The 10 Best Concerts of the Week: Alice Cooper, Bruno Mars and More

Alice Cooper around Halloween. Spooky.
Alice Cooper around Halloween. Spooky.
Melissa Hennings
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Gear up for Halloween later this month with Alice Cooper on Tuesday night, or for the more faint of heart, check out the Ladies from the '80s show Thursday night featuring Debbie Gibson, Tiffany and Lisa Lisa. If neither of those extremes pique your interest, there's plenty going on in between.

Bruno Mars    
8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 15 at American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave., $90 and up at ticketmaster.com

In 2016, Bruno Mars told Billboard his then upcoming third studio release would need to be as good, if not better than his previous, 2012’s Unorthodox Jukebox. That album won a Grammy, kicked off his second world tour and sold more than 6 million copies worldwide; even attempting to match that level of success is ambitious in its own right. The jury’s still out on whether or not 24K Magic will hit the same heights as Mars’ sophomore album, but it is probably fair to say it won’t. Despite perhaps not being quite as ubiquitous a name in 2018, Mars is ever the showman and by any definition of the word, 24K Magic can only be described as a success. Three of the album’s singles have reached or surpassed platinum sales. And while the title track might be disregarded as a clear rehash of “Uptown Funk” by some, it’s an enjoyable tune overall if you just take it for what it is. “That’s What I Like,” a danceable and sultry R&B track, has thus far made the biggest impact, matching some of the biggest hits of Mars’ career. And Mars has further showcased his versatility on “Wake Up in the Sky,” a recent feature with Gucci Mane for his upcoming album Evil Genius. Bruno Mars hasn’t skipped a beat. Nicholas Bostick

The Funky Knuckles
9 p.m. Monday, Oct. 15 at Three Links, 2704 Elm St., threelinksdeepellum.com, free

The Funky Knuckles have been together for almost a decade. In 2014, the band's second album, Meta-Musica, hit No. 1 on iTunes’ jazz chart the first day of its release. The band has played with major national and local acts such as Beyoncé, Erykah Badu, Chrisette Michele, Talib Kweli, Puff Daddy and the Polyphonic Spree. The band incorporates elements of improv and thoughtful compositions into its sets. Last year's release, New Birth, has seen much critical acclaim within the jazz community. Diamond Victoria

Singer-Songwriter Night with Josh Fleming
7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 15 at Fort Worth Live, 306 N. Houston St., 817-945-8890 or fortworthlive.live, free

Joshua Fleming, vocalist and guitarist for local cowpunk sextet Vandoliers, recently began hosting a recurring gig welcoming new songwriters at Fort Worth Live. By sharing his knowledge of the music biz, Fleming hopes to help young musicians find their foothold in the industry. During this "songwriter's night," as he calls it, Fleming plays his music and considers it a great chance to try out new material for the audience. He also wants the Monday night sets to be a way for young songwriters to hone their craft and network with local veteran musicians for potential collaborations. If you're looking to catch a first glimpse at some of the area's best up-and-coming singer-songwriters, this weekly gig is the place to be. DV

Alice Cooper
8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16 at Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, 316 W. Las Colinas Blvd., Irving, $35-$99 at livenation.com

Alice Cooper returns to North Texas, continuing his support for his latest LP, Paranormal. It's his first time to hit up the Toyota Music Factory, which is a great fit for the kind of spectacle he puts on. He played the similarly-designed Starplex last time with an immensely entertaining blend of his theatrics and great songs. He's 70 now, and he puts on a show that is meant for the people down in front to the back of the grassy area. He's the ageless rock 'n' roll villain. You'll hear a few new songs, but most of his sets contain his best-known songs from when Alice Cooper was also the name of a band as well as a solo act. Though his show and appearance are long since removed from the time when it was shocking, the songs and vaudeville theatrics still hold up. Eric Grubbs

Ladies of the '80s
with Debbie Gibson, Lisa Lisa and Tiffany, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18, at Allen Event Center, 200 E. Stacy Rd., $35-$75

Ladies of the '80s brings together the women who ruled the roost of 1980s bubblegum pop. Debbie Gibson, Lisa Lisa and Tiffany had teenagers screaming with hits like "Only in My Dreams," "Head to Toe" and "I Think We're Alone Now," respectively. Gibson was recently a cast member on Dancing With the Stars and has appeared on Broadway since her chart-topping days. Lisa Lisa was one of the biggest Latin pop stars, and Tiffany  set a record as the youngest female artist to top the Billboard charts. DV

This Will Destroy You
With Steve Hauschildt. 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20 at Granada Theater. $20-$30. granadatheater.com

This Will Destroy You creates music that was originally pegged as too similar to Explosions in the Sky. Since their third LP, Tunnel Blanket, they've made their own sound, mixing Animal Collective influences and others that don't make you say Texas Forever. With a new rhythm section in hand, the four-piece have a brand new album out called New Others Part One. They will return to the Granada, a place that has been a perfect fit for them. You have to let their music slowly seep into your bones, and it creates a feeling you can't really get with another band out there. EG

Blue October
7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20, at Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, 316 W. Las Colinas Blvd., $20-$70

Alt 103.7 FM is presenting a performance by alternative rock band Blue October on Oct. 20. With a bevy of Top 40 singles and eight albums to its credit, the band has been a huge force on the indie-alternative scene since forming in the late '90s. Jeff Strowe

The Blow
with Francine Thirteen, 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, at Ruins, 2653 Commerce St., $15

The Blow isn't just an electronic music duo. Khaela Maricich started it as her solo project in 2002, and Jona Bechtolt, formerly of Yacht, joined later. The Blow now consists of Maricich and Melissa Dyne, who incorporate performance art and monologues into their sets. The Blow has released 10 albums since its conception. DV

Billy Joe Shaver
7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, at The Kessler Theater, 1230 W. Davis St., $24 and up

Billy Joe Shaver is a mainstay in the outlaw country scene. He hangs out with Willie Nelson and Robert Duvall and even shot a man outside a saloon in Waco if that tells you anything about how much of a badass he is. The 79-year-old Corsicana native is a real honky tonk hero and his latest album, Long in the Tooth, came out in 2014. DV

Alice in Chains
8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, at Choctaw Casino Resort, 4216 S. Highway 69/75, Durant, Okla., $55-$70

Alice in Chains just put out a new LP called Rainier Fog, so they're fresh and ready to play again. Co-frontman William DuVall has proved to be a reliable member of the band, replacing mythic original vocalist Layne Staley over 10 years ago. The rest of the band remains solid, with fellow co-frontman Jerry Cantrell harmonizing perfectly with DuVall. Though they could play things safe and play only the old stuff, the band plays material from all their albums. Lately, they've played a lot of songs from their biggest album, Dirt, so it serves as a way of embracing the past and present. EG

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