The 10 Best Concerts in Dallas This Week: alt-J, A$AP Rocky & More
Make sure you keep your left hand free for alt-J this week (whatever that means).
Thanks to the grace of trickle-down festival economics, this week is absolutely stacked with bands coasting off the momentum of Austin City Limits Fest and passing through Dallas. And let's face it, unless you're independently wealthy and capable of buying a VIP festival ticket with some sort of personal bathroom and stage-side seating, the Dallas concerts will be infinitely more enjoyable. So get out there and proudly represent the 214, and take a moment to appreciate wondrous indoor concert amenities such as air conditioning, actual bathrooms and an audience that doesn't function like a savage post-apocalyptic war tribe.
With San Fermin, 8 p.m. Monday, October 5, at South Side Ballroom, 1135 S. Lamar St., 214-421-2021 or southsideballroomdallas.com, $39.50
Almost a year to the day since their last visit, alt-J return to the Gilley’s complex to perform for their loyal fanbase of KXT donors and the last vestiges of KDGE listeners. It’s been a barn-burning run for alt-J since they debuted with their Mercury Prize-winning An Awesome Wave in 2012. That album launched the British band to stardom in their native U.K., then the smart sophomore effort This Is All Yours captured the attention of American audiences with its hit single “Left Hand Free.” Embedding themselves in the collective American alt-rock consciousness, the band are all but guaranteed a run toward the top, much like fellow Brits Coldplay and Muse before them. Expect a large crowd of superfans at the South Side Ballroom; Dallas music fans are getting smart about skipping Austin City Limits and enjoying the fest’s overflow right at home. Sara Button
Albert Hammond Jr.
With Lord Huron, 7 p.m. Tuesday, October 6, at House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., houseofblues.com/dallas, $15
Remember how much you used to like the Strokes? Wasn’t Is This It just the coolest damn thing? Are you over Julian Casablancas? Well, guess what: We feel no shame in saying our inner Strokes fan-kid is pretty stoked about this show. Albert Hammond Jr., guitarist for the Strokes (who will, not uncoincidentally, play Austin City Limits Fest this weekend), is touring his recently released third solo-album, Momentary Masters — his first since 2008’s ¿Cómo Te Llama? With Momentary Masters, Hammond takes a detour from the rock ‘n’ roll sound of the Strokes, exploring his psyche in a calmer, more serene way. This makes sense, because Hammond credits Carl Sagan (a notorious slack rocker) as a major influence on this record. As a bonus, Lord Huron will join Hammond for the Dallas show, adding another layer of bearded, indie-rock awesomeness to the evening.
7 p.m. Thursday, October 7, at The Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 214-932-6507 or thebombfactory.com, $19-40
The two Brits who make up Royal Blood have taken a feather out of Death From Above 1979's cap and gone full rhythm section; only bass guitar and drums are used as instruments. The heaviness is balanced out by the sly singing of Mike Kerr, which stumbles up and down his impressive vocal range. Beyond the clear DFA influence (and no one's complaining), it's even more obvious that these guys have taken it and made it their own — and they're sure to keep it interesting. Matt Wood
9 p.m. Wednesday, October 8, at House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., houseofblues.com/dallas, $20-25
The band known as Red come from the birthplace of all great ambient metal bands: Nashville, Tennessee. Though their sound is similar to groups like Seether and Three Days Grace, Red stand out by flipping between impressive falsetto vocals and harsh growls from lead singer Michael Barnes. Judging by the patterns of their music videos, they very easily could've been sent back from a post-apocalyptic future, so maybe we should be taking notes from their lyrics. MW
8 p.m. Friday, October 9, at Club Dada, 2709 Elm St., dadadallas.com, $15/$17 at the door
Since being named one of the best new bands of 2012 by Pitchfork, FIDLAR have managed to meet the expectations that come with such a distinction. More important, they’ve bucked the trend of bands being heralded by Pitchfork only to be tossed aside when something newer and shinier comes along. This can largely be attributed to the band’s skate-punk aesthetic; they could really “give a fuck” about what the media think of their music. This sort of idealism garners attention from today’s young listeners, who have been raised in a world of little need and have taken a turn from ennui into a more hostile brand of boredom. Lucky for them, FIDLAR make the type of music they can easily identify with: Life might suck, but there’s always a 40 ounce to be found and a party to be had. Nothing but age can stop the good times from coming, and FIDLAR are here to soundtrack them till that happens. Jaime-Paul Falcon
