The members of Scorpion vs. Tarantula.
The members of Scorpion vs. Tarantula.
Vistonie Dravnos

The 10 Best Concerts in Phoenix This Weekend

It's the weekend and you've got roughly 72 hours of free time at your disposal. So watchu going to do with it? If you'd like to go to a concert, we've got a few suggestions – 10 of 'em in fact.

You can check out gigs by famed Soundcloud rapper Smokepurpp or Texas-born conjunto band Los Texmaniacs, get rowdy with comedic country singer Wheeler Walker Jr., or bust a move at electro-pop night D.A.N.C.E. Other highlights of this weekend’s concert calendar include shows by Petula Clark, Scorpion vs. Tarantula, Silverstein, and The Devil Wears Prada.

Details about each of these shows can be found below in our list of the best concerts happening in the Valley this weekend. And for even more live music happening around the Valley, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.

Friday, November 30
The Pressroom

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  • Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019 / 7:00pm @ Comerica Theatre 400 West Washington Street Phoenix AZ 85003
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  • Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019 / 7:00pm @ Yavapai College Performance Hall 1100 E. Sheldon Prescott Prescott AZ 86301
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  • Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019 / 7:30pm @ Music Hall At Valley Bar 130 N. Central Ave Phoenix AZ 85004
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It would not be a stretch to say that without Smokepurpp, there would be no Lil Pump. Purpp and Pump have been thick as thieves since they met in grade school, and the two were even expelled the same day. When Purrp began to pursue music, he asked young Pump to freestyle over a track he produced, which became his self-titled debut single, "Lil Pump." Purrp is an accomplished rapper in his own right, of course; he's put out projects such as Darkstar and the Murda Beatz collab mixtape Bless Yo Trap. He has also claimed to have "birthed this generation" of rappers, which 2016 XXL freshman Denzel Curry, who actually did that, rightly called him out on. Gotta respect your elders, even if they're only two classes ahead of you. Douglas Markowitz

The members of Scorpion vs. Tarantula.
The members of Scorpion vs. Tarantula.
Vistonie Dravnos

Scorpion vs. Tarantula
Friday, November 30
Chopper John’s

You could sum up a Scorpion vs. Tarantula show like this: Band walks into a bar, band destroys bar with blistering show of punk rock-and-roll led by a throaty, wrecking ball of a woman named L. Hotshot. In fact, if you used that summary every single time, you wouldn’t be wrong. While Hotshot rips through the crowd, mic in hand, fists pumping and singing her glorious guts out, the band – Jay Bennett on guitar, Tana Satana on bass, and Michael “Cappy” Renfroe on drums – is busy providing a ferocious backdrop that keeps the crowd in full fever mode until the last note is rung. Amy Young

Petula Clark
Friday, November 30
Celebrity Theatre

Petula Clark is best-known for a series of effusive, infectious songs that helped define the image of the "Swinging London" during its glory years in the mid-1960s. Indeed, for those whose memory is still flush with those halcyon days when all things English dominated pop culture, she was a genuinely formidable presence, a feminine presence that complemented The Beatles, the Stones, The Who, The Kinks, and all those other acts that dutifully participated in the initial wave of the British Invasion.

In truth, the songs didn't stop in the '60s, even though her later efforts were never as formidable. Still, that didn't prevent her from mining her earlier arsenal. She remade "Downtown" in 1988, renaming it "Downtown '88," and it returned her to the U.K. top 10 and a belated appearance on the venerable Top of the Pops. Her last attempt at a hit was "Oxygen" in 1992, a song produced by singer Nik Kershaw.

Clark continues to tour, and in 2000, she starred in a one-woman show, a self-penned musical about her life and career. In November 2006, she was the subject of a BBC documentary titled Petula Clark: Blue Lady, and last year she took center stage in a DVD titled My Music: The British Beat, part of a video series detailing the British Invasion. This weekend, she’ll perform at Celebrity Theatre. Lee Zimmerman

The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix.EXPAND
The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix.
Benjamin Leatherman

Old School! '90s R&B and Hip-Hop Dance Party
Friday, November 30
The Van Buren

Hip-hop fans, rejoice. A lot of landmark albums have celebrated a major anniversary this year, which is cause enough for celebration. To wit: Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle, Wu-Tang Clan’s Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), and A Tribe Called Quest’s Midnight Marauders are all turning 25. Meanwhile, discs like OutKast’s Aquemini, Big Pun’s Capital Punishment, and Hieroglyphics’ 3rd Eye Vision are celebrating their 20th anniversary.

There’s a good chance you’ll hear tracks from many of these influential albums playing over the sound system of The Van Buren during the Old School! '90s R&B and Hip-Hop Dance Party on Friday night. As you'd probably guess by the name of the event, local DJs Slick 76 and Jorge Melo will spin up retro hip-hop and R&B hits throughout the evening, including joints and jams by many of the aforementioned acts. You might also hear tracks from such ‘90s faves as Beastie Boys, Warren G., Ice Cube, Usher, Tupac, and the Notorious B.I.G. The party starts at 9 p.m. Admission is $5. Benjamin Leatherman

Max Baca (second from left) and the other members of Los Texmaniacs.
Max Baca (second from left) and the other members of Los Texmaniacs.
Courtesy of the MIM

