “Panorama,” a fourth album couches Jordan Dreyer’s tortured vocals in mix that offsets atmospheric textures with the moments of intensity you knew were coming.
Sputnik Music raved, “On ‘Panorama,’ they show themselves to be one of the tightest units in music” while The Skinny called them “titans of the scene” but also “lyricists of the highest calibre.”
Details: 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 30. Nile Theater, 105 W. Main St., Mesa. $25; $22.50 in advance. www.niletheater.com.
The thrash-metal legends are kicking off the fifth leg of their farewell tour in Phoenix with support by Lamb of God, Amon Amarth and Cannibal Corpse.
They took the metal world by force in 1983 with “Show No Mercy,” on which they prophetically set the tone with “Evil Has No Boundaries.” And by the time they got to “Reign in Blood” and “Hell Awaits,” the ’80s triumphs that would go on to define their brutal legacy, they’d somehow found a way to take it up a notch.
Details: 6 p.m. Thursday, May 2. Ak-Chin Pavilion, 2121 N. 83rd Ave., Phoenix. $29.50 and up. 602-254-7200, livenation.com.
5/2: Gary Allan
He’s topped the country charts with four singles since hitting his stride in the early 2000s — “Man to Man,” “Tough Little Boys,” “Nothing On But the Radio” and the platinum “Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain),” which hit the top in 2013.
He hasn’t had much luck with hits since then, despite releasing songs with names that should sound right at home at country radio (“It Ain’t the Whiskey,” “Hangover Tonight”).
Details: 7 p.m. Thursday, May 2. Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 N. Center St. $43. 480-644-2560, mesaamp.com.
5/2: Tech N9ne
This underground rapper has sold more than two million albums with precious little airplay, relying instead on the grassroots following he’s nurtured on the road. And making brilliant records hasn’t hurt.
As he told azcentral.com, “Really good artistry always shines.” His most successful songs to date are ”Fragile,” a 2013 track featuring Kendrick Lamar and Mayday, and 2015’s “Hood Go Crazy” with B.o.B and 2 Chainz.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 2. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $40-$70. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
5/2: Jake Shimabukuro
If that last time you heard a ukulele was your fourth-grader’s music class recital, then you’ve missed a revolution. Hawaiian virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro has gained global fame for his fiendishly difficult compositions. He even has a spot in the Musical Instrument Museum’s Artist Gallery, alongside the likes of Johnny Cash, Carlos Santana and Tito Puente.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 2. Mesa Arts Center, 1 E. Main St. $39. 480-644-6500, mesaartscenter.com.
5/3: NCT 127
NCT is a South Korean boy-band franchise formed by SM Entertainment. Their name is short for Neo Culture Technology, a term coined to describe the concept of having an unlimited number of membersdivided into multiple sub-units based in various cities.
NCT 127 is the second unit, based in Seoul. The number represents the longitude coordiante of Seoul. How K-pop is that?
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, May 3. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. $72.50 and up. 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
5/4: Juice Wrld
This 20-year-old rapper topped the charts in early March with a second album called “Death Race For Love.” It hadn’t been a full year since “Goodbye & Good Riddance,” an emo-rap debut that Pitchfork called “an adolescent breakup record” that’s “accordingly cathartic, petty, and clumsy in its emotional processing.” And he managed to squeeze in a mixtape with Future between those two releases. He’s still best known in the mainstream for his breakthrough single “Lucid Dreams,” a quadruple-platinum smash.
Details: 7 p.m. Saturday, May 4. Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 N. Center St. $49.95. 480-644-2560, mesaamp.com.
5/5: August Alsina
This New Orleans-based R&B singer is best know for “I Luv This S—t,” a breakthrough hit that peaked at No. 4 on Billboard‘s R&B chart.
The New York Times responded to the singer’s debut, “Testimony,” with, “Most of this album moves with slowness and throbbing deliberation that focuses the ear and adds urgency to Mr. Alsina’s confessions. It’s also poignant for its intimacy.”
