Also featuring an underlooked blues guitarist, an underrated collaboration from two old-school rappers and a bunch of bands that sound like fun. at a radio station’s indie-rock “summer camp.”
8:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7 and Friday, Aug. 8, at Showbox SoDo, 1700 First Ave. S., Seattle; $30 (360-652-0444 or www.showboxonline.com).
As recently as two years ago, no one outside Scotland had heard of Glasgow trio Chvrches, an electronic pop group formed in the wake of several less-successful rock bands. That quickly changed when it released singles like “The Mother We Share” and “Recover”—both slickly composed, instantly memorable pop songs—and it’s been touring the world ever since.
2 Lady Gaga
7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at Key Arena, 305 Harrison St., Seattle; $35–$200 (206-684-7200 or www.keyarena.com).
This concert was originally scheduled for late May, but Gaga canceled last-minute due to a bout of “severe bronchitis.” Now the pop star’s large and vocal fan contingent will get the show, sure to be elaborate and theatrical, it’s waited two months for.
3 Soulja Boy
8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at The Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., Seattle; $25 (206-441-7416 or www.thecrocodile.com). With Donte Peace, Spac3man, DJ Swervewon
DeAndre “Soulja Boy” Way was just 17 when he had a No. 1 hit: “Crank That (Soulja Boy),” a self-made rap song and dance that rode populist support to the top of the charts. Way never replicated that success, but it presaged popularity of rappers like Migos, Future and Young Thug, who also prize blunt simplicity over lyricism.
4 107.7 The End Summer Camp
12 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 9, at Marymoor Park, 6046 W. Lake Sammamish Pkwy, Redmond; $34.50 (206-205-3661 or www.concertsatmarymoor.com). With Bear Hands, Wild Cub, Skaters, Sir Sly, The Orwells, Thumpers, Bad Suns
If you’re a fan of fun. (the band, but maybe also the feeling of enjoyment), this festival is for you. Most of the bands here, excluding electro-pop headliner Phantogram, traffic in the same sort of catchy radio rock that’s just quirky enough to have the word “indie” prepended to it in a press release. Or they’re Bleachers, founded by actual fun. guitarist Jack Antonoff.
5 Run the Jewels
8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 9, at The Showbox, 1426 First Ave., Seattle; $21.50–$25 (206-628-3151 or www.showboxonline.com).
Rap, like popular music in general, puts a premium on youth. But with their Run the Jewels collaboration, Killer Mike and El-P—both talented, hardworking rappers—found new popularity as both approach 40. The duo’s eponymous album, produced by El-P, displays old-school sensibility while