The Regency Ballroom

Sports!

Sports!

Do you know what today is? You do. It’s July 5. That means that here in the Bay Area, it’s Huey Lewis’s birthday.

Speaking of the heart of rock and roll, let’s talk about this week’s concerts. Here’s what we’ve got coming up this week in the Bay Area: symphonies, troopers, and remembrances.

So, we’ll preview this now. Previewing now. Let’s preview and go ahead and preview. Preview go!

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John Dyer Baizley of Baroness

John Dyer Baizley of Baroness

Near-death experiences have often been labeled as the reason behind sudden shifts in artistic mindsets, philosophy, spiritual beliefs, and overall lifestyle changes. For the men of sludge-psych heroes Baroness, who experienced their own brush with the beyond in a horrific bus crash in Bath in 2012, it almost spelled out the end of the band, with founding member Allan Blickle and new bassist Matt Maggioni leaving the group after their recovery. Their frontman, John Dyer Baizley, thus had the incredible task of healing from his own injuries and also deciding what to do with the thunderous force that he had been helping to craft for half a decade. Miraculously, Baroness have returned, possibly even stronger than before, and their plight has not affected their egos whatsoever — they are genuinely as passionate and ferociously happy to be onstage as ever, and grateful for all who have come to see them.

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Four decades of experimental musicianship, catalogued onscreen and crammed neatly into a minimalistic trio performance

Randy of The Residents

Randy of The Residents

If you’re an act that’s been around for over 40 years, chances are that there are a few people who have heard of you. You probably have some chart-topping hits, your members are household names, and everyone in the band has been in some scandal or gossipy news story at some point during their career. This is the way of rock music — for everyone, it seems, except for The Residents, who exist as an experimental entity far more than any kind of traditional “band”. Formed in Shreeveport, LA and eventually based in San Mateo, CA, the Residents have managed to remain anonymous for the entirety of their career, and each of their subsequent works takes any previous notions of “what kind of band” they were and throws them bodily out the window. With such a dizzying body of work behind them, it’s never a sure thing what the group will do on each of their tours, and their current magnum opus Shadowland is no exception.

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Justin Hawkins of The Darkness

Justin Hawkins of The Darkness

By now — 15 years after their formation — everyone going to see The Darkness in concert should have a pretty good idea about what to expect, which explains how frantically excited your average Darkness fan is to see their heroes onstage. Current-day concert staples, like visuals and projections taking the lead over physical antics, or an attempt to make all of one’s instruments as virtual or digital as possible, are absolutely abandoned in favor of a glorious, visceral display of rock-and-roll shenanigans. There are wild solos, there are hair flips, there are leaps and bounces off of the drumset, and everything about the gig feels absolutely alive. Neither a smallish crowd, nor a Sunday night timeslot (typically less favorable with the work week looming shortly after), could deter the Suffolk quartet from rocking just as hard as they have ever done, and it was delightful to witness.

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While Leif and his posse may not have actually worn 'em, they are fun to wear.

While Leif and his posse may not have actually worn ’em, they are fun to wear.

Do you know what today is? It is Leif Erickson Day here in the USA. Let us celebrate explorers as well as arbitrarily-horned helmets.

Also, the Litquake festival begins in San Francisco! A solid day for a book about explorers.

After that’s done with, let’s look at the concerts coming up this week in the Bay Area. Skol, let’s preview! [read the whole post]

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Emmylou Harris

She put the “Hardly” in the Hardly Strictly.

It’s a packed week with Hardly Strictly Bluegrass in Golden Gate Park and Alternative Press Expo in San Jose.

Coming up we have concerts by old people, young old people, and very old people who don’t much age. Let’s preview! [read the whole post]

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