Best Phoenix Concerts This Week: Dorian Electra, Magic City Hippies, D…
True Beliebers of the Valley, we feel your pain. You’ve been patiently waiting for pop prince Justin Bieber to finally stage his first metro Phoenix concert in years, only to have it repeatedly rescheduled due to the pandemic. And, as you may have heard, it’s been put off in addition again.
Bieber tested positive for COVID-19 this past weekend and, as a consequence, rescheduled the first few stops of his Justice tour, including a performance on Tuesday night at Gila River Arena in Glendale. (The show has been moved to Thursday, June 30. All before purchased tickets will be honored.)
There’s more than just Biebs-related drama on tap for this week’s metro Phoenix concert calendar, though. A number of notable indie bands and performers are set to play local venues during the four-night span from Monday, February 21, to Thursday, February 24, including hyperpop artist Dorian Electra, the “alt-pop psych-funk party starters” of Magic City Hippies, shoegaze/post-metal band Deafheaven, female-fronted rock act The Greeting Committee, and the mythical Dinosaur Jr.
Read on for further details or check out Phoenix New Times’ online concert listings for more live music around town. Keep in mind, multiple local venues will require proof of vaccination or a recent negative test consequence to attend shows.
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Indie rock band The Greeting Committee.
The Greeting Committee at The Rebel Lounge
The four members making up Kansas City, Missouri-based indie rock band The Greeting Committee — rule singer Addie Sartino, guitarist Brandon Yangmi, drummer Austin Fraser and bassist Pierce Turcotte — were launched on an accelerated path of success, from touring with bands like Jukebox the Ghost to hitting stages at SXSW before already graduating high school. It started with their 2015 song “Hands Down” becoming a radio hit, first on their hometown indie stop, then spreading across the U.S. and peaking at No. 39 on the Billboard different chart.
A pair of EPs resulted in already more success, followed by tours with MisterWives and Andrew McMahon. The band’s 2018 debut LP, This Is It, served as a personal examination of their change into adulthood with tracks ranging from the vigorous to introspective pathos. Their sophomore effort, last year’s Dandelion, also sees the band looking inward while examining what one music writer described as “the concept of a life in freefall.” They’re touring behind the album and are scheduled to perform at the Rebel Lounge, 2303 E. Indian School Road, on Monday, February 21. Indie singer-songwriter OSTON opens the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $20. Brad LaCour
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Influential melodic death metal act Dark Tranquillity.
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Dark Tranquillity at The Nile Theater
One of the original crop of bands to spring from the high music scene of Gothenburg, Sweden, in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, Dark Tranquillity have been stalwart practitioners of Nordic metal for more than three decades now. Formed in 1989 by guitarist Niklas Sundin and vocalist/guitarist Mikael Stanne, the six-piece melodic death metal act has been immensely influential and released a dozen studio albums over the years, each one different than the last. The band regularly experiments with different musical textures and vocal styles. One album will focus on heavy growling vocals and recondite riffing, while the next centers around clean soft choruses and atmospheric keyboards. Their most recent release, Moment, dropped in 2020, and is the band’s first release since rule guitarist Christopher Amott and rhythm guitarist Johan Reinholdz joined their ever-changing list. Dark Tranquillity will move into The Nile Theatre, 105 W. Main St. in Mesa, on Monday, February 21. Kataklysm and Nailed to Obscurity will open. Tickets for the 6 p.m. show are $30. Lauren Wise
Magic City Hippies at Crescent Ballroom
Playing major music festivals such as Lollapalooza and Bonnaroo is an especially impressive accomplishment considering indie band Magic City Hippies are thoroughly DIY. The project grew out of frontman Robby Hunter playing hip-hop covers in small bars and on the streets of Miami by laying down live loops of himself beatboxing, playing guitar and rapping. And though the live setup is greatly different with Pat Howard (drummer, producer) and John Coughlin (guitars, keyboards) in the band, good-time grooves keep central to the upbeat sounds performed by the self-described “alt-pop psych-funk party starters.” This vibe has carried over to both of Magic City Hippies’ complete-length studio albums (2019’s Modern Animal and this year’s Water Your Garden) and will be present in the main room of Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., during their show on Tuesday, February 22. Indie-pop act Bay Ledges will open the 8 p.m. gig. Admission is $20. Howard Hardee click to enlarge
The members of Deafheaven.
