Summer jams bring the heat

By By Trevor Hale

By Trevor Hale

June is over. Hard to believe, but don’t worry. There are still plenty of summer shows left before the dreaded Fall Semester arrives, when there’s too much work and not nearly enough time for fun. Here’s the scoop on a few of the bigger shows coming to town this month.

Thursday evenings, July 10 through Aug. 28Twilight Concert SeriesFreeThe Gallivan Center

Every year the Gallivan Center hosts the Twilight Concert Series, and every year the acts get better and better. With numerous sponsors and supporters, the coordinators have been able to line up some of the music industry’s top talent. This summer, the series kicks off with a bang when The Roots drop in July 10. For more than 15 years, The Roots have been setting the hip-hop world on fire with its eclectic approach to hip-hop. The group features live instrumentation and a sound that ranges from old-school funk to jazz to soul to just about anything the members feel like trying. Lately the group has taken a darker turn in its sound, and Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson has said that it reflects the current political tone in America. Dark or not, The Roots still know how to work a crowd, and, with their incredible live show, this will be a great way to begin the series.

Continuing in the hip-hop spirit, New York veterans De La Soul will grace the stage July 24. De La Soul took the hip-hop community by storm in 1989 when it released 3 Feet High and Rising. It was hailed as a masterpiece of its time because of the clever wordplay and the group’s peaceful nature. Never one to shy away and often speaking out against the violent nature of hip-hop, De La Soul continues to be one of the most respected and influential hip-hop groups of the past 20 years. The group still tours quite often, but it’s a rare occasion you’ll be able to catch a full three hours in the cool summertime breeze, so make sure you get there early.

July 19 Flogging MollyGreat Saltair

Irish folk-punks Flogging Molly return to Utah this summer in support of their newest album Float, and this might be your last chance to see them before they become everyone’s favorite band. Flogging Molly’s popularity continues to soar, thanks to the hard work and dedication the members have to solid song writing, constant touring and putting on a damn fun live show. Flogging Molly played Salt Lake City a little more than seven months ago at The Venue, a space perfectly suited to their style and energy. Now, thanks to a little help from the Billboard Top 200 chart, the band has moved up a notch and hits the much bigger lakeside venue the Great Saltair. The sight lines might not be as obstructed, and there will definitely be more room to escape the hundreds of drunk faux-Irish people singing along to words they learned on the way to the show, but this is just another step on the way to the giant monotony of the E Center. Catch the band soon. It might be your last chance to see it in a somewhat intimate venue.

July 29LuceroUrban Lounge (21+)

Lucero is a band that everyone should be talking about but hardly anyone has heard. Having served as the opening act for giants such as Against Me!, Lucero has more or less been living on the road for the better part of the 10 years it has been a band. Tagged with labels such as “alt-country” or “country-punk,” most people are afraid to give the band a decent chance. Once Ben Nichols’ gravely, heart-felt vocals hit your ears, it’s hard to get the song-any song-out of your head. The band likes to think of itself as the South’s answer to Bruce Springsteen, and that’s a comparison that’s not far off considering the shared musical style and lyrical content. Lucero will feel perfectly at home in the smoky dungeon that is Urban Lounge, so get those cowboy boots out of the Halloween box and mosey on down to catch the show.

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