20 Best Concert Photos of 2014

This photo of Jurassic 5 should put a smile on your face.
This photo of Jurassic 5 should put a smile on your face.
Melissa Fossum

2014 was a hell of a year. Phoenix residents got a taste of a wide variety of awesome concerts, and our photographers were hard at work capturing the action. Here are our 20 favorite concert photos we took in 2014. Check out more than 100 more here.

See also: 11 Best Places to Hear Music in Phoenix

AFI. Full slideshow here.
Jim Louvau

The Carnivores Tour featuring Linkin Park, 30 Seconds to Mars, and AFI hit the US Airways Center last night in downtown Phoenix.The evening included some of the best angst-driven rock anthems of the past 15 years -- well, from at least two of the acts.

The night began with a very solid 40-minute opening set from AFI, who, like Linkin Park, has evolved musically since their heyday. While they still may be labeled as punk, newer tracks like "I Hope You Suffer" from their latest record Burials are far from the punk roots from which they came. Older tracks from their breakout record 2003's Sing the Sorrow dominated most of their short set. JIM LOUVAU

Arctic Monkeys. Full slideshow here.
Arctic Monkeys. Full slideshow here.
Ben Garcia

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The crowd at Arctic Monkeys ranged from late teens up into the late 40s; however, since I was in the pit of the theater, the crowd there was mostly teens, 20-somethings, and drinkers with these massive cups of beer. Anytime someone walked past me with one of those things, I feared for my life and my clothes. While the pit remained halfway full, the seats were completely packed, all the way to the top.

The Arctic Monkeys started their set with "Do I Wanna Know?" which ended up sounding just like the album track. The audience thoroughly enjoyed this song as they lift their hands and moved them back and forth to the downbeat, while others were swaying back and forth with their gigantic beers. During "Arabella," Alex Turner took the microphone off the stand and played around with the audience in the pit. MANDI KIMES

Belle and Sebastian. Full slideshow here.
Belle and Sebastian. Full slideshow here.
Melissa Fossum

I fully expected to hear a night filled with mumbling and complaining. A gin and tonic costs $8 at the Orpheum Theatre, and, after a long, hot summer, I think we all were really excited to go outside, watch some music at Civic Space Park, and actually enjoy ourselves. After both the Crescent Road Trip to Arcosanti and the bulk of Summer Ends Music Festival programming were rained out and moved indoors, we could have all been really grumpy and shitty about last night's venue change, but you try being sad while Belle & Sebastian are playing "Piazza, New York Catcher."

The group played what frontman Stuart Murdoch described as a "smattering of Belle & Sebastian throughout the ages." For a band that's been making solid indie pop for nearly two decades, that might mean you didn't get to hear your absolute favorite B&S song last night (cough, "Step Into My Office, Baby", cough), but they did play a pretty solid representation of the band's discography. HEATHER HOCH

The Black Keys came on stage at US Airways Center last night in front of a light blue curtain with red, velvet stage drapes with gold trim on either side. After the fourth song, during a tension-building burst of distorted guitar noise, the curtains dramatically dropped, and the band launched into the opening guitar riff of "Same Old Thing." Behind the band were a series of screens that shifted and moved on unseen tracks and featured various visuals and projections of the performance.

It wasn't anything new -- the first time I personally saw the whole "screens moving around and coming together to create trippy visuals" thing was at Radiohead's King of Limbs tour stop in Colorado in 2012. But the way the Black Keys' set incorporated these screens, squares that would drift apart and then occasionally move together to form one giant square and so on, was absolutely spellbinding, much more so than Radiohead's use of it a few years earlier.

In a way, that's a perfect analog for the Black Keys in general. DAVID ACCOMAZZO

BroLoaf. Full slideshow here.
Melissa Fossum

Most Tempe residents flocked to Tempe Beach Park to watch fireworks on Fourth of July, which is a shame, because they missed out on a massive party at Yucca Tap Room. BroLoaf returned for its 5th annual Fourth of July Party and fought terrorists, won a wrestling tournament, and partied with Hillary Clinton and Captain America. Better yet, there was free "cocaine" and enough Pabst Blue Ribbon for everyone!

A BroLoaf show is performance art. You'll hear roughly an hour of fast punk songs about partying, Scottsdale culture, and douchey behavior, but that's the fun of it. Listening to a BroLoaf song on its own sounds like a humble brag (see "your girlfriend comes home with me" in "Champions on Parade"), but it all comes together in the live show, which is kind of like a play, only you're going to go home drenched in beer and sweat. There's really no "safe" place at a BroLoaf show, you're going to go home needing a shower, period. MELISSA FOSSUM

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