With Foreigner and Night Ranger
Details: Saturday 7 p.m., $19-$135. 1-800-ASK-GARY Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. ticketmaster.com.
Their early hits — Wheel in Sky, Lights, Any Way You Want It — form the backbone of an entire generation's musical knowledge. And thanks to TV's Glee and its spine-tingling take on the band's signature tune, Don't Stop Believin', their music has been reborn for the coming generation. Add to that a new studio album and a young singing prodigy from the Philippines on lead microphone and you're honestly going to say you're not going to see Journey on Saturday?
Sure, Arnel Pineda has taken over the frontman duties for the long-retired Steve Perry, but your ears won't know the difference. And Journey's new album, Eclipse, gives the San Fran band a good reason to tour again — and provides Tampa Bay another chance to celebrate its immense catalog. (Please, no sobbing during Open Arms or Faithfully.)
But if you're still not sold, the boys are bringing along Foreigner and Night Ranger (left) to share the stage. Urgent and Sister Christian, too?!? That's a lot of '80s goodness for one show, but we have faith you can squeeze into an old concert jersey and those Jordache jeans and make it a night to remember.
Steve Spears, Times staff writer and '80s guru
With Young the Giant
Details: Sunday 8 p.m. 1-800-ASK-GARY Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $25-$79.90. (813) 740-2446.
If you loved the funky, cosmic chaos of Incubus' early albums S.C.I.E.N.C.E. and Fungus Amongus, new disc If Not Now, When? might sound a bit adult contemporary by comparison. But if you've come to appreciate Incubus' more sentimental side (Wish You Were Here, Drive), this tour will work just fine. With harmonious rock songs and a hippie spirit, this Calabasas, Calif., band has succeeded where so many have failed over the years. (Remember Kaddisfly? Me neither.) In fact, Billboard calls Incubus (not Green Day or Nickelback) the "most consistently successful modern rock band of this decade." Opener Young the Giant, the fledgling Orange County band that rocked the MTV VMAs, is having a breakout summer. Its bright, energetic anthems shouldn't have any trouble filling out the Gary, particularly when singer Sameer Gadhia shouts that deliriously determined chorus, "My body tells me no, but I won't quit, because I want more."
With the Weeks, Pretty Voices
Details: Saturday 8 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $12-$15. (813) 241-8600.
Normally, it would say something about a band if its best-known musical contribution came on another band's album. But when that "other" band happens to be the epochal Nirvana, exceptions can be made. Just 138 days before his death, cult fan Kurt Cobain asked the Meat Puppets' Kirkwood brothers to join him for Plateau, Oh Me and Lake of Fire (all Meat Puppets originals) during Nirvana's famed MTV Unplugged show. The latter tune would turn out especially heart-wrenching thanks to Cobain's haunting warble. After polling fans on MySpace about a reunion show, the shaggy alt-rock crew regrouped in '07 for more languid fun.
With Fake Problems, Guy Harvey
Details: Wednesday 7:30 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $10-$12. (813) 241-8600.
Like the East Coast nephews of Weezer or Pavement, or the buttoned-down brothers of Vampire Weekend, Surfer Blood combines fuzzy, irreverent garage with power-pop, surf rock and Afrobeat. When Surfer Blood's Swim made Pitchfork's 100 best songs list in 2009, the group became buzzworthy way beyond its South Florida stomping grounds.
Times correspondent Carole Liparoto can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.