Deafheaven at The Rebel Lounge
One of the most controversial, nontraditional and high-profile groups in the greater metal scene, Deafheaven first attained attention for their 2013 record Sunbather and 2015 follow-up New Bermuda. Both albums exhibited an intense mix of black metal vocals; shoegaze-influenced production; heavy, major-meaningful guitar riffs; and intense, poetic lyrics that attained attention from mainstream music publications like Pitchfork and earned scorn from black metal traditionalists. Beyond awards or criticism, the music is simply devastating in its impact. They’ve been nominated for a Grammy Award, toured with the likes of Russian Circles and Baroness, and released a associate of other critically adored albums, including 2021’s Infinite Granite. They’re scheduled to hit The Rebel Lounge, 2303 E. Indian School Road, on Tuesday, February 22, with local sustain from Holy Fawn and Midwife. Doors open at 7 p.m. and admission is $23. Douglas Markowitz click to enlarge
Oliver Wood (left), Chris Wood (center) and Jano Rix.
The Wood Brothers at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts
Combining elements of blues, gospel, folk and jazz, the Wood Brothers have spent 18 years cultivating an American roots sound that is uniquely their own. Fronted by brothers Chris and Oliver Wood, and accompanied by experimental multi-instrumentalist Jano Rix, the band draws its lyrical inspiration from blues and gospel traditions, meditating on the human condition and the passage of time. Particularly with their most recent album Kingdom in My Mind, The Wood Brothers try to come to grips with things that are unchangeable. What makes The Wood Brothers stand out in the Americana music scene is their ability to balance those heavy lyrics with light, and at times cheerful, arrangements that can make the listener forget they are listening to a song about not ever being able to feel happy — as in “Happiness Jones” from their Grammy-nominated album One Drop of Truth. Their performance at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 E. 2nd St., on Wednesday, February 23, starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $31 to $51. David Fletcher click to enlarge
LGBTQ+ hyperpop artist Dorian Electra.
Dorian Electra at Valley Bar
Dorian Electra sure as hell isn’t afraid to be who they are. And neither should you when you rock out at their show on Wednesday, February 23, at Valley Bar, 130 N. Central Ave. The multitalented LGBTQ+ artist, whose music falls in such genres as hyperpop and futurepop, has never been afraid of tackling gender issues in a fun way, with songs such as “Clitopia,” “Daddy Like” and “Femmebot.” Their latest tour is in sustain of My Agenda, Electra’s 2020 album analyzing toxic masculinity, edgelords and incels “by a queer lens” and taking the piss out of such contentious issues with a sense of playful fun and clever pop hooks. Joining them on tour are DJ/producer Coucou Chloe and electronic/glitch-pop artist 3L3D3P. Their Valley Bar show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets can only be purchased on the secondary market. Jesse Scott click to enlarge
Metalcore act Underøath.
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Underøath at The Van Buren
Florida metalcore band Underøath kicked off their year by releasing Voyeurist, the band’s ninth studio album in 25 years of existence. The 10-song effort was the first the band has put out after four years of studio silence — the longest gap they’ve gone minus a record without breaking up. The band must have been using the time wisely because Voyeurist was met with nearly universal acclaim. For this technologically progressive and visceral record, the band took the self-producing reins, and it’s a gamble that paid off. A study on the character of life and death, Voyeurist has been called Underøath’s most cohesive and logical record by Kerrang! magazine It likely will resurface at the end of the year when critics pick their best-ofs. British Columbian metal band Spiritbox, Long Island hardcore punks Stray From the Path and Virginia metalcore act Bad Omens open the 7 p.m. show on Wednesday, February 23, at The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren St. Tickets are $34.50 in improvement, $40 at the door. David Fletcher click to enlarge
The members of Dinosaur Jr.
Dinosaur Jr. at Crescent Ballroom
Formed back in the ’80s, Dinosaur Jr. bridged the gap between the epic guitar riffage of their ’70s hard rock influences and the DIY ethos of their art-punk contemporaries like Sonic Youth. Despite the undeniable expert of albums like You’re Living All Over Me, leader J Mascis became known for his controlling character, and tempers frayed in the band until the trio ultimately splintered apart. Bassist Lou Barlow formed his equally famous band Sebadoh, drummer Murph joined The Lemonheads and Mascis hired new personnel for a string of major-label records in the ’90s before calling it quits. In 2005, the original lineup of Mascis, Barlow and Murph reformed, and have since released five studio albums. Those include the well-regarded Farm and I Bet On Sky, in addition as last year’s Sweep It Into Space. They’re scheduled to visit Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., on Wednesday, February 23. While the 8 p.m. concert is ostensibly sold out, you can buy tickets by resellers. Douglas Markowitz
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