The State Fair of Texas is in full swing, which means justifying eating deep-fried everything just got a lot easier. But limiting the amount of beers and brats this month is probably a good thing, and with the shows happening in Big D, there are plenty of reason to spend your money elsewhere. Elvis Costello visits the Majestic Theatre, Chance the Rapper fills The Bomb Factory and, well, if the urge to fill up on funnel cakes is too strong, Nelly plays a free show at the State Fair, too.
8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 10, at Dada, 2720 Elm St., 214-742-3400, or dadadallas.com, $18 to $20.
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. Falling James
The Temper Trap
With Coast Modern, 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11, at Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave., 214-824-9933, or granadatheater.com, $35.
Australia's The Temper Trap have earned just enough success to fill venues but maybe not enough to be a household name — at least not yet. Their 2009 debut full-length album Conditions was a huge hit with the single "Sweet Disposition," and they've since followed it up with two other albums — most recently Thick as Thieves, released this year. They shifted to something more polished with this album, likely because of the addition of two major pop producers in the biz, Pascal Gabriel (Marina and the Diamonds, Goldfrapp) and Damian Taylor (The Killers, Björk). It's a canon of neon-colored pop rock and is sure to keep the band's momentum strong. Diamond Victoria
Elvis Costello With Larkin Poe, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 11, at Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St., 214-670-3687 or liveatthemajestic.com, $59 to $79.
One of the pioneers of new wave, Elvis Costello’s career has been nothing short of seminal. After releasing My Aim is True at the height of British punk, his career has evolved steadily over the next four decades. Before making his way into mainstream culture, Costello matched wits with cultivated lyrics made popular at the time by the likes of Bob Dylan and Elton John but added a ruthlessness that was textbook punk rock. And his aversion for the press and onstage rudeness only cemented him further into the chaotic scene. But by the early '80s, Costello’s onstage antics shifted gears to something a little more conventional. Three of his releases made their way onto Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time in 2003. His continued innovation has helped maintain his relevance, and he has collaborated with a number of prolific artists since the beginning of his career, including Jenny Lewis, Billie Joe Armstrong, Allen Toussaint, Paul McCartney and, for whatever reason, Kid Rock, Fall Out Boy and Marcus Mumford. Any fan of punk music who wishes to legitimize themselves should familiarize themselves with Costello’s extensive back catalog, as his influence cannot be denied. A repertoire this expansive is sure to guarantee an engaging show for fans of all ages, even if he doesn’t always have the best taste in collaborators. He is the 80th best artist of all time, after all. Taylor Frantum
8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 12, at The Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 214-932-6501, or thebombfactory.com, Free.
Known for dark melodies laden with churning guitars, chunky riffs and lead singer Lajon Witherspoon's haunting timbre, Sevendust carved its niche in the alt-rock/nu-metal landscape some years ago. By the time the band's third record, Animosity, landed them mainstream attention in 2001, they'd already landed a spot on the Mortal Kombat soundtrack with "My Ruin," from their 1997 self-titled debut (which went gold). They'd also jammed onstage with Pantera's late fretboard mangler, Dimebag Darrell. Last year they released Kill the Flaw, which many reluctant metalheads hate to love. Christopher Lopez
With Royal Teeth and Swimming With Bears, 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, at Curtain Club, 2800 Main St., 214-742-6207, or curtainclub.com, $16 to $18.
When a band becomes as popular overnight as Rooney did back in 2003 with songs like "Shakin' Up" and "If It Were Up to Me," it's no huge surprise that they've since trickled down the charts a little. Just like indie rock alums Death Cab for Cutie, Rooney's popularity rocketed after appearing on the teen soap The O.C. in the early 2000s. The pop-rock outfit had all the right ingredients to create some of the most catchy and teen-obsessed tracks of the time. They continued to record and play live shows, but have likely seen their salad days come and go. After a brief hiatus, however, singer Robert Schwartzman announced earlier this year that Rooney will be releasing their first album since 2011 — with an entirely new backing band. DV
With Brett Eldredge and Maren Morris, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, at American Airlines Center, 214-222-3687 or 2500 Victory Ave., americanairlinescenter.com, $29.75 to $69.75.