Details: 8 p.m. Monday, May 5. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $35-$65. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
5/7: Violent Femmes and X
Folk-punk standard-bearers Violent Femmes are on a co-headlining tour with X, the pride of old-school L.A. punk. Femmes took college radio by storm with 1983’s career-defining self-titled debut, which featured any number of their most neurotic calling cards, from “Blister in the Sun” to “Add It Up.” And California punk never got any better than X, whose first album, “Los Angeles,” found bassist John Doe and Exene Cervenka bleeding passion all over Billy Zoom’s best punkabilly licks.
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 7. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $46. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
5/8: The Eels
Speaking on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall, Mark Everett said, “We did a shorter tour than usual this past summer, and they were the most fun, exciting shows ever. We need to bring the love and positive energy to some of the places we didn’t get to last time. We know you’re hurting. Help is on the way.” It helps that their latest release, “The Deconstruction,” is another enigmatic journey through the mind of a man whose voice is as expressive as it is distinctive. The man remains an underrated treasure for the ages.
Details: 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 8. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $38-$55. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
5/9: Carrie Underwood
The seven-time Grammy winner is bringing the Cry Pretty Tour 360 to Phoenix with Maddie & Tae and Runaway June. She’ll be performing in the middle of the venue, creating a 360-degree setting to allow fans on all sides of the stage an intimate view of the concert. “I love performing in the round,” she said in a statement. “It creates a much more intimate and immersive experience for the audience, even in a larger arena setting.”
Details: 7 p.m. Thursday, May 9. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. $61.25 and up. 602-379-7800, ticketmaster.com.
5/10-12: FORM Arcosanti
Headliners include Florence + The Machine, Skrillex, Pussy Riot, Tim Hecker, Anderson .Paak, Kaytranada, Japanese Breakfast, DJ Koze, and American Football.
Other performers include JPEGMAFIA, Bonobo, Julia Byrne, Channel Tres, Snail Mail, Ìfé, Vagabon, Khruangbin, Kelsey Lu, Kilo Kish, Serpentwithfeet, L’Rain, Miya Folick, Lafawndah, Mary Lattimore, Lonnie Holley, Sasami, Melanie Faye, Miya Folick, Mormor, Mulatu Astatke, Nicola Cruz, Peggy Gou, Tasha, Tirza, Trayer (of Hundred Waters), and a solo performance by Destroyer.
Aja Monet, Yrsa Daley-Ward and Watsky will read poetry.
The festival will also feature Sigur Rós’ “mixed-reality project,” and a conversation between Florence Welch and Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova.
Details: Friday-Sunday, May 10-12. Arcosanti, about 65 miles north of Phoenix near Cordes Junction. $379. experienceform.com.
5/11: The Bash
There’s a new punk festival hitting the road a year after the final Vans Warped Tour and the opening date is in Phoenix. Rancid, the ’90s punk veterans, have teamed with Synergy Global Entertainment Inc. and Brew Ha Ha Productions to present the Bash, a punk and craft beer festival launching at Margaret T. Hance Park.
The festival will run for seven dates in May and June, with a lineup topped and curated by Rancid. The bill in Phoenix also features Suicidal Tendencies, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, L7 and H2O. Pennywise will join the tour after the opening date in Phoenix.
Details: Noon Saturday, May 11. Margaret T. Hance Park, Second and Portland streets, Phoenix. $39.50. 800-745-3000, thebashphoenix.frontgatetickets.com.
5/12: Lord Huron
What would it sound like if Bruce Springsteen had called Lindsey Buckingham in to produce him on a rockabilly-flavored film-noir soundtrack after listening to Arcade Fire and his own “Nebraska” on a late-night drive across the desert? It would sound a bit like “Strange Trails.” And last year’s “Vide Noir” was just as cinematic while also expanding the scope of their sound with the help of producer Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips).
