Thursday, April 26, 2018
Music News, Concert Reviews

SoundCheck: Totally '90s Under the Sun Tour among top live music picks

Under the Sun Tour

With Blues Traveler, Sugar Ray, Smash Mouth, Uncle Kracker (pictured clockwise from top left)

Details: Sunday 7 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $49.50-$150. (727) 791-7400.

Hairapalooza, Replay Across America and the Summerland Tour have all turned back the bay area's musical clocks in recent weeks, and now another mini-festival of epically nostalgic proportions gets its moment. The Under The Sun Tour is the brainchild of Sugar Ray frontman Mark McGrath, and where Summerland is focused on both the past and future of its acts, McGrath and company have no qualms about rehashing the hits. Don't surprised to hear a deep cut at this show, but do expect to be Walkin' on the Sun with Smash Mouth, singing Follow Me with Uncle Kracker and playing the heck out of your air harmonica when Blues Traveler works through Run-Around.

Nate Najar Quartet CD release

Details: Saturday 8 p.m. Palladium Theater, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $18-$28. (727) 822-3590.

Nate Najar's latest album, Aquarela do Brazil ("Watercolor of Brazil" in Portuguese), has been in the hands of European fans since late March, and while the 10-track collection of energetic (Canto De Ossanha), saxed-up (Liga) and elastic (Chovendo No Roseira) fingerstyle guitar tunes has been stateside since for the better part of a month, it still hasn't been properly welcomed. That changes Saturday when Najar is joined by vibraphone player Chuck Redd (who appeared on Aquarela) plus bassist Alejandro Arenas and drummer Mark Feinman to officially release the LP to the community that Najar calls home.

Curren$y

With Wave Chapelle

Details: Friday 7 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $30-$50. (813) 248-9500.

It's been about 15 months since Shante Franklin visited Ybor City for an appearance at the Amphitheatre, and while you may not have done much since then, the 33-year-old N'awlins MC better known as Curren$y has been characteristically busy. The last two months saw him release 10 music videos from his Drive-In Theatre mixtape while teasing fans with news that his new album, Pilot Talk 3, would be on the way soon. His laid-back, witty delivery hit peak potency on past tracks like Jet Life and Capitol, but you can't have all hits when you release material as frequently as Curren$y does. Wave Chapelle, the fast-rising 20-year-old Milwaukee rapper responsible for last year's wildly popular mixtape It'll All Make Sense Soon, opens the show.

Yes

Details: Saturday 8 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. $49.50-$125.50. (727) 892-5767.

Even with enough former members to play a full-court basketball game, U.K. prog-rock outfit Yes are indisputable legends. Founded in 1968, the group broke through in 1971 and 1972 with the release of two LPs, Fragile and Close to the Edge, which featured fantastically bombastic arrangements marked by spastic bass, flamboyant keys and unabashedly strummed acoustic arrangements. What set the band apart, however, was a keen knack to plaster all of it with melodies that even the simplest laymen could get behind. The band will work through the entirety of those two formative albums at this St. Petersburg stop, and if songs like And You and I or Long Distance Runaround are just too nerdy for you, the band has promised that the encore will feature hits (fingers crossed for Owner of a Lonely Heart) as well as material from brand-new album Heaven and Earth.

Zomboy

With Nerd Rage, Winta, Mr. Saturn, Tommy Rize

Details: Friday 10 p.m. Amphitheatre, 1609 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $15. (813) 873-8368.

Joshua Mellody, a.k.a. Zomboy, should be at peak excitement when he arrives to headline another installment of the Amphitheatre's # (Pound) Fridays. The 25-year-old sound engineer turned EDM producer is set to release his debut album The Outbreak on Monday, and if the crowds packing clubs on his extensive U.S. tour are any indication, then the kid is in for a long and successful ride. Outbreak cuts like Beast in the Belly are marked with typical dubstep drops and tempos, but Zomboy also peppers the tunes with floor-shaking trap breaks while collaborating with rappers like Armanni Reign on the album's title track.

Dirty Heads and Pepper

With Aer, Katastro

Details: Friday 7 p.m. Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Sold out. (727) 565-0550.

On Friday night, two of reggae rock's brightest stars combine for a co-headlining show. Huntington Beach, Calif., outfit Dirty Heads have taken some slack for leaning away from reggae in favor of a more alternative sound on new LP Sound of Change, but older fan favorites like Spread Too Thin and Lay Me Down will be there for the purists. Pepper, a San Diego-by-way-of-Hawaii trio, have pretty much stayed true to the sound they've cultivated over six albums. While laid-back, groove-heavy offerings like Stone Love and Give it Up are about a decade old, they still hit like they were written yesterday.

Times correspondent Ray Roa can be reached at suburbanapologist.com.

   
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