English post punk/New Wave band Psychedelic Furs embark on an extensive tour of North America and the UK starting next week, with a series of concerts keeping them busy through October. The modern rock pioneers will be bringing the hits on their concert series, The Singles Tour. With seven studio albums and 22 singles, fans can expect to hear favorites like “Pretty in Pink”, “Heartbreak Beat”, “Love My Way”, and “The Ghost In You”. Joining The Furs on tour is English singer-songerwriter Robyn Hitchcock. [Read more…]
I usually open my reviews with a quote from the artist, but Phantogram didn’t do too much talking during their set, and when they did their words were mostly lost among adulation from the cheering crowd. Their live sets are still driven by songs from last year’s Three, which I voted at the #1 album of 2016. I’ve personally been dying to hear songs off this brilliant album live, as last year each time the duo and their band were playing local, I was traveling elsewhere. So with their appearance at Grand Sierra Resort & Casino’s Grand Theatre in Reno Friday night, I was not disappointed. This was actually my favorite concert thus far in 2017. Phantogram are so amazing right now the rest of the world needs time to catch on. [Read more…]
Following up on their tour dates earlier this year in March and April, Duran Duran will be kicking off a new leg of their 2017 tour with two stops in the Bay Area in California, first at Fox Theater in Oakland on July 7th and then at the Masonic in San Francisco the next night. The band continues to support their 14th studio album (and first with Warner Bros. Records), the excellent Paper Gods, which was produced by the legendary Nile Rodgers, Mark Ronson, Josh Blair, and Mr Hudson. [Read more…]
“Every little thing, is gonna be alright… We’re just gonna do this for fifteen minutes!” Jason Mraz & His Superband closing out the first of two sets, channeling a bit of Bob Marley. Which seemed quite appropriate, given his fun and optimistic “an evening with…” style show at Ironstone Amphitheatre on Sunday night, marking his only Northern California show on this tour. Early in the first set, he advised the audience, “you are permitted to sing… you are invited to sing… you are practically obliged to sing…” The audience accepted this challenge and most were up on their feet dancing and singing throughout the night. Mraz certainly has a distinct outlook on life that he carries with him and that is contagious with his fans (who span all ages, gender, and culture), and I’d have to say it was certainly the most joyful show I’d seen out of dozens at this beautiful venue, and that’s saying a lot.
Fans of The Moody Blues got to experience the band like never before on Sunday night at Ironstone Amphitheatre. Featuring “an evening with…” style concert presentation, The Moody Blues played two full sets in front of the massive crowd in attendance, the first with various hits from their career and the second presenting a track by track playing of every songs from their groundbreaking album, Days of Future Passed, which celebrates it’s 50th anniversary this year. They looked and sounded great, and there was a lot of magic in the air as they recreated this landmark album live on stage.
“Now this next song, I must have been about 25 when I wrote this song… I don’t even know why I play it anymore other than I know you guys want to hear it, right?” John Melloncamp on stage at Ironstone Amphitheatre at Ironston Vineyards Saturday night, talking about writing his hit song from the 80s, “Jack and Diane”. The venue was packed with fans turning out to see their blue collar hero from decades past, though it is a strange kind of incongruity with what inspires the fans still today seems to be more of a thorn in the side of the man who captured their imagination with these songs for which he does not seemingly share the same sentiment himself today. Regardless, he delivered an impressive set and supporting artists Carlene Carter and Emmylou Harris did the same.
“Let’s see some hands!” Tommy DeCarlo, vocalist from Boston, getting the massive crowd at Ironstone Amphitheatre in Murphys reaching up to the sky during “Cool The Engines”. Essentially a double-header with Joan Jett & The Blackhearts performing earlier, it was a stellar night of classic rock spanning the last four or five decades. The two artists were a great choice to pair up, in that they had great crossover in fans but were also a showcase in contrasting styles and approaches to bringing their music to life on stage. Joan Jett & The Blackhearts were stripped down to just the instruments they needed to recreate their raw punk rock style as the sun set into the horizon behind the crowd while Boston had a fantastic spaceship themed backdrop across massive monitors that seemed to fuel their hard and progressive rock sounds. Early on in Richter Entertainment’s Summer Concert Series, this show set a bar for high energy and pure rock and roll for all the artists to follow.
Swedish indie pop band Miike Snow and duo Phantogram will be coming to Grand Sierra Resort & Casino’s Grand Theatre at the end of June as part of their sometimes intersecting Summer concert tours. Both acts released their third studio albums in 2016, with Miike Snow’s iii and Phantogram’s Three each receiving fan and critic accolades (Rock Subculture actually names Phantogram’s album #1 in my end of the year feature). With both artists on the same bill, it is certainly a show not to be missed on June 30th, or at one of the other dates on their respective tours. [Read more…]
Daniel Ash and Kevin Haskings have formed a new band, Poptone, to perform a series of live dates, including a stop in Sacramento at Ace of Spades on June 6th. As Poptone, Daniel Ash serves on vocals and guitar, his daughter Diva Dompé on bass, and Kevin Haskins on drums. Ash and Haskins played together in Bauhaus, Tones on Tail, and Love and Rockets, and are playing music from all three bands in this series of live shows. [Read more…]
“We gotta remember and identify and know that the only thing we gotta fear with the craziness and the madness and some of the very difficult evil things that have happened, is not to be human, is not to be cooperative, not to be looking out for one another, but to be spreading the good stuff everywhere…” Midnight Oil’s (“the Oils”) Peter Garrett, in his preface to “Put Down That Weapon”, the band’s second single off of their seminal 1987 album, Diesel and Dust. Some 30 years later, lyrics from the song and the ideas that they invoke seem as poignant as ever. The band has been mostly off the scene as Midnight Oil since they dissolved in 2002, so with their 2017 reformation and world tour, they have made an unexpected return to much acclaim and excitement. I was a huge fan of that 1987 album as it blew up in the U.S. at the time, and I had never had a chance to see them perform live until this show at Fox Theater in Oakland on Saturday night. It was nothing short of incredible, and will certainly rank as one of my favorite gigs of the year. They are touring a lot in 2017 and crossing back to cities already visited, so I give my highest recommendation to turn out for one of these events…