Curious as to what's going on around town this weekend? Need some suggestions as to how to rock, dance, or krump in the Valley of the Sun? Don't fret. We've got the hook up on what shows you might be interested in attending over the next couple nights and days.
This time around, our recommendations include a gig by the clever and amusing pop punk act Iron Chic tonight in Tempe, an appearance by legendary jazz/Latin/funk trumpeter Herb Alpert, and the all-day alt-rock festival Liquid Sol. And if those options don't suit your tastes, hit up our extensive online concert calendar for more choices.
In the meantime, here are our picks for the top concerts to see this weekend.
Iron Chic - Friday, March 14 - Yucca Tap Room I'm sad to report that The Iron Sheik has nothing to do with New York melodic punkers Iron Chic. The iconic (and batshit insane) professional wrestler may appreciate some of the band's songs, even though they deal more with everyday angst than a rivalry with Hulk Hogan. "True Miserable Experience" sums up the band nicely, opening with a steady beat, distorted power chords, and a Gin Blossoms reference. And "Hey Jealousy" builds to the chorus of "I've run out of fuck to give."
Iron Chic's music traffics in in-your-face pop punk that undoubtedly will sounds better with a crowd of beer-chugging beardos turning choruses into gang vocals. And the song titles are rife with pop culture references and offbeat hilarity ("Castle Numbskull," "You Know What I Mean, Jellybean?") that have nothing to do with the lyrical content. It's part of the fun. "The World's Greatest Detective" is a nod to Sherlock Holmes, who isn't much of an authority on a question most millennials face with every paycheck: "How can we worry about retirement when we can't pay our rent?" -- Melissa Fossum
Attending Liquid Sol will be somewhat akin to jamming out in the car to some of your favorite rock radio hits of the last 20 years, albeit with a much better sound system. The outdoor festival, which takes place Saturday in the shadow of University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, is replete with a baker's dozen of hit-makers who crafted numerous ear worms, chartbusters, and guilty pleasures that you probably already know all the words to by heart. Hang out on the park's emerald green grass all day and you're likely to hear such songs by Liquid Sol performers as "Father of Mine" (Everclear), "Dirty Little Secret" (All-American Rejects), "Found Out About You" (Gin Blossoms), "I Alone" (Ed Kowalczyk), "Shimmer" (Fuel), "Teen Angst" (Cracker), and "Crazy Bitch" (Buckcherry). And feel free to rock out without fear of being judged by those around you, since they're likely to be doing the same. -- Benjamin Leatherman
Larry and His Flask - Saturday, March 15 - Crescent Ballroom With hipster culture proliferating exponentially, you knew it was just a matter of time before some band did this. Well, Larry and His Flask (from Oregon) are that band. The sextet, which rocks banjo, harmonica and upright bass have successfully fused punk rock with the dulcet tones of bluegrass. Not sure you're into it? Well, doubting Cletus, don't knock it before you've tried it. They got a purty sound for sure, y'all.
Larry and His Flask will share the bill at the Crescent this weekend with like-minded Americana practitioners Scott H. Biram and Austin's Whiskey Shivers. -- Brandon Ferguson
Like his paradoxical moniker, rural Wisconsin-born Brooklyn transplant Alex Schaaf combines kaleidoscopic vocal loops, sparse drums, and electronics into a bubblegum whole with a nuanced, dark edge. Charting unexplored territory somewhere between Grizzly Bear, Elliott Smith, and the Tallis Scholars, his recent release and record label debut The Mistress is a testament to the power of GarageBand--Schaaf's peripatetic studio included a movie theater, an office, a dorm room, and his own bedroom. He enlists We Are Scientists drummer Michael Tapper to join him in the echo chamber, by turns expansive and claustrophobic, but Schaaf can do something an ostrich can't: defy gravity.
He may not be as recognizable without the Tijuana Brass, but this ol' labelhead and trumpeter had his catchy/kitschy string of hits in the '60's, not to mention a disco hit in the '70s. Lately, he's been teaming up with his wife, singer Lani Hall; their previous album of standards mined pre-rock pop while their new one mines Van Morrison and the Beatles in a jazzy bossa style. For adult contemporary, it's nice, relaxing stuff ID'd by Herb's clear tone. -- Jason Gross
Herb Alpert and Lani Hall are also scheduled to perform on March 17.
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