Details: 8 p.m. Sunday, May 12. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $35; $32 in advance. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
5/14: Ariana Grande
The Sweetener tour takes its name from the singer’s fourth studio album, which topped the Billboard album chart last August, spinning off the platinum single “No Tears Left to Cry.” And she already has another album out, returning to the top with “Thank U, Next,” whose title track and “7 Rings” both topped the Hot 100.
Rolling Stone found the opening night of the tour to be is “full of emotional drama, iconic looks, and undeniable hits.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 14. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. Resale prices vary. 602-379-7800, ticketmaster.com.
The lead single from Santigold’s third album, “99¢,” brought the girl-group sound back to the future like some space-age Shangri-Las with echoes of the Tom Tom Club and, bizarrely, David Bowie. It’s no wonder she can’t get enough of herself. And the rest of the album lived up to the promise of that early taste. Her biggest U.S. hits are 2008’s “L.E.S. Artistes” and 2012’s “Disparate Youth,” but her albums are packed with songs that should have put her in a bigger room than this by now.
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 14. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $36. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
5/17: Hollywood Vampires
Alice Cooper, Johnny Depp and Aerosmith’s Joe Perry are playing their first full concert in the Valley as Hollywood Vampires, who have a second album due this summer.
They’ve already been here twice as part of Alice Cooper’s Christmas Pudding (although Perry had to miss that second Pudding after being diagnosed with pulmonary issues). This time we get the full experience. And if it’s half as satisfying as the incomplete experience, then it should be a great time (if you’re into rock and roll).
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, May 17. The Pool at Talking Stick Resort, Loop 101 and Pima Road, Salt River Reservation. $35 and up. 480-850-7734, talkingstickresort.com.
5/18: Tedeschi Trucks Band
Susan Tedeschi had already earned five Grammy nominations by the time she and her husband, slide guitarist Derek Trucks, joined forces, bringing home a best-blues-album Grammy for their first joint effort, “Revelator.”
That one felt a bit like Derek and the Dominoes as fronted by a woman, blending blues and soul with occasional hints of a ’70s soft-rock vibe. Eight years later, the 12-member blues-rock collective is heading to town in support of a fourth album, “Signs.”
Details: 6:30 p.m. Saturday, May 18. Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 N. Center St. $28-$128. 480-644-2560, mesaamp.com.
5/20-21: Willie Nelson
The man is a piece of American history, fresh from picking up his 13th Grammy – Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for “My Way,” his latest collection of standards, recorded in tribute to his old friend Frank Sinatra.
Of course, he’ll probably play some subtle variation of the set he always plays, but it’s a good one, from “Crazy” and “Funny How Time Slips Away” to ”Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” and ”On the Road Again.”
Details: 7:30 p.m. Monday, May 20 and Tuesday, May 21. Celebrity Theatre, 440 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. $40-$95. 602-267-1600, celebritytheatre.com.
5/22: New Kids on the Block
The MixTape Tour finds New Kids On The Block joined by fellow old-school pop sensations Salt-N-Pepa, Tiffany, Debbie Gibson and Naughty by Nature, promising such hits as “Hangin’ Tough,” “I’ll Be Loving You (Forever)” and “Step By Step”.
To celebrate the tour announcement, New Kids dropped a throwback track called “80s Baby” featuring their touring partners.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 22. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. $25.20 and up. 602-379-7800, ticketmaster.com.
Led by singer Jamey Jasta, these metalcore veterans hit the Hard Rock album charts at No. 2 with “The Concrete Confessional,” their seventh album.
A reviewer at Metal Injection awarded the album an 8 out of 10 while noting that although it’s “no reinvention by any means, there is enough variety of material and reinvigoration in the band’s energy to establish it as one of the best Hatebreed albums of the past decade.”
Details: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 22. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $25-$45. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
5/23: Wisin y Yandel
The Latin-music duo are launching their first U.S. tour in five years with a show at Comerica Theatre in support of their first album in more than five years, “Los Campeones del Pueblo/ The Big Leagues.” It’s the duo’s 10th studio album and the first they’ve recorded together since the award-winning album “Líderes” in 2012.