Los Texmaniacs
Friday, November 30
Musical Instrument Museum

Grammy winners Los Texmaniacs are a beautiful marriage of conjunto, rock and roll, bajo sexto, accordion and Vox organ, and is one of the great cultural contributions and most recognizable exports of San Antonio, Texas. The quartet is led by Max Baca, who's acknowledged as a world-class virtuoso of the bajo sexto, the Latin equivalent of the 12-string acoustic guitar. And according to the band leader, Los Texmaniacs is one of only a handful of ensembles carrying on that sound. “Of course there’s the [Texas] Tornados,” says Baca. “The Krayolas have stayed the course, and Mitch Webb also does a cool San Antonio thing. But there aren’t a lot of bands that do that true San Antonio rock sound anymore.” Expect their performance at the Musical Instrument Museum on Friday night to include some conjunto, a couple of Quintet covers, popular originals like "Down In the Barrio" from their self-titled 2015 album Americano Groove, and some cool vato radio hits like “Low Rider” or “Cisco Kid.” William Michael Smith

Fortunate Youth
Friday, November 30
Club Red in Mesa

Out of Los Angeles comes a group of six friends whose mission to spread a positive influence through the power of reggae music has earned them the right to help represent California reggae across the globe. Formed in 2009, Fortunate Youth has continued to evolve as a band while keeping their message of “Peace, Love, and Unity” as a staple of their live performances and close connection with their supporters. Powered by good vibes, endless support from their fans, and lots of proper medication through the use of MMJ laws, Fortunate Youth will bring its positive vibes to Club Red in Mesa on Friday night. Josh Heinrichs, Skillinjah, Clint Stevens, and Torn at the Seam will open. David Garcia

DJ Davina
Michael Edgecomb

Friday, November 30
Crescent Ballroom

If, for some inexplicable reason, we were asked to compile a list of experts on the Valley’s indie dance scene, A Claire Slattery, DJ MyKill, and DJ Davina would be among our first picks. Why? Quite frankly, they’re among some of the more active DJs in the dance scene these days and know a thing or three about what’s going on. So it seems fitting that the three would team up for an event like D.A.N.C.E. Taking place at the Crescent Ballroom on Friday, November 30, the event will feature Slattery, Davina, and MyKill spinning mixes of indie electro dance tracks all evening. If that weren’t enough, artists like SLWLY and Secret Attraction will perform special live sets. The party starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $3 in advance and $5 at the door. Benjamin Leatherman

Silverstein is still going after all these years.EXPAND
Silverstein is still going after all these years.
Courtesy of Ticketmaster

Saturday, December 1
Marquee Theatre in Tempe

Silverstein has never really stopped as a band. Playing across the globe since 2004, the rock band performs two sets per night. One is to celebrate their debut album,When Broken is Easily Fixed, as well as a set devoted to greatest hits/fan favorites. It’s the most they’ve played on a single tour, their latest of which hits the Valley on Friday night at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe.

Silverstein formed in 2000 in Burlington, Ontario, and they released When Broken is Easily Fixed in 2003. Though they fit in with the metalcore of the day with their use of clean and crunchy guitars and vocals, they never veered too close to what was en vogue at the time. Six proper LPs have been released since When Broken is Easily Fixed. Their most recent record, Dead Reflection, came out in 2017. And they’ve maintained most of their lineup since then, with Paul Marc Rousseau replacing Neil Boshart on lead guitar in 2012, joining vocalist Shane Told, guitarist Josh Bradford and drummer Paul Koehler. Eric Grubbs

“We’ve always tried to stay current, but not necessarily buying into whatever the new trendy thing that’s happening,” says bassist Billy Hamilton. “We’ve seen a lot of trends come and go. There have been a lot of bands that maybe we’ve not necessarily aligned with but maybe toured with. We didn’t make a crunkcore record when that was happening [laughs]. ... We just kept doing our thing but also didn’t restrict ourselves from being involved in those new trends, and those allowed us to stay relevant and current over 15 to 20 years.” Eric Grubbs

Country meets comedy during the sets of Wheeler Walker Jr.
Country meets comedy during the sets of Wheeler Walker Jr.
Courtesy of Thirty Tigers

Wheeler Walker Jr.
Saturday, December 1
Crescent Ballroom

It may be best not to try to define Wheeler Walker Jr. beyond what you’re getting from him in the moment. In a previous incarnation, he was an edgy Hollywood sketch comedian named Ben Hoffman, who mysteriously disappeared from the public appearances. But in this moment, he is a classically influenced country and western musician, buoyed by pedal steel and songs laced with R-rated lyrics.

But no matter who you think Walker really is — country music bad boy or the Tony Clifton-esque alter ego — the real question is, does it really matter? After all, Walker's independently released 2016 album, Redneck Shit, debuted at No. 9 on Billboard’s country music chart (and #1 on the comedy chart, but he says he doesn’t give a damn about that one). It's an answer to what he describes as a commercial country music wasteland presented by a Nashville music machine that is only interested in formulaic pop singles. Karen Brooks Harper

The Devil Wears Prada invades Mesa this weekend.EXPAND
The Devil Wears Prada invades Mesa this weekend.
Courtesy of Ticketmaster

The Devil Wears Prada
Sunday, December 2
Club Red in Mesa

The Devil Wears Prada excels at dark, blanketing instrumentals that sweep from brutal crowd-moshing breakdowns and atmospheric bridges to intricate riffing and uplifting melodics that reflect their collective faith. When you throw in commanding roars and unflinching, post-hardcore vocals, its now wonder the band was a hit at events like Vans Warped Tour and the Mayhem festivals.

Vocalist Mike Hranica, guitarist/vocalist Jeremy DePoyster, guitarist Chris Rubey, bassist Andy Trick and drummer Daniel Williams are hands-on in every aspect of the band and influenced by a broad spectrum of music, societal issues, and Christianity. Its been a few years since their last release (2016’s Transit Blues) but the band recently inked a deal with Solid State Records and supposedly have a new album in the works. In the meantime, they’re currently touring at will be at Club Red in Mesa on Sunday night. Fit For A King and '68 will open. Lauren Wise

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