With Fitz & the Tantrums and Trombone Shorty, Friday, October 9, at Reunion Tower, 300 Reunion Blvd. E., thereuniondallas.com, $40-$125
We’re a year past the 20th anniversary of Weezer’s The Blue Album and just months away from turning the calendar to 2016, which will mark the 20th anniversary of Pinkerton. Rivers Cuomo and company are smack dab in the middle of their nostalgia tour, aka victory lap. It helps that Weezer’s fans are the type to settle down and work steady jobs — they can afford to throw down for a show that helps them grasp the memories of their youth. Weezer have always felt like the college-aged younger brother of the bigger, more serious ’90s bands. So it’s convenient that the band’s stop in Dallas takes place the same weekend as the biggest and busiest college event, the Texas-OU football showdown. The festival is called The Reunion because of its location, but for Weezer and their fans, the name couldn’t be more appropriate. SB
With Tyler, the Creator, Danny Brown and Vince Staples, 7:30 p.m. Friday, October 9, at South Side Ballroom, 1135 S. Lamar St., 214-421-2021 or southsideballroomdallas.com, $45
At first glance, A$AP Rocky and Tyler, the Creator seem like an odd couple. On the one hand you have Rocky, the Harlem-raised, Houston-inspired rapper who represents everything luxurious and cool about rap music, and then there’s Tyler, the anti-establishment Peter Pan of the rap game. But they’ve paralleled each other in their ascents to fame since 2011. They were the heads of formidable crews in A$AP Mob and Odd Future, respectively; they’ve developed cult-like followings; and each released an album in 2015 that conquered new artistic peaks. Given their independently large fan bases, this co-headlining tour isn’t odd at all. In fact, with Danny Brown and Vince Staples rounding out this heavy-hitting lineup, it’s more reminiscent of the Fantastic Four. Mikel Galicia
with New Found Glory, 7 p.m. Saturday, October 10, at Gas Monkey Bar 'N Grill, 10261 Technology Blvd. E., 214-350-1904 or gasnmonkeybarngrill.com, $25-45
Somewhere nestled in one of your middle school mix CDs, at the crest of the pop-punk bubble, was an unavoidable track titled "Ocean Avenue" by the genre's dead-horse beaters, Yellowcard. Whether you were sleeping all day or staying up all night, there was absolutely no escaping this anthem, which has endured through sheer catchiness with no logical explanation. To give some sort of metric to musical endurance, the band's most played track on Spotify is, of course, "Ocean Avenue," which was released in 2003 and has twice as many plays (16 million, Christ) as the next most popular song. In fact, the top four songs are all from that 12-year-old album despite being followed up by five additional albums, including one last year. So whether through some time-defying wormhole or a cockroach-like longevity, the band's clearly here to stay — even if it means being trapped in some early '00s Hot Topic-branded amber. MW
8 p.m. Saturday, October 10, at Winstar World Casino, 777 Casino Ave., Thackerville, Oklahoma, 1-800-622-6317 or winstarworldcasino.com, $35-$65
In the last year, there has been no brighter light in country music than Kacey Musgraves. With just two albums, the East Texas girl (she’s from Golden, just outside of Mineola) has been able to shake up the country music establishment and force her way into the mainstream. Now she’s riding high as one of the genre’s biggest stars. In support of her second release, Pageant Material, Musgraves’ “Rhinestone Revue” at the Winstar World Casino will undoubtedly be one of the best country shows of the year. Last year, Musgraves played to a packed Granada Theater, and now she has upgraded to a much larger venue up north. It will be interesting to see how Musgraves transitions from indie sensation to bonafide superstar. Amy McCarthy
6:30 p.m. Sunday, October 11, at Verizon Theatre, 1001 Performance Place, Grand Prairie, 972-851-5111 or verizontheatre.com, $40-80
J. Balvin hasn't quite crossed over to the States yet. But to give you an idea, the Spanish-speaking reggaeton artist's songs have nearly 1 billion YouTube views. His biggest hit, "Ay Vamos," has 530 million hits alone, which is almost as many as T-Swift's "Bad Blood." The T-Pain-esque tinge of autotune gives his vocals a familiar quality, while the Hispanic influence gives it a unique flair. MW
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