The 13 Best Concerts in Phoenix This Weekend

Playboi Carti is scheduled to perform on Friday, July 21, at Marquee Theatre in Tempe.
Playboi Carti is scheduled to perform on Friday, July 21, at Marquee Theatre in Tempe. By villunderlondon/CC BY-ND 2.0, via Flickr
Congratulations, y’all. You’ve not only made it through another hectic work week but also reached the halfway point of summer (more or less). Both are causes for celebration.

If you’d like to mark the occasion with an evening out at a concert, you’ve got plenty of possibilities this weekend, all of which run the gamut in terms of genres and styles.

If you’re into old-school R&B, for instance, there’s the latest edition of the I Love the ‘90s Tour, which hits Talking Stick Resort Arena on Saturday and includes performances by TLC, Blackstreet, All-4-One, Rob Base, Biz Markie, and C+C Music Factory.

If you’re more into cowboy sounds, however, you might consider attending the “Soul2Show” show featuring Tim McGraw and Faith Hill (a.k.a. the prom king and queen of country) at Gila River Arena in Glendale on Friday night.

Other highlights of this weekend’s slate of big concerts includes gigs by Playboi Carti, Post Animal, Black Asteroid, Flotsam and Jetsam, and Nicolas Jaar. Local night The Hip Hop House is also celebrating its fifth anniversary, and the punks of Dephinger have a big party planned over in Glendale.

Read on for details on each of the aforementioned shows or hit up our online concert calendar for even more options.

click to enlarge The prom queen and king of country: Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. - TICKETMASTER
The prom queen and king of country: Tim McGraw and Faith Hill.
Tim McGraw & Faith Hill
Friday, July 21
Gila River Arena in Glendale

The coupling of Tim McGraw and Faith Hill has been the #RelationshipGoals of the country-music world for 20 years. No, seriously. They’ve lived together and loved together for years, and earlier this year, this pair of mega-stars released their first-ever duets album, and they're backing it up with the Soul2Soul World Tour. The country prom king and queen, who have collectively sold a bajillion records, will be at the Gila River Arena in Glendale this weekend for an evening of country-pop and crooning. Cowboy hats and Wranglers are optional. Tom Murphy

Jonny Lang
Friday, July 21
Chandler Center for the Arts

Being a prodigy can sometimes suck. Take Jonny Lang, for example. When he burst onto the scene as an astonishingly gifted 14-year-old guitar wünderkind, it must have seemed like the coolest thing in the world. Of course, as gifted as Lang is, his success was intimately linked to his youthfulness — a sort of novelty factor. Pretty quickly, that novelty began to take on a different air, with critics frequently applying his age as a qualifier, asking, essentially, if his limited years had an inverse relationship with his audience's perception. Lang, however, chose to do something at which prodigies often fail — he grew as an artist. Over the course of a decade and five albums, Lang has moved away from the strictures of structured blues, embracing a host of styles ranging from Southern-fried rock to Memphis-style soul to gospel, finding room in his music to embrace the spirit of the blues that got him started in the first place. Nicholas L. Hall

Flotsam and Jetsam
Friday, July 21
Club Red in Mesa

For our money, Flotsam and Jetsam kicks out some of the best metal around, and that’s not just because they are a bunch of hometown dudes who have made good. The band has made an impact on the world metal scene and their most recent record, their self-titled Flotsam and Jetsam, is a strong nod back to the glory days as well. In fact, the glory days of “Flots” might be upon us right now. Eric “AK” Knutson, vocals, and Michael Gilbert, guitar, have been with the band the longest, but the current lineup, which also features guitarist Steve Conley, bassist Michael Spencer, and drummer Jason Bittner, is nothing short of formidable. Their upcoming show at Club Red is the final show of a five-week tour that has seen the band traverse the country, so they should be firing on all cylinders as they return to the Valley for a hometown show. So pull on your knee-high moccasins, bust out your tightest jeans and your favorite Maiden shirt, and get ready to rock: Flotsam and Jetsam are coming home. Tom Reardon

click to enlarge Playboi Carti - GUNNER STAHL
Playboi Carti
Gunner Stahl
Playboi Carti
Friday, July 21
Marquee Theatre in Tempe

Just call him Posterboy Carti. In only a few short years, Atlanta's Playboi Carti has be-come one of the leading figures of "mumble rap." Complex Magazine called him "Rap's Young and Restless Prince." His fame in the underground is impressive, when you consider the fact that people have been praising him since 2015 and he didn't drop a mixtape until April 2017. Carti is a protege of rapper/producer Ethereal, whose experimental beats became a perfect fit for Carti's brash, swaggering lyrics. It was on early Ethereal collabs like "YUNGXANHOE" (where Carti rapped over a loop of the PlayStation 2 startup noise) and "Broke Boi" that Carti found his lane. Thanks to his single "Magnolia," Carti's started to pick up some serious heat. Its goofy "Yo, Pierre" hooks, baby noises, and woozy beats make it perfect earworm material. A song like that could make a crown prince worthy of his lofty station. Ashley Naftule

Dephinger (Music Video Shoot)
Friday, July 21
Starlite Lounge in Glendale

Infamous local skate punk act Dephinger likes their music loud, rowdy, and full of fun. And according to its members, the band’s show and music video shoot this weekend over at the Starlite Lounge in Glendale will be much the same. “It's gonna get pretty loose,” says bassist Chris Warmuth. “The bands [will] all rip, the bar is an interesting and friendly West Side spot, and we told all our homies about this show. Dephinger will be shooting the music video for one of their songs at the gig, which will also feature performances by the Heavy Chills, The Earlygrabs, Sewer Gap, and The Glides. There will also be a raffle featuring “righteous prizes” from Cowtown Skateboards, Pirate Company, Lame Brain Skatebords, Pyramid Country, The Record Room and PBR. A dance party follows with spins by DJ Brewdini, DJ Real Beat Sugar, and DJ Schralp. Best of all, admission is free. Benjamin Leatherman

The members of local rock band The Sink or Swim. - SURREALSISTER PHOTOG
The members of local rock band The Sink or Swim.
Surrealsister Photog
The Sink or Swim
Friday, July 21
The Rebel Lounge

If you'd wager a bet that desert rock in-volves singing about saguaros, it might be time to leave the house for a spell. We'd recommend seeing The Sink or Swim bring a distinct brand of desert rock to The Rebel Lounge. On Friday July, 21, the Tempe band will perform with guests The Ricky Fitts, Good Boy Daisy, and Nothing On The Moon. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30. Tickets range in price from $10 to $12 and are available in advance at Stinkweeds or online via Ticketfly. Lindsay Roberts

Read on for even more big concerts happening this weekend, including Post Animal, Nicolas Jaar, and this year's I Love the '90s Tour.
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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.