Garbage, Waterparks and the best concerts in Phoenix this weekend | Phoenix New Times

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Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, Z-Trip and Phoenix’s best concerts this weekend

This weekend, Valley concertgoers can experience alternative rock’s past and present.
Z-Trip returns to the Valley this weekend.
Z-Trip returns to the Valley this weekend. Benjamin Leatherman
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This weekend, Valley concertgoers can experience alternative rock’s past and present. In the case of the former, ‘90s radio favorites Garbage are due at Talking Stick Resort Amphitheatre on Sunday with Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher’s solo project High Flying Birds. In the case of the latter category, brother duo The Driver Era will be at Mesa Amphitheatre on Friday and alt-rock/pop-punk band Waterparks hit The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix on Saturday.

Other notable shows over the next few nights include Murder by Death and Against Me! vocalist Laura Jane Grace at Crescent Ballroom and Brooklyn-born, Phoenix-raised turntablist Z-Trip headlining Walter Studios’ first-anniversary celebration.

Read on for more details or visit Phoenix New Times’ concert calendar for more live music this weekend.
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Z-Trip returns to the Valley this weekend.
Benjamin Leatherman

Walter Studios One-Year Anniversary feat. Z-Trip

Friday, June 9
Walter Studios, 747 West Roosevelt Street
Whenever Zach Sciacca, better known as Z-Trip, rolls up to the Valley, it's an occasion worth celebrating. (After all, the New York-born, Phoenix-raised DJ and turntablist made his bones in the ’90s spinning alongside Emile and Radar as the Bombshelter DJs at local clubs and raves before moving on the greater fame.) Sciacca’s latest visit to town carries a bit of extra significance, as it also marks the first anniversary of downtown Phoenix’s Walter Studios. The venue’s Blue Bar will host the gig, which will also feature sets from DJ, producer, and vocalist Alice.Km and locals Sean Watson, Melo, and Elvis T. Expect to hear a range of styles and genres, from hip-hop and indie pop to mash-ups. 9 p.m. $25/$27 via Benjamin Leatherman

The Driver Era

Friday, June 9
Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 North Center Street
The Driver Era may have only been around since 2018, but its members have been unleashing rip-roaring tunes for far longer. The duo is comprised of brothers Rocky and Ross Lynch, both of who were part of the blockbuster pop-rock act K5 for most of the 2010s. These day, they’re playing funk-tinged alternative rock of the poppy, radio-friendly variety, as heard in such hit singles as "LOW" and "Preacher Man.” They’ve released three albums thus far through BMG, including last year’s “Summer Mixtape.” It’s the perfect soundtrack for spending an evening at an outdoor venue like Mesa Amphitheatre, which is where they’ll be this weekend. With Colony House; 6:30 p.m., $69 via Benjamin Leatherman
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Against Me! frontwoman Laura Jane Grace.
Chris Bauer

Murder by Death & Laura Jane Grace

Friday, June 9
Crescent Ballroom, 308 North Second Avenue
Cowboys were the original punks. No respect for the law, rambling across the country, all about style, and willing to scrap at the drop of a hat. It only makes sense that Murder by Death brings the two together. Combining the dissonance of rock with alt-country grit, the Indiana-born band make music for Gothic cowboys. A little bit of distortion, a lot of twang, and even some sharp electric cello sawing ride their songs about whiskey and the Devil out into the open air. Touring with Murder by Death is Against Me! frontwoman Laura Jean Grace, who also knows a thing or two about the intersection of cowboys and rock (consider her band's breakthrough 2003 album “Against Me! as the Eternal Cowboy”). On her 2020 solo album, Stay Alive, she reconnects with the sound she explored in her squat-living, folk-punk days. The acerbic and fierce Grace has gone her own way for years, just like any ol’ high plains drifter worth their salt. 8 p.m., $37-$42.50 via Ashley Naftule
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Awsten Knight, Geoff Wigington, and Otto Wood of Waterparks.
Jawn Rocha


Saturday, June 10
The Van Buren, 401 West Van Buren Street
Since debuting in 2016, pop-punk/alt-rock band Waterparks have released three EPs, a live record, and a “greatest hits” comp, and five studio albums, including this year’s Intellectual Property. Like the rest of the group's output, it's gotten widespread acclaim from both critics and fans. Having been released back in March, it's been out long enough for Waterparks die-hards of the Valley to have memorized all of its best tracks when the band slides into downtown Phoenix concert venue The Van Buren on Saturday. Fans of sing-along choruses and snarky lyricism who are new to the band will also dig it too. With Hunny and Sophie Powers; 7 p.m., $35 via Benjamin Leatherman

Garbage and Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds

Sunday, June 11
Talking Stick Resort Amphitheatre, 2121 North 83rd Avenue
As the brains behind Oasis (a band that parlayed the question, “What if The Beatles were soccer hooligans?” into a chart-topping career), Noel Gallagher has oft been unfairly accused of running out of creative steam after the astonishing one-two punch of “Definitely Maybe” and “(What's The Story) Morning Glory?” While he continues to put in solid songwriting work with his High Flying Birds project, Gallagher’s true genius since 1995 has been in talking shit. With the exception of his equally misanthropic brother, Liam, no one can hang with Noel when it comes to issuing hilariously profane takedowns of fellow musicians like Blur’s Damon Albarn, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, and, most recently, 1975 frontman Matt Healy. While Garbage’s Shirley Manson isn’t about to take the crown of “God of Trash Talk” from Gallagher, the fellow ’90s rock star is also known for having a suffer-no-fools-gladly approach to life. Like Gallagher, she and bandmate Butch Vig have a long list of hits that still pack a punch in 2023. No ‘90s band has ever unintentionally recorded a more Arizona anthem than “Only Happy When It Rains” than Garbage, who will pour their misery down on the Valley this weekend. With Metric; 7 p.m., $29.50-$139.50 via Ashley Naftule
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