5 Best Concerts to See in Phoenix This Week, 8/4 to 8/7
Harper Lee Amos Lee
August has begun, and with it, the countdown to the end of summer. (And there's non-literal meaning to that as well -- the Summer Ends Music Festival, which happens just after fall begins at the end of September in Tempe.) Blessed are the rains down in Phoenix this past weekend, allowing us a brief respite from triple digit highs and upper-90s lows. It's gonna get hot again this week, so distract yourself with these shows and distract yourself from the tough questions in life, such as, "why do people live in the desert?" and "is the existence of Phoenix a testament to man's conquest of nature or a disastrous symbol of man's doomed desire to master it?"
Check out our comprehensive concert listings for more options.
Due to a variety of difficulties, mainly being in Croatia, and assorted Internet issues that defeated even Skype, Steve Morse, Deep Purple's longest-serving guitar god, was recently unable to speak as planned with New Times. Still, Deep Purple's got plenty to share -- especially considering it's been around nearly 50 years. Beginning as a British psych blues acts in 1968, the sound coming off such classic albums as Shades of Deep Purple (featuring "Hush") and The Book of Taliesyn was simply stunning -- swirling, driven guitar lines hovering around primal blues structures and aggressive vocals. Today's DP is, well, different, though the recent Now What? recalls early-1970s Purple and the stomping power chord-fueled Burn and Machine Head. This era produced such mega-hits as "Smoke on the Water," "Highway Star," and "Woman from Tokyo." Live from Japan cemented the band's live intensity. Lineup changes -- notably guitarists Ritchie Blackmore, Tommy Bolin, and even Joe Satriani -- diminished the band's strength. Yet, thanks to drummer Ian Paice, early bassist Roger Glover, and the return of original vocalist Ian Gillan, the band has carried on as more than a band "covering" itself. Deep Purple remains vital and has lost none of its edge in concert. --Glenn BurnSilver
Signed to jazz-heavy Blue Note records, former elementary-school teacher Amos Lee is the Norah Jones of the folk world. And instead of rocking the piano-heavy torch songs, he falls back on stringed instruments such as guitars and ukulele. His sound is reminiscent of folkies such as Richard Swift or Elliott Smith--but with a little more warmth and a little less edge. Perfectly geared toward the 30-something set. --Brandon Ferguson