This week in Tampa: Nine Inch Nails, Linkin Park, Soundgarden, Thirty Seconds to Mars, The Offspring and more
There is so much hard rock, metal and punk coming to town this week, you guys. On Saturday, you've got Linkin Park, Thirty Seconds to Mars and AFI in Tampa, while Taking Back Sunday performs across town. On Monday it's Nine Inch Nails with Soundgarden and the Dillinger Escape Plan. And next Thursday, it's the Offspring (above) with Pennywise, Bad Religion and Stiff Little Fingers.
And still, that barely scratches the surface of a stacked week in local music. Ray Roa is here to walk you through the rest of it, including Crosby, Stills and Nash, Booker T. Jones, the Bar-Kays, Big Data, Miniature Tigers, Big Smo, the Bellamy Brothers, Foxing, Ellis Paul, Feed Me, Kishi Bashi, Black Milk and a special musical appearance by former Jackass star Bam Margera...
Nine Inch Nails and Soundgarden
With The Dillinger Escape Plan
MONDAY 7 p.m. MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $29.50-$99.50. (813) 740-2446.
March 8, 1994, was a watershed day in alternative music. That Tuesday saw the release of Nine Inch Nails’ The Downward Spiral and Soundgarden’s Superunknown, two of the era’s defining collections of heavy, heady music — Rolling Stone ranked both among the top 40 albums of the ’90s. Twenty years later, it’s only fitting that the two bands unite for a co-headlining tour celebrating their entire catalog. Nine Inch Nails has been plenty active over the past two decades, with Trent Reznor winning an Oscar for his score to The Social Network, and NIN’s latest album Hesitation Marks earning great reviews. Soundgarden, meanwhile, went on hiatus for more than a decade before reuniting in 2010 and recording a new album, the equally well-received King Animal. But the Seattle quartet (minus drummer Matt Cameron, who’s spending this summer touring with his other band, Pearl Jam) just released a 20-year anniversary edition of Superunknown, so there’s no doubt you’ll hear classics like Spoonman and Black Hole Sun at this one. — Jay Cridlin
Linkin Park and Thirty Seconds to Mars
SATURDAY 6:30 p.m. George M. Steinbrenner Field, 3802 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Tampa. $40-$115. (813) 875-7753.
After nearly two decades, Tampa’s George M. Steinbrenner Field is getting back into the concert game in a big, big way. Thanks to hits like Crawling, In The End and One Step Closer, Linkin Park was already one of the most bankable and celebrated acts to emerge from the wreckage of the genre known as nu metal. But for this tour, they’re bringing along newly minted Oscar winner Jared Leto and Thirty Seconds to Mars. The acclaim Leto received for Dallas Buyers Club mirrors his everlasting popularity in Tampa Bay, where Thirty Seconds to Mars are frequent performers, most recently as the headliners of last year’s 97X Next Big Thing. Since winning that little golden guy in March, Leto has kept re-routing Hollywood’s spotlight onto his band, both through a documentary, Artifact, and further touring on their 2013 album Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams. The Tampa Yankees don’t have a home game until Wednesday — with all this action, here’s hoping the field will be ready by then. — Jay Cridlin
Memphis Music Fest
With Booker T. Jones, The Bar-Kays, William Bell
FRIDAY 8 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S., St. Petersburg. $39-$69. (727) 892-5767.
Good things are inevitable when a high school job finds you clocking in and out at Stax Records. That’s what happened to a 16-year-old Memphis record store rat named Booker T. Jones, who parlayed his ability to play sax, oboe and trombone into a stint leading the famed record label’s house band. Jones really shines on the Hammond B3 organ, though (he learned to play at age 10 after using cached paper route money to pay for lessons), and his band the MG’s backed the likes of Otis Redding and Albert King. His 1962 hit Green Onions still garners cheers from crowds, and the 69-year-old Grammy-winner’s latest LP, last year’s Sound The Alarm, finds him joining modern-day throwbacks like Gary Clark Jr. and Mayer Hawthorne to make his return to Stax a joyous one.
Crosby, Stills and Nash
SATURDAY 7:30 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $63.75-$103.75. (727) 791-7400.
