Things to Do

Best Phoenix Concerts This Week: Mt. Joy, The Dear Hunter, STRFKR

Andrew Keyser
Mt. Joy is scheduled to perform on Tuesday, August 2, at The Van Buren.
This week, the Valley will experience two hallmarks of the summertime concert season: indie darlings and nostalgia acts. In the case of the former, indie rock acts like Mt. Joy and STRFKR are both due in town over the next few days, while the latter will be embodied by '90s alt-rockers Third Eye Blind, who are scheduled to visit Arizona Financial Theatre on Thursday.

What else does the Valley’s concert calendar have to offer this week? Read on for more details, or you can click over to the Phoenix New Times concert calendar for more live music happening from Monday, August 1, to Thursday, August 4.

The Dear Hunter

Monday, August 1
Crescent Ballroom, 308 North Second Avenue
In music, nothing stays verboten forever. Prog used to be a dirty word in rock ‘n’ roll as it conjured risible visions of keyboard towers and concept albums with names like Topographic Mana Salad. Prog-rockers dressed like wizards, and not the cool black metal kind of wizards — pointy hat’d Sorcerer’s Apprentice shit. But tastes change, the forbidden becomes orthodoxy, and a few Mars Volta albums later, here we are. Casey Crescenzo’s The Dear Hunter project isn’t afraid to go prog. Their new album, a full-length concept album called Antimai, goes full-bore into Rick Wakeman-esque territory. With its themes about dystopia and the ravages of capitalism on a natural world, it makes sense that the proggy Crescenzo is touring with the ambitious emo band The World is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die — both groups are unafraid to push past the boundaries of their older work to explore heavy, apocalyptic themes. And despite the heaviness of their subjects, The Dear Hunter and TWIABPAIANLATD make uplifting and anthemic music to help you rise above it all. 7:30 p.m., $28 via Ashley Naftule

Decrepit Birth

Tuesday, August 2
The Underground, 105 West Main Street, Mesa
If their name or twisted-looking logo didn’t already clue you in, Decrepit Birth is a death metal band — and an astoundingly talented one at that. But before you break out the crucifixes and “Hail Mary” chants, the California-based band resides more in the realm of technical death metal with their jazzy riffs, melodic elements, and psychedelic vibes. Since forming in 2001, they’ve released four studio albums, including such critically lauded releases as 2008’s Diminishing Between Worlds and 2010’s Polarity. They’re back on the road again with longtime frontman Bill Robinson behind the mic again after he took a six-month hiatus. Their current tour — which also features openers Pathology, Condemned, Forsaken Skum & Celestial Exile — comes to The Underground this week. 7 p.m., $18 via Benjamin Leatherman
click to enlarge
The members of indie-rock band Mt. Joy.
Matt Everitt

Mt. Joy

Tuesday, August 2
The Van Buren, 401 West Van Buren Street
America likes vulnerability in its art and nowhere else. We love singer-songwriters who give something of themselves in their songs, and confess secrets in their lyrics; we love memoirs and confessions and celebrity vanity projects. But everywhere else — in our politics, our business, our personal lives — to admit that we’re wrong or afraid or unequipped to face the present moment is seen as weakness. This is something that Mt. Joy’s Matt Quinn understands quite well. On “Orange Blood,” the title track of the Los Angeles quintet’s new album, Quinn sings “free from the chains of our ego/pain is what makes us equal.” So many of the songs from this folky rock band, whose music often dabbles in head-expanding psych and toe-tapping blue-eyed soul, exhort the listener to find the silver lining and stay in touch with what’s real and true in their lives. Even when they’re playing songs that sound big enough to fill a stadium, Mt. Joy looks like a band playing at the bar down the street — a mountain inside a molehill. With Wilderado; 8 p.m., $39.50-$45 via Ashley Naftule

Third Eye Blind

Thursday, August 4
Arizona Financial Theatre, 400 West Washington Street
If you were listening to rock radio in the late ’90s, you undoubtedly heard such Third Eye Blind hits as “Semi-Charmed Life,” “How's It's Going to Be,” and “Jumper” on the regular. If you still know the lyrics by heart, you can sing along when 3EB swings through the Valley on its summer tour with emo/post-hardcore band Taking Back Sunday. Feel free to dance along to the tunes, just like you did in your car back in the day. You’ll also hear songs from Third Eye Blind’s latest album, 2021’s Our Bande Apart, including the single “Box of Bones.” 7 p.m., $39.50-$99.50 via Benjamin Leatherman


Thursday, August 4
The Van Buren, 401 West Van Buren Street
Portland indie-pop band STRFKR and their highly danceable beats have drawn comparisons to groups such as Neon Indian and Passion Pit over the years. Frontman Joshua Hodges brings enough lyrical insight to the table, though, which tends to get you thinking while you’re boogieing to their mix of electronica, synth-pop, and neo-psychedelia. Such is the case with the tracks on Future Past Life, the first of two albums STRFKR released in 2020, which was praised for its “lyrical maturity.” The band is still touring behind the album and comes to downtown Phoenix this week along with SoCal-based indie band The Undercover Dream Lovers and psych-rock artist Das Kope. 8 p.m., $25-$28 via Troy Farah