He’s everyone’s favorite Aussie country star rocker who can riff on the guitar and sing a song about falling in love in the back of a cop car. Keith Urban has had a career in country music spanning more than 25 years. You would recognize him for his long, blonde locks and the way he bends his knees when he plays the electric guitar. Plenty of others will recognize him as a judge on American Idol. If an Aussie can sing music that falls in the country genre without ever actually singing about a farm or tailgate, Urban has pulled it off. When he visits American Airlines Center he’ll be bringing along one of country’s latest stars-in-the-making, Maren Morris. The Arlington native hasn’t performed in North Texas since releasing her debut album, Hero, which netted her five Country Music Award nominations last month. Paige Skinner
8:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at the State Fair of Texas, 3921 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., 214-565-9931 or bigtex.com, Free with admission to the Fair.
When you think of what the city of St. Louis has to offer musically, one name automatically comes to mind: Nelly. Born in Austin and raised in the Gateway City, he and his friends created a group called the St. Lunatics. Although successful locally, Nelly broke through as a solo act. His first hit, “Country Grammar (Hot…)” off his debut album Country Grammar, debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 album chart in 2000. The pop-rapper brought a different sound to rap music and has been able to cross over into various genres of music throughout the 16 years since that breakout hit, and he’s had plenty more since. “Hot in Herre,” “E.I.,” “Over and Over” and “Ride Wit Me” are just some of the biggest. He brings his Midwest flavor to the State Fair of Texas this weekend. Aria Bell
Taking Back Sunday
With You Blew It! 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, Sold out.
Taking Back Sunday is a band that shouldn’t exist anymore. With their breakout hit “MakeDamnSure” debuting over a decade ago and emo music undergoing another fundamental evolution since then, it’s safe to assume that the band hasn’t made anyone below the age of 25 swoon in years. That being said, the band presented anthems for sadboys across the United States and left a legacy that would shape pop-punk acts for years to come. Taking Back Sunday has released two albums in the last two years that engage and satisfy existing fans. In fact, the band has never really released a definitively bad record. Not bad for a group that consistently contributed songs to mediocre superhero films throughout the mid-2000s. Taylor Frantum
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Chance the Rapper
With Francis and the Lights, 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16, at The Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., 214-932-6501 or thebombfactory.com, Sold out.
It’s been a good year for Chance the Rapper. 2016 has seen the Chi-Town MC skyrocket from highly touted and potentially great to zeitgeist-helming mega star, someone whom mentor and friend Kanye West called “the future” of hip-hop. The catalyst for this breakout year is his latest offering, Coloring Book, a glowingly ambitious mixtape that looks to the past to elevate the present into the future, and easily one of the year’s best releases. Something of a gospel record fit for the 21st century, Coloring Book overflows with jazzy, soulful arrangements and celebratory moods, a joyful, technicolor counter to the monochrome trap productions and fierce lyricism that’s dominated hip-hop of late. You won’t find a more uplifting statement from any artist all year. Jonathan Patrick
With Against Me!, Dave Hause and the Vox Populi, 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16, at House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., 214-978-2583 or houseofblues.com/dallas, $45.
Bad Religion continues to be a vital band, in election years and non-election years. The mind and voice of Greg Graffin still makes you think about the lyrics he sings and love the catchy vocal melodies. With new drummer Jamie Miller in tow and a new record set for release in 2017, you will hear many pop-punk barn burners, and not necessarily obvious ones. The band has a vast catalog and they aren't afraid to dig deep into it to find songs that will delight. Whether it's "Television," "Best for You" or "Let Them Eat War," you cannot deny how strong these songs are and this band is. With Against Me! and Dave Hause along for the tour, this won't be a punk rock salute to years gone by. It will be a salute to how vital punk rock still is. Eric Grubbs