In addition to their own recording, they’re known for having collaborated with such heavy hitters as Franco de Vita, Daddy Yankee and Don Omar.
Details: 8 p.m. Thursday, May 23. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. $49.95 and up. 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
5/24: ’90s Memorial Weekend Jam
Dru Hill topped the R&B charts three times in their ’90s prime (“In My Bed,””Never Make a Promise” and Redman-assisted “How Deep Is Your Love”) while serving as a launching pad for Sisqo, the white-haired R&B sensation best remembered for giving the world “Thong Song.”
They’re joined my Sunshine Anderson, J. Holiday and Carl Thomas.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, May 24. Celebrity Theatre, 440 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. $25-$55. 602-267-1600, celebritytheatre.com.
5/25: The Millennium Tour
R&B sensations B2K (Omarion, Boog, Fizz and Raz-B) will bring the Millennium Tour to Gila River Arena on May 25 with special guests Mario, Pretty Ricky, Lloyd, Ying Yang Twins, Chingy and Bobby V.
In their original run, from 1998-2004, B2K had a string of hit singles, including the chart-topping “Bump, Bump, Bump” as well as “Girlfriend,” “Gots ta Be” and “Uh Huh.” They won back-to-back BET Viewer’s Choice Awards and Soul Train Awards in their prime.
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, May 25. Gila River Arena, 9400 W. Maryland Ave., Glendale. $49.50 and up. 623-772-3800, ticketmaster.com.
5/26: Lemonheads, Tommy Stinson
Evan Dando’s Lemonheads broke through in 1992 with “It’s a Shame About Ray,” fueled largely by the title track, a wistful, acoustic-driven rocker that became a Top 5 modern-rock hit and landed a spot on Pitchfork’s Top 200 Tracks of the ’90s list. Stinson found fame on the fringes as the teenage derelict on bass for the Replacements. His latest solo work should speak directly to the part of you that fell in love with “Hootenanny” or whatever album proved to be your gateway drug back in the day.
Details: 7 p.m. Sunday, May 26. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $30-$60. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
5/31: Brad Paisley
One of country’s most consistent hit machines, Paisley scored his first of 18 chart-topping country hits, “He Didn’t Have to Be,” in 1999 and sent a record-breaking streak of 10 consecutive releases to the top from 2005 (“When I Get Where I’m Going,” a duet with Dolly Parton) to 2009 (“Then”).
His biggest hits include four double-platinum singles — “Whiskey Lullaby,” “She’s Everything,” “Then” and “Remind Me,” a duet with Carrie Underwood.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 31. Ak-Chin Pavilion, 2121 N. 83rd Ave., Phoenix. $38.50 and up. 602-254-7200, livenation.com.
6/1: Luis Miguel
Among the most successful acts in Latin-music history, Luis Miguel will launch his U.S. tour in Phoenix.
The Puerto Rican-born Mexican vocalist recently picked up his sixth Latin Grammy and the Latin American Music Award for Best Tour of 2018.
Details: 8:30 p.m. Saturday, June 1. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. $35.20 and up. 602-379-7800, ticketmaster.com.
6/1: Justin Moore
This Arkansas native topped the country charts in 2009 with “Small Town USA,” a wistful ballad on which he sets the scene with, “A lot of people called it prison when I was growin’ up/ But these are my roots and this is what I love.”
He returned to the top in 2011 with “If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away,” which won two awards at the Inspirational Country Music Awards. He arrives in support of a forthcoming fifth album, “Late Nights and Longnecks.”
Details: 7 p.m. Saturday, June 1. Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 N. Center St. $45. 480-644-2560, mesaamp.com.
When Foreigner’s 40th anniversary tour played Phoenix in 2017, Mick Jones said in a press release, “I never could have imagined when I set out to create Foreigner 40 years ago, that we’d still be touring around the world and performing the music we love all these years later.” It helps to have a catalog whose highlights are as likely to inspire trips down memory lane as “Feels Like the First Time,” ”Cold as Ice,” “Hot Blooded,” “Double Vision,” “Urgent,” “Waiting For a Girl Like You” and “I Want to Know What Love Is.”
