Best Concerts to See in Phoenix This Week
Dengue Fever, which is playing Crescent Ballroom on Thursday, September 11
It's rainy. Near-record-setting rainfalls smacked Phoenix in the lip last night, as you no doubt heard via the bomb-like thunder circa 4 a.m. today. Highways have flooded, schools have closed, and offices have turned into wastelands. One dramatic consequence of flooding is that people tend to cocoon themselves into their homes and wait out the storm -- depressing small businesses that rely on customers' leaving their houses in order to survive. So if things ease up in the next few nights -- as unlikely as that may look -- don't hesitate to go out and support your local businesses and musicians. It's looking like it's going to be a slow night for everyone playing music tonight; get out there and support your local artists. They'll be eternally grateful. Not to mention any show you see will be way more intimate than any other show you could see. With that said, here are our recommendations for music this week. Check out our comprehensive concert listings for more options.
The SunPunchers offer a sultry helping of desert soul, buoyed by the deep alto of Betsy Ganz and propelled by Dry River Yacht Club's Henri Bernard (drums) and The Shammys' Jeff Schnuck on mandolin. The Lovelost are a long-needed helping of romantic music, song in multiple languages. Free show on a rainy Monday night? Perfect. --Phoenix New Times
The raw, stripped-down simplicity of the duo She Keeps Bees confirms the notion that big things can come in small packages. Relying on little more than drums, gritty minor-chord guitar, and the sultry-to-warbling vocals of Jessica Larrabee, She Keeps Bees is brooding, dark, mysterious, and perfectly chaotic. Shifting from quiet, hushed passages to thrashing outbursts, Larrabee's guitar-playing is full of churning emotion, a perfect foil to her lush vocals and introspective lyrics. Behind her, Andy LaPlant adds the perfect percussive touch, opting for a minimalist approach that allows Larrabee her release. "I think the intensity comes from the fact that we whittle it down so much. We're trying to make something as meaningful as we could, so there's not a lot of fluff," LaPlant says from New York. The band's latest, Eight Houses, shows a heavier side of the band, with louder guitars and vocals and equal emphasis on the drums. Sharon Van Etten adds accompanying vocals on two tracks, while occasional saxophone or synths filter through for added depth. "There's some stuff on there that's a lot different than what we've done in the past," he adds, "but I don't think it's so farfetched that it will turn anyone off." --Glenn BurnSilver
You'll need a minute to take in everything you see onstage before Dry River Yacht Club begins to play -- bassoons, violins, clarinets, and French horns aren't exactly staples for "indie" acts (not since the 1800s, anyway). Once the instruments are fired up, it won't take you more than a few seconds to realize you're listening to something unique. Beyond the smattering of random instruments, DRYC have the ability to create an array of sounds that can either dovetail seamlessly or form layers. They can stir a whirlwind of emotion and collapse neatly at a moment's notice, dialing dial up and down the intensity as necessary. In the space of a single track, like "Broken Back," the sound shifts from Johnny Cash to symphony to the Middle East. It fits and it makes perfect sense, but don't spend too much time trying to figure out how or why. --Brian Bardwell
Yes, Linkin Park allegedly has problems with marijuana. Yes, the band is partially responsible in the unforgivable rise of nu-metal and rap-rock during the dark days of the early 2000s. But Linkin Park remains one of Phoenix's most important contributions to the national music scene, and their homecoming show should be a perfect showcase of the scream-rap formula that changed modern rock, for better or worse. --David Accomazzo
With all this talk about Ebola hemorrhagic fever, perhaps we should think about something to take our minds off the disease, something like Dengue Fever. No, not the tropical, mosquito-borne virus (that'd probably only increase hypochondriacal paranoia). Rather, let's talk about the six-piece Los Angeles psychedelic rock band that skillfully combines Cambodian pop songs with the chromatic stoner sounds of the '60s. After organist Ethan Holtzman spent more than six months backpacking through Southeast Asia, he got a kind of fever of his own -- he'd fallen in love with the region's eclectic retro style. Returning to L.A., he and his brother Zac found Chhom Nimol at a karaoke bar and discovered that her knack for Khmer-based melodies would make her the perfect fit for the band. Five albums later, there is perhaps no better living band with which to take a holiday in Cambodia. --Troy Farah
Find any show in Metro Phoenix via our extensive online concert calendar.
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