Crosby, Stills and Nash are experiencing a quirky, YouTube-generation renaissance right now. Something tells us that the vaunted folkies didn’t need that Fallon appearance (where Jimmy joined CSN as “Neil Young”) or the Weird Al Carry On parody (Mission Statement) to stay relevant, anyway. The boys (plus a five-piece backing band) will play new solo material at this show alongside a nearly half-century’s worth of guitar prowess, lyrical wisdom and bone-chilling harmonies. If that’s still not enough, pre-game by heading to the Barnes & Noble at 23654 U.S. 19 N in Clearwater, where Graham Nash will be signing copies of his autobiography Wild Tales: A Rock & Roll Life starting at noon.
Taking Back Sunday
SATURDAY 8:30 p.m. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. Free with park admission. 1-888-800-5447.
To say that the programming at Busch Gardens’ Summer Nights concert series is eclectic is an understatement. The theme park has already hosted pop starlets (ZZ Ward, Cher Lloyd, Bridgit Mendler), reggaeton stars (Zion y Lennox), and at least one Grammy-winning salsa orchestra (El Gran Combo). On Saturday, the clock turns back to a time when skinny jeans looked best on a boy dramatically swinging his mic on stage like some kind of emo Indiana Jones cracking the whip. That’s right, Taking Back Sunday will be on hand to work through songs from a new album, Happiness Is, and we’re willing to bet that frontman Adam Lazzara and company will be more than happy to work though early 2000s staples like Cute Without The “E” (Cut From The Team) and There’s No “I” In Team. Boys like these were a dime a dozen a decade ago, but the fact that Taking Back Sunday are still around is a testament to the fact they’re so much more than a past summer fling.
With The Hotelier, Dirty Talk, ADJY, Snacking
SUNDAY 7 p.m. Epic Problem, 4215 E Columbus Dr., Tampa. $10. (813) 382-3477.
This will be the last time you get to see Foxing in such close quarters. The St. Louis-based quintet recently signed to NYC imprint Triple Crown Records, but it’s not necessarily the label’s roster (Bad Books; Into It. Over It.; O’Brother) that is most impressive. It’s Triple Crown’s remastering of Foxing’s debut, The Albatross, that means the most. The 10-track offering was already emotionally elaborate thanks to painful, brutally undisguised co-writing from Conor Murphy and Josh Coll, but the sonic reworking extracted the best parts of the album (distant piano and incandescent slide on Rory, mathy riffs and Postal Service-esque programming on The Medic) and put them front and center, making for a cohesive 36 minutes that just might end up being one of the best albums of the year.
F---face Unstoppable (feat. Bam Margera)
With Polkadot Cadaver
MONDAY 6 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $20-$25. (813) 248-9500.
Post-Jackass stardom was never guaranteed for the likes of Johnny Knoxville, Wee Man or Steve-O, but the MTV reality stars certainly did everything they could to hold on. They’ve been mostly successful, and another one of the show’s pranksters, Bam Margera, brings his latest, most ambitious (or ludicrous) project straight into the heart of Ybor City. The band’s name is literally unprintable, and if the moniker isn’t crass enough, then listen to the lyrics on songs like Bend My D--- and Beer, Drugs & B----es to be even more appalled. Topics like self-sodomy and unprotected sex are just the tip of the iceberg, and while more prudish and discerning ears might shove pencils into themselves after hearing a song like Little D--- Let Me Cheat, the joke might actually be on us. The over-the-top metal riffs and mindless dubstep womps are so bad that they can’t possibly be intended to be anything more than sonic shenanigans.
TUESDAY 7 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. Free with ticket. (813) 248-9500.
Tampa Bay radio’s alternative rock stronghold 97X has been spreading a whole lot of free show love all over The ’Burg lately. On Tuesday, the station is teaming up with Bud Light to bring some of that treatment across the bridge by welcoming Brooklyn pop-ducer Alan Wikis to play his Tampa debut in front of a crowd that won’t have to pay to get in the door. Wikis, the maestro of electro duo Big Data, is responsible for what is currently one of rock radio’s most popular songs, Dangerous, and while Big Data only has four tracks from a debut EP to its name, Wikis will probably pull out more than a few remixes to keep the crowd moving. Tampa’s own Greymarket open, and tickets are available at several ticket drops. More information is at 97Xonline.com.
With The Griswolds, Finish Ticket, Goodnight Neverland
TUESDAY 7 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. $11-$14. (813) 241-8600.