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, June 7. The Pool at Talking Stick Resort, Loop 101 and Pima Road, Salt River Reservation. $25 and up. 480-850-7734, talkingstickresort.com.
Signed to J. Cole’s Dreamville imprint, this Atlanta rapper is part of the Spillage Village collective. He’s headed to town on the Catch Me If You Can Tour in support of “DiCaprio 2,” a sophomore album that more than lived up to the promise of “The Never Story.”
As HipHopDX said, “The 14-track album keeps all the commended technical framework of ‘The Never Story’ but elevates the delivery and songwriting to a point where he sounds completely like his own man with his own plan.”
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, June 7. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $27.50-$45. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
6/8: Hillsong United
The Australian-based worship collective will bring their first U.S. tour in nearly three years to Comerica Theatre. Comprised of an evolving and eclectic mix of musicians and songwriters, Hillsong United have sold more than 4.7 million albums globally and garnered more than 3 billion worldwide career streams to date.
Their latest album, “Wonder,” topped the Billboard Christian chart while setting a record for the most streamed album in a single week in Christian music history.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 8. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. Resale prices . 800-745-3000, livenation.com.
6/11: Aly & AJ
The Michalka sisters are touring again in continued support of “Ten Years,” an EP that finds them exploring the complexities of growing up in public. Aly found fame as an actress after being cast as Keely on “Phil of the Future,” a Disney Channel series that ran from 2004-2006. A year after the series premiered, she and her sister released a million-selling debut called “Into the Rush” and scored their biggest hit in 2007 with “Potential Breakup Song.”
Details: 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 11. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $25-$250 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
6/12: Train and Goo Goo Dolls
This tour was announced the same day Train released “Train’s Greatest Hits,” which pulls together hits as big as “Drops of Jupiter,” “Calling All Angels” and “Hey Soul Sister,” as well as a cover of George Michael’s “Careless Whisper,” with sax by Kenny G.
Goo Goo Dolls launched a 2018 tour celebrating the 20th anniversary of “Dizzy Up the Girl,” the quadruple-platinum triumph that sent “Slide” and “Iris” to the top at alternative radio and Adult Top 40, at a sold-out Van Buren.
Details: 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 12. Ak-Chin Pavilion, 2121 N. 83rd Ave., Phoenix. $29.50 and up. 602-254-7200, livenation.com.
6/18: Static-X and Devildriver
Industrial-metal veterans Static-X went platinum with their first release, “Wisconsin Death Trip,” which memorably sampled a scene from “Planet of the Apes” and spawned their highest-charting entry on the mainstream-rock charts, “Push It.”
They’re joined by OZZFest veterans Devildriver, whose latest album, “Outlaws ‘Til the End,” features punishing reinventions of old country songs by Willie Nelson, Johnny Paycheck, Johnny Cash, George Jones and more.
Details: 6:25 p.m. Tuesday, June 18. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $25-$60. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
6/19: Hootie & the Blowfish
Formed by Mark Bryan, Dean Felber, Darius Rucker and Jim “Soni” Sonefeld as college students in South Carolina, Hootie & the Blowfish blew up big with “Cracked Rear View,” a 1994 debut that remains one of the 20 biggest-selling U.S. albums of all time.
They’re joined on their first tour in more than a decade by Barenaked Ladies with a new album expected this summer.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 19. Ak-Chin Pavilion, 2121 N. 83rd Ave., Phoenix. $29.50 and up. 602-254-7200, livenation.com.
6/19: John Hiatt
This show is being billed as An Acoustic Evening With John Hiatt, and the best of Hiatt’s music would sound just as good on acoustic guitar as it would in a full-band arrangement. It helps that the weathering of Hiatt’s voice with age has only added to the charm of his conversational delivery, as captured to brilliant effect on “The Eclipse Sessions,” his latest release.
Details: 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 19. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $73. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
3/29: Michael Buble
The Canadian crooner hit the mainstream with “It’s Time,” a triple-platinum smash that topped the Billboard year-end jazz charts for 2005 and 2006 while spinning off his breakthrough single, “Home.” He’s also quite the showman. As the Sydney Morning Herald says, “This is a man who holds the audience in the palm of his hand. His soaring vocals absolutely knock it out of the park.”
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, March 29. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. Resale prices vary. 602-379-7800, ticketmaster.com.
3/29: A Boogie Wit da Hoodie
This 23-year-old Bronx rapper spent two weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s album chart in January with a second album titled “Hoodie SZN.” And you pronounce that title “Hoodie Season,” which this would appear to be.He may be best known at the moment for the triple-platinum Kodak Black-assisted “Drowning” from his previous release, “The Bigger Artist,” but his current hit, “Look Back At It,” is well along the way to changing that. He’s joined by Don Q and Trap Manny.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, March 29. The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix. $65-$99. 866-468-3399, thevanburenphx.com.
Pink launched the Beautiful Trauma Tour in this same venue in March of 2018.
“The whole thing was brilliantly staged, with bright colors, interpretive dancing and plenty of high-flying spectacle,” we wrote. “If for some reason, you believe you’ve seen another artist put more time and effort into doing acrobatics high above the crowd, you may just be thinking of Cirque du Soleil.”
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, March 30. Gila River Arena, 9400 W. Maryland Ave., Glendale. Resale prices vary. 623-772-3800, ticketmaster.com.
These Grammy-winning East LA Chicana rockers are marking their 25th anniversary as they bring their blend of Mexican ranchera, cumbia, salsa, rock, R&B, folk, international music and a political vision based in social activism and feminism to Tempe.
The Los Angeles Times called them “one of Los Angeles’ most important bands” and they picked up a Latin alternative Grammy for 2013 “Imaginaries.”
Details: 7 p.m. Saturday, March 30. ASU Gammage, Mill Avenue and Apache Boulevard, Tempe. $52.65. 480-965-3434, asugammage.com.
The alternative-R&B duo from Brooklyn spent a good part of last fall in Europe opening shows for Florence + the Machine in support of a soulful second album titled “Still Run.”
This one leans more heavily on ballads than “Don’t You,” which had Fader raving “Wet has what it takes to make everyone care about an indie band.” But the more reflective tone here plays to Zutrau’s growing strengths on vocals.
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, March 30. Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Ave., Tempe. $30-$60. 480-829-0607, luckymanonline.com.
Singer-guitarist Dean Wareham assembled the earliest version of Luna after breaking up with Galaxie 500. The current touring lineup is the 1999–2005 edition that recorded “Luna Live,” “Romantica,” “Close Cover Before Striking” and “Rendezvous”: Wareham and Sean Eden on guitar, Lee Wall on drums, and Britta Phillips on bass.Their latest album is “A Sentimental Education,” which finds them covering classics by the Cure, Bob Dylan, Fleetwood Mac, Mercury Rev, the Rolling Stones and more.
Details: 7:30 p.m. Sunday, March 31. Musical Instrument Museum, 4725 E. Mayo Blvd., Phoenix. $43.50-$48.50. 480-478-6000, mim.org.
4/1: Black Moth Super Rainbow
Last year’s “Panic Blooms” was a headphone-melting masterpiece of hazy, psychedelic pop as avant-garde as anything they’ve managed. In a press release announcing their first album in six years, they asked “What if Goya or Bosch made ravaged vocoder pop? Or a neo-impressionist painter committed himself to creating slow woozy earworms so iridian and vivid you’d think he sliced off an ear in the process?” And then they answered it in the course of an album whose best moments are as pretty as they are unsettling.
Details: 8 p.m. Monday, April 1. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $20; $17 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
Reach the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-4495. Follow him on Twitter @EdMasley.
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