The 13 Best Concerts in Phoenix This Weekend

Snoop Dogg is scheduled to perform on Saturday, October 21, at the Arizona State Fair.
Snoop Dogg is scheduled to perform on Saturday, October 21, at the Arizona State Fair. Jim Louvau
As you’re no doubt aware by now, the long-awaited Lost Lake Festival is happening this weekend. And it’s likely to be the topic of conversation (and the focus of your social media feeds) over the next 72 hours or so.

But it’s not the only attention-grabbing music event taking place in Phoenix this weekend, nor is it the only festival.

Other notable shows and fests happening over the next few nights include Snoop Dogg and Cafe Tacvba at the Arizona State Fair, A$AP Mob at Mesa Amphitheatre, and Com Truise at Crescent Ballroom.

Meanwhile, Fear Farm will host KUPD’s latest Big Red Night of the Dead extravaganza on Friday and the NOFX-sponsored Punk in Drublic festival on Saturday.

Details about each of these events (including Lost Lake) can be found below. And for event more shows happening this weekend, check out our online concert calendar.

The musicians of Café Tacvba. - COURTESY OF THE ARTIST
The musicians of Café Tacvba.
Courtesy of the artist
Café Tacvba
Friday, October 20
Arizona State Fair

We live in volatile, unpredictable times – and it’s exactly that kind of uncertainty that drives Jei Beibi, the latest release from Mexico’s alternative rock icons Café Tacvba.

Jei Beibi, its title a Spanglish pun pronounced “Hey Baby,” is the band’s eighth full-length album and its first in five years. On it, the quartet tackle all sorts of heavy, real-life themes: fate and faith, new parenthood, and the everyday stress of the current sociopolitical climate.

Jei Beibi also deals with the very real, very poignant experience of growing old. After almost three decades together as Café Tacvba, the members of the group are in or nearing their 50s. Their self-titled debut album celebrated the 25-year milestone this past July. Aging and passing time, thus, are on the band members' minds, and it’s almost palpable on album track “El Mundo en Que Nací” (“The World I Was Born In”), a soothing lullaby del Real penned for his two kids.

In the ’90s, Café Tacvba helped define and popularize the rock en español scene, an international movement across the wider Latin American world that saw artists mixing rock music with traditional, regional, and folkloric elements of their homelands.

Café Tacvba solidified Mexico’s role in the burgeoning genre with their seminal 1994 album Re, on which they pioneered a new sound built on experimentation and regional styles including bolero, ranchera, norteño, huapango, and banda. John Ochoa

Screaming Females
Friday, October 20
Valley Bar

They're called Screaming Females, but that primal, cuts-you-in-half sound you hear comes from Marissa Paternoster's guitar, which she uses to speak the language of Neil Young and Greg Ginn both — actually, both at once — on several album of punk built from nothing but sharp edges.

Screaming Females have been DIY since day one, rising from the all-ages basement shows of their homeland of New Jersey to build themselves a band that's gonna be as indestructible as the Wipers, P.J. Harvey, Sleater-Kinney, or Dinosaur Jr. (You know the deal: shreds up front, rhythms in the back.)

When old people wonder about the kids being alright, what they're really hoping for is to get a chance to see this band. Proof that punk is still live and loud. Chris Ziegler

click to enlarge Lauren Denitzio of Worriers. - JESSICA FLYNN
Lauren Denitzio of Worriers.
Jessica Flynn
Friday, October 20
Trunk Space

“When I leave you’ll never notice it / but I relive those years like phantom limbs,” Lauren Denitzio sings on the wistful and rousing “Future Me.” It’s one of the standout songs on Survival Pop, the newest album by Denitzio’s group Worriers. Survival Pop shows the band doing what they do best: writing hook-laden pop-punk songs that address gender issues, scene politics, and activism with deeply personal lyrics.

Whether it’s summing up the struggle between gender identities (an issue close to Denitzio’s heart as a queer artist) with the haunting line, “You are floating between two ends that don’t matter” in “They/Them/Theirs,” or talking about how the passage of time can weigh you down on “Future Me,” Denitzio has a poet’s talent for speaking volumes in a single line.

It’s a talent the band shares: Worriers can pack more hooks and fist-pumping melodies in one song than most bands can stuff into a whole album. Like their heroes Against Me! (whose Laura Jean Grace produced the band’s 2015 album Imaginary Life), Worriers know how to make songs that sound like rabble-rousing anthems and private confessions at the same time. Ashley Naftule

click to enlarge DJ Xam Renn - IVAN ROSE
DJ Xam Renn
Ivan Rose
Nu/Flesh: La Danse Macabre
Friday, October 20
The Rebel Lounge

’Tis the season for all thing freaky, fantastical, and frightening. We’re mere days away from Halloween, which means everything spooky and scary is definitely in vogue. That’s true of the nightlife scene, as several Halloween-themed dance parties will be happening in the build-up to the holiday.

One of the cooler ones will be happening over at The Rebel Lounge, where the folks behind nights like 1984! and Nu/Flesh are putting on an event called La Danse Macabre on Friday, October 20. And, as you can imagine, it’s likely to be a dark and doomy affair.

DJ Xam Renn and special guest DJ Zander will spin selections of post-punk, dark wave, industrial-techno, cold wave, and EBM (that’s electronic body music for the uninitiated). Patrons are encouraged to wear costumes, particularly if they “dress to wake the dead.” The macabre mayhem starts at 9 p.m. and the event is strictly for the 21-and-over crowd. Admission is $5. Benjamin Leatherman

click to enlarge Mastodon headlines this year's Big Red Night of the Dead. - JIMMY HUBBARD
Mastodon headlines this year's Big Red Night of the Dead.
Jimmy Hubbard
KUPD’s Big Red Night of the Dead
Friday, October 20
Fear Farm

If holidays were assigned official music genres to represent them, it makes sense that metal would be partnered with Halloween. Don’t agree? 98KUPD’s Big Red Night of the Dead might convince you.

This annual concert is held at the already spooky site of the Fear Farm. This year, it’s a shred-fest, featuring a day-into-night roster of metal bands from the U.S. and Sweden whose heavy riffs run from thick and chunky to speedy and blistering. The lineup includes Of Mice & Men, Avatar, In This Moment, and local Tempe band DED, who perform leading up to a set from headliners Mastodon.

Food, drink, and a variety of goods can be purchased from on-site vendors. The headbanging Halloween fun starts at 3 p.m. on Friday at Fear Farm. All ages are welcome. General admission is $45. A $125 VIP ticket includes complimentary food and drinks, a private bar area, and front-of-stage access. Amy Young
KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Phoenix New Times