Miniature Tigers’ 2008 track Cannibal Queen is one of the most understated statements in pop music. The 2-1/2-minute song is an homage to the harmonies and melodies of Brian Wilson, riddled with fuzzy synth interludes plus all the grandiose pomp of Phil Spector. We’re not necessarily saying that Tigers frontman Charlie Brand is an heir apparent to those legends, but his four-piece collection of albums is riddled with the kind of witty banter and orchestral detail that Wilson and Spector would be proud of. More recent efforts like 2012’s Mia Pharaoh lean heavily on the synth sounds radio favors today, and that’s a good thing. Used To Be The S--- from this year’s Cruel Runnings LP is a just-over-the-top goulash of blue-eyed soul and bright piano stabs that could be the soundtrack to a 1970s dancefloor timewarp.
With Pennywise, Bad Religion, Stiff Little Fingers
THURSDAY 6:30 p.m. MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $25-$64.85. (813) 740-2446.
A gallon of gas would’ve set you back a little more than $1 back in 1994. A lot has changed since then. Worry not, however, because a trio of bands on the Summer Nationals Tour are still intact enough to hit the road and pay homage to SoCal punk rock of decades past. Greg Graffin might be the last remaining original member of Bad Religion, Pennywise’s sting might have faded over the course of nine albums, and The Offspring’s Dexter Holland might only be in headlines thanks to the $800K he still owes on one of his Cessnas (so not punk rock), but songs like Bro Hymn, Blenderhead, and Self Esteem are still rough and real enough to prove that these kids are still alright. If anyone should need a little authoritative spanking, then 1980s Irish punk legends Stiff Little Fingers will be on hand to deliver.
Lullwater Fri. With Another Lost Year, Blacklite District. Time. Octave, 661 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. (727) 826-0820.
The Supervillans Fri. With The Crazy Carls. 8 p.m. Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $5. (727) 565-0550.
Wolf-Face & Caffiends (7-inch release) Fri. With Sunshine State, Early Forms. 9 p.m. New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. $8. (813) 248-4969.
Cope Fri. With Applebutter Express, Stick Martin, Fall On Purpose, more. 8 p.m. (Free Henne Boyz video shoot at 11 a.m.) The Brass Mug, 1450 Skipper Road, Tampa. $10 and up. (813) 972-8152.
The Lauren Mitchell Band Fri. 9 p.m. Ricky P’s Orleans Bistro, 1113 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $5. (727) 821-4061.
Matt Woods Fri. With Caleb Caudle. 10 p.m. Ella’s Americana Folk Art Café, 5119 N Nebraska, Ave., Tampa, Free. (813) 234-1000.
Patel Conservatory Rock School Blowout Sat. Noon. Shimberg Playhouse at David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $5. (813) 229-7827.
Central Florida Bluegrass Association’s Night To Howl: Benefit for Animal Coalition Tampa Sat. With The Little Girl & The Dreadful Snakes, Trail Dogs. 5 p.m. Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $10 minimum suggested donation. (813) 971-0666.
Ellis Paul Sat. 6 p.m. Hideaway Café, 1756 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $25. (727) 644-7895.
Bellamy Brothers Sat. 6 p.m. Dallas Bull, 3322 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $10. (813) 987-2855.
Luxury Mane (album release) Sat. With Empire Cinema, Article 47. 8 p.m. Venture Compound, 2621 Fairfield Ave. S, St. Petersburg. Donations accepted. (901) 619-1519.
Big Smo Sat. With Redneck Gypsies, Demun Jones. 8 p.m Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $10-$25. (727) 565-0550.
Richard Gilewitz Sat. 8 p.m. Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $18-$25. (727) 822-3590.
Hex Hector Sat. With DJ Escape. 9 p.m. G Bar, 1401 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $5. (813) 247-1019.
Chris Henry and the Hardcore Grass Sun. 3 p.m. Unitarian Universalist Church of Tampa, 11400 Morris Bridge Road, Tampa. $15-$20. (813) 988-8188.
Feed Me Sun. With Teeth. 7 p.m. Ritz Ybor, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $18-$30. (813) 247-2555.
Black Milk Sun. With Cambatta, MC Fanotch, Mike Mass, AMiAM, Rude 100, Lord Khep, OP Supa. 7 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $10 and up. (813) 248-9500.
Ol’ Dirty Sundays (Feat. DJ Spinna) Sun. With DJ Casper, DJ Lesage. 10 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. Free. (813) 241-8600.
Kishi Bashi Tues. With Tall Tall Trees, Sunbears!. 8 p.m. New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. $12-$14. (813) 248-4969.
-- Ray Roa, tbt*