The 10 Best Concerts of the Week: Kendrick Lamar, Tears for Fears, Polyphonic Spree and More
Kendrick Lamar plays American Airlines Center on Saturday night.
Dallas music is certainly one reason to brave the heat this week. Sprinkle a little cheese on your Tuesday with new-wave group Tears for Fears and pop-rock kings Hall & Oates as they join forces for a night of singalong magic at American Airlines Center. Catch experimental duo Pinkish Black at Three Links on Wednesday or Kendrick Lamar at American Airlines Center on Saturday, or round out the week with an intimate set at Armoury D.E. with Ronnie Heart and Austin-based Knifight.
Tears for Fears and Hall and Oates
7 p.m. Tuesday, July 11, American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave., 214-222-3687 or ticketmaster.com, $35-$130
When you think of the '80s, you think Hall & Oates; you think Tears for Fears. With their bejeweled synths, powdery drum machines and period haircuts, these two duos helped define our favorite, neon-hued decade. Tears For Fears' sulky, angsty new wave style and Hall & Oates’ warm, soul-soaked ballads are a reminder that rock is at its best when wrapped in the hooky veneer of pop music. In what must be an '80s music fan’s wet dream, the two megastar outfits recently joined forces to tag team a North American tour — and our fair city was fortunate enough to make the cut. Considering that hours-long playlists can be constructed from just the hit singles these two acts released, this throwback concert is unlikely to disappoint. Jonathan Patrick
With Joshua Radin, 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 12, House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., 214-978-2583 or houseofblues.com, $20-$35
Rachael Yamagata continues to sing well-crafted pop songs that are pretty without being sugary and romantic without lapsing into complete bathos. The Virginia-born singer-songwriter is able to take her own experience and transmute it into music that is both universal and personal. “All those words you said at the ending were pretty revealing,” she sings ruefully about the end of a relationship. “Who knows why two people perfectly aligned should ever have to find themselves apart?” Even in the midst of such heartbreak, Yamagata always retains her poise, confiding her vulnerability with an endearing openness and lyrical grace.
With Def Rain and Partaker, 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 12, Three Links, 2704 Elm St., 214-653-8228 or threelinksdeepellum.com, $10
Experimental duo Pinkish Black combines synth, drums, keyboards and exceptional songwriting to create wonderful atmospheric dreamscapes. Jon Teague (drums/synths) and Daron Beck (vocals/synths/keyboards) formed Pinkish Black in 2010 and have since released three albums to the delight of national publications such as Pitchfork and Stereogum. Part industrial, part synth, part something totally unheard of before, the Fort Worth-based band's music has been described as gloomy and pessimistic but completely catchy. Diamond Victoria
8 p.m. Thursday, July 13, Verizon Theatre, 1001 Performance Place, Grand Prairie, 972-854-5050 or verizontheatre.com, $55
In a world filled with music, one man is known for having scored all of your favorite movies. And no, it’s not Danny Elfman. The illustrious Hans Zimmer will stop by Dallas as part of his Hans Zimmer Revealed tour. The show is a walk through the works of the man who’s scored every movie from Driving Miss Daisy to Inception. The show will start with some of Zimmer’s earlier scores for films such as Gladiator, The Lion King and the first Pirates of the Caribbean (aka the good one), and move along to The Dark Knight Trilogy and Inception, with special guests sprinkled in between. Zimmer, a Grammy and Academy Award winner, will conduct. Zimmer has scored more than 150 movies, video games and TV shows over the course of his four-decade-long career. That’s a pretty lofty feat, given he was kicked out of eight music schools in his native Germany. Tickets sold out for the show’s European leg, so snag your tickets while you can. Nicholas Bostick
with Travis Scott and D.R.A.M., 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 14, American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave., 214-222-3687 or ticketmaster.com, $97 and up
Kendrick Lamar is the best rapper alive, and he’s touring behind the best rap album of the year, DAMN. Released three months ago, DAMN. trades in grim political commentary, biting generational critiques and the belief the world is headed in all the wrong directions. It’s also luminous, inspiring, intensely intelligent and a platform for some of the most pure, virtuosic rapping listeners have been gifted all decade. Lamar’s wordplay and delivery, sometimes pungent and rowdy like a street brawl, sometimes smooth as silver-lined silk, are nothing short of intimidating — the way he slides and rolls, jukes and flips between beats is verbal acrobatics of the highest order. Amid its large-as-religion scale and piercing intimacy, there’s a real sense DAMN is the type of record we’ll be unwinding, examining and re-examining for the next 50 years — one of the shimmery new pillars on which modern hip hop is being built. Lamar’s opening act, Houston-born Travis Scott, is no slouch either. A product of Kanye West mentoring and an architect of sweeping, multilayered, goth-like trap instrumentals, Scott might not be Lamar’s equal as far as rapping goes, but no one save for West is as inventive behind the studio console. Jonathan Patrick
9 p.m. Friday, July 14, Stereo Live Dallas, 2711 Storey Lane, 214-358-6511 or stereolivedallas.com, $10
French electronic musician Franck Rivoire, better known as Danger, is a man of many quirks. For starters, he gives his EPs dates for titles, and they’re not released in chronological order, which makes his catalog somewhat difficult for fans to keep up with. He also frequently posts videos of strobe lights to his social media accounts and jokes about the possibility that they’ll induce seizures. Most strikingly, like his fellow Frenchmen of Daft Punk, he sports a black mask during his public appearances. He claims it's to differentiate between his shy everyday persona and his more rowdy stage alter ego. Regardless of the reasons, it reinforces the mysterious and haunting quality of his output. Attendees of Danger's Friday night show at Stereo Live should expect lots of new beats. His recently released (taiko) is another collection of cinematic synth waves and rumbling bass trembles that will surely fill the room's cavernous floors. Try to catch a glimpse of the stage when you can and see the man of mystery shrouded in his work. Jeff Strowe
With Tank and Lil Duval, 7 p.m. Saturday, July 15, Music Hall at Fair Park, 909 First Ave., 214-565-1116 or liveatthemusichall.com, $79 and up
K. Michelle has made herself a star in two of the toughest, most fickle industries by staying true to herself. When she made her R&B debut in 2009, her music immediately resonated with listeners, thanks to its positive messaging and honesty, earning her a loyal fan base. She was offered a reality TV spot on Love and Hip-Hop Atlanta in 2012 and quickly became a favorite on the show, so much so that she was asked to join the Love and Hip-Hop New York edition to boost its ratings. The series is known for its many dramatic moments, but Michelle tried to keep the focus on her music. She ultimately walked away, saying the show is scripted and dishonest. The focus will be 100 percent on her music this month when she headlines the Music Hall at Fair Park with fellow R&B singer Tank and comedy star Lil Duval. Mikel Galicia
Third Eye Blind
With Silversun Pickups, 7 p.m. Saturday, July 15, Starplex Pavilion, 1818 First Ave., 214-421-1111 or gexaenergypavilion.net, $25-$95
When you think of 1990s chart-topping pop rock, that catchy non-word chorus of "doo doo doo, doo doo, doo, doo" likely gets stuck in your head. Yep. "Semi Charmed Life" still rattles around in there from time to time, along with some of Third Eye Blind's other hits, such as "Jumper" and "Never Let You Go." The band managed to casually slip references to crystal meth, fellatio and suicide into catchy top 40 hits, all while we nodded our heads and sang along. So hats off to this quintet that plays with Silversun Pickups at Starplex Pavilion on Saturday night. Diamond Victoria
The Polyphonic Spree
8 p.m. Saturday, July 15, Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, $9
Polyphonic Spree is truly a one-of-a-kind band. The revolving-member symphonic pop choral is the product of frontman and founder Tim DeLaughter's desire to create something with the pop sensibilities of the Beatles or the Beach Boys. An act perhaps best experienced live, Polyphonic Spree combines about 15 horns, keys, strings and woodwinds to conjure something magically whimsical and totally refreshing. Diamond Victoria
With Knifight, 9 p.m. Saturday, July 15, Armoury, D.E., 2714 Elm St., 972-803-5151 or armouryde.com, Free
When you see Ronnie Heart, it's easy to tell who his influences are, from "the gloved one" to the artist formerly known as Prince. A former member of Neon Indian, Heart is a leader in the local music scene, thriving on originality, personality and pop-friendly grooves accentuated by his glassy falsetto. And with stage energy as contagious as his foot-thumping music, the Houston native has been praised by Spin and several major music magazines across the country. Diamond Victoria
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