Concert Reviews

Mystic Braves delivers sounds of summer to Soda Bar

“One more! One more!” A packed Soda Bar begged the evening’s headliners Mystic Braves to continue playing as their hour-long set neared its end. Eager to continue, the Los Angeles–based quintet responded without missing a ...

Chamber musicians light the path

The final chamber music concert at the Timken.

The final Timken Museum Mainly Mozart concert was a rough one for me. There were two pieces of music on the program, Kodaly’s Serenade for Two Violins and Viola and Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 9. ...

Guided by Voices is back on beat

Indie stalwarts deliver rock-and-roll salvation to Belly Up

There is an old saying in the music biz that a band is only as good as its drummer. On this evening, Kevin March proved that theory. March recently replaced another Kevin (Fennell) on the ...

Entirely not Mozart, entirely badass

All-star symphonic performance neatly frames the master

What would happen if you brought an orchestra together which was comprised of principal players from a slew of different organizations such as The LA Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, ...

Lionel Richie rouses Sleep Train

...revisits hits to everyone's delight

Lionel Richie launched the show with the latter-day “All Around the World,” but then dismissed any critics by playing a full set of hits from the ‘80s and earlier. He began with a rendition of ...

Wanda Jackson's still one hard-headed woman

The Queen of Rockabilly graces the Casbah stage

Just one night after appearing at Long Beach’s Ink ’n’ Iron Festival, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Wanda Jackson played for a smaller, but no less enthusiastic, sold-out crowd at the Casbah. For many, ...

Where punk rock and comedy commingle

Black Fag and Meatmen split a bill at Soda Bar

While watching the “absolutely fabulous” Black Flag tribute band “Black Fag” at the Soda Bar, the major flaw with the current touring version of Black Flag finally dawned on me. There is no joy in ...

Thundercat brings Apocalypse to the Irenic

It should be within every budding musician's interests to play like Thundercat. The bass wizard Stephen Bruner could very well start a school, if he had any desire to. The six-string bassist got his start ...

Band of Skulls takes House of Blues, Himalayan style

Band of Skulls erupted at House of Blues with their edgy, high-octane blues rock that at times sounded like the love child of Cream and Black Sabbath. The UK trio rolled in, strapped up, and ...

Tom Jones sings the blues

Tom Jones’s House of Blues concert was a more stripped-down affair than his typical shows. It was billed as a blues show, but people expecting Jones to wail away on Chicago blues classics like “Sweet ...

Diiv's waves of sound crash on Casbah

Casbah concertgoers gathered to see Brooklyn-based indie-rock poster children DIIV perform a sensory-soaked performance. Frontman Zachary Cole Smith walked onstage to tune his guitar and cheekily greeted the audience before plunging immediately into their debut ...

Debussy, Bartok, and Tchaikovsky at The San Diego Symphony

Concert master Jeff Thayer plays the solo while Debussy and Tchaikovsky pine and yearn.

There is something about Debussy's Prelude to the Afternoon of a Fawn that aches with nostalgia. When the piece started at the Jacobs Music Center on Saturday night, I settled in to experience a happy ...

Blistering band, bleeding ears

Girls and boys, the Men!

Over their last three albums, Brooklyn band the Men have evolved from their punk roots to more traditional rock. In fact, their most recent effort, Tomorrow's Hits, feels like a classic-rock album covered by a ...

Fest faves Temples take to smaller stage

The Casbah, being a smaller venue, was an opportune setting to see Temples up close. Temples is an English psychedelic-rock band that has played major European festivals (as well as this year’s Coachella) and supported ...

"New Chicano" rapper Rossi on the rise

San Diego hip-hop artist Rossi rocked the mic at House of Blues during San Diego's inaugural DunkXChange, a trade show for sneaker heads and hip-hop enthusiasts. Rossi kicked off his set with “Crack and Some ...

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