11 Concerts to Catch This Weekend

click to enlarge JON LICHTENBERG
Jon Lichtenberg


Way back in the 1980s, Brazilian-born singer-guitarist Max Cavalera started Sepultura when he and his brother Igor were still teenagers. That band left an incredible legacy (and the group still exists but without the Cavaleras). Cavalera explored his heritage with Sepultura and then with Soulfy, which initially formed in 1998 after Cavalera left Sepultura in 1996. Calavera started writing the songs for the band's latest album, Archangel, in September of 2014. After he wrote the riffs, he laid down drum tracks with the assistance of his son. He decided to call it Archangel because of its biblical theme. As he has put it, the album details a “biblical apocalyptical atmosphere.” The hoarse vocals in plodding tunes such as “Shamash” and “Bethlehem’s Blood” speak to the album’s dark theme. And the eerie bonus track “Soulfly X” recalls the work he did on Roots, the Sepultura album that explored his Brazilian background. Expect to hear those tunes and more at tonight's show. (Jeff Niesel), 5 p.m., $20.80. Agora Ballroom.

Cheap Trick

Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen, a founding member of the group, once described the band as "America's greatest pop/rock garage band." Some would argue that after they conquered Budokan, they instantly nabbed international status as perhaps the world's greatest rock 'n' roll band. The Rock Hall finally inducted the group this year. More than four decades into their journey, Cheap Trick remains one of the hardest working bands in the business. For Nielsen and the other members of Cheap Trick, they remain fiercely dedicated to making sure that people are still knocked out by each and every live performance that they do. (Matt Wardlaw), 9 p.m., $17.50-$55.
Public Hall.

An Evening with Vince Gill

When you take a quick glance at singer-guitarist Vince Gill’s career stats, it’s not hard to see that he eventually accomplished that mission, thanks to a lot of hard work. He has a healthy stack of hit singles from across the years, including five that went all of the way to the top of the country music charts. But he also remains firmly grounded when it comes to what’s really important to him personally as an artist. He's become such an icon that he doesn't even need an opening act. 8 p.m. Hard Rock Rocksino.


Upon first listen, one might not know what to make of the surprisingly funky sound of Tuareg’s latest musical export, but that’s exactly what the band is shooting for. Mixing modern Western pop melodies and instrumentation with pan-African rhythms that draw from the traditional Saharan sounds, the quintet’s music is a fresh blend of music from distinctly different origins. Although most in an American audience will probably have a hard time understanding any of the words to their songs, which are spoken in the band’s native language, there will be plenty of variety in the band’s set to keep those on the Musica’s floor dancing throughout the night. Guitarists in the crowd will have the chance to walk away with a new piece of hardware, too, as the concert’s host, EarthQuaker Devices, will raffle off a new pedal. (Jacob DeSmit), 9 p.m., $10. Musica.


Besnard Lakes

Headed by husband/wife songwriting team Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas, this six-piece from Montreal regularly draws inspiration for its music from its namesake, a Canadian camping and fishing site. The band was formed after its wedded core returned from a getaway trip to Besnard Lake with demos that would become the band’s earliest recorded material. Throughout its 15-year history, the duo has used that location as annual inspiration for their atmospheric music, which has evolved as the band has expanded to accommodate more members for its most recent releases. On the group’s latest, A Coliseum Complex Museum, the spacey vocal harmonies of Lasek and Goreas are grounded by stringy guitars and epic synth, forming the group’s most balanced and engrossing sound yet. (DeSmit), 8 p.m., $12 ADV, $14 DOS. Beachland Tavern.

Ellie Goulding

"Love me like you do," Ellie Goulding croons on "Love Me Like You Do," the monster hit from last year's Delirium. Placement in the film Fifty Shades of Grey gave the saccharine tune a good boost. Elsewhere, Goulding embraces EDM with the "Don't Need Nobody" and "The Greatest." Tonight's concert marks the opening of the summer season at Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica. While Goulding's electronic-heavy tunes probably work best at Vegas-like nightclubs, they possess upbeat tempos that should make for a festive atmosphere. (Niesel). 7 p.m. Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica.

Local H — As Good As Dead 20th Anniversary Tour

Local H singer-guitarist Scott Lucas grew up in Zion, Illinois — a place that isn't exactly teeming with rock bands — and looked to acts like R.E.M. for inspiration. After all, those guys had come out of another small American town (Athens, Georgia) and ascended to international fame after being embraced by college radio. Originally, the band self-released a 7-inch EP as well as a few cassettes; it would become a two-piece by default after an original guitarist and bassist quit. And back then, two-pieces weren't as cool as they are now. The band signed to a major label in 1995 and its sophomore effort, As Good as Dead, became a huge hit as "Bound for the Floor," a song with sneering vocals that sounded like a distant cousin of Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit," became a hit on commercial radio. The band celebrates that album's anniversary with tonight's show which features original drummer Joe Daniels and current drummer Ryan Harding. The first set features Lucas and Harding; the second set features Lucas and Daniels playing As Good As Dead in its entirety. Both drummers perform with Lucas for the encore. (Niesel), 9 p.m., $15. Musica.

Sinatra Night with Michael Sonata

Canton native Michael Sonata has always been involved in plays and choirs and was a member of the University of Notre Dame Glee Club. In 2004, he auditioned for a role in a Sopranos spoof that required a character based on Frank Sinatra. Sonata got the part and has been imitating Ol’ Blue Eyes ever since. He includes some 90 songs in his repertoire and covers all eras, including the Columbia years and the Capitol years. He even takes requests from the audience. (Niesel), 8 p.m., $10. Music Box Supper Club.


Engelbert Humperdinck

One of the last of the old school lounge/soft rock singers who sings about romantic love like it’s something precious, Engelbert Humperdinck hammed it up when he appeared at Hard Rock Live at Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park back in 2014. And yet Humperdinck, who returns to the venue tonight, still took soft rock seriously enough that older members of the crowd didn't think he was just phoning it in and goofing around. Humperdinck devoted most of the second half of that 2014 show to playing material from 2014's Engelbert Calling, an album of duets that debuted in the UK Top-40 Album Charts at No. 31. At 80, the singer shows no signs of slowing down and comes to town as a part of a world tour that will take him to faraway places such as Cairo, Singapore and the Philippines. (Niesel), 7:30 p.m., $25-$75. Hard Rock Rocksino.

The Sheepdogs

The Sheepdogs hadn’t been on the road too long before they started picking up international acclaim. The Saskatoon band found itself adorning major festival bills all over the continent, and the ensuing albums — a 2012 self-titled release and 2015’s Future Nostalgia — evinced a confident rock ‘n’ roll band, no chaser required. The more recent album is a fully blossomed flower of scorching garage rock-meets-arena rock. It’s dynamic and alive, filled with enough hooks to keep even the most jaded millennial listener engaged. “I Really Wanna Be Your Man” and its drums will get stuck in your head, and that’s not the only example at play here. (Eric Sandy), 8 p.m., $15 ADV, $18 DOS. The Kent Stage.

Thelma and the Sleaze

Nashville’s Thelma and the Sleaze play sledgehammer hard rock custom-made for slow-motion “taking of the town” Hollywood scenes. Founded in 2010, the band tours heavily in support of self-released singles and EPs. Slathering Nazareth and/or Motorhead riffage with the moans and wails of Janis Joplin, the trio shows that the sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll club isn’t just for old boys. They have yet to announce a label for their forthcoming full-length but you can expect to hear some songs from it tonight. (Bethany Kaufman), 9 p.m., $5. Happy Dog.

About The Author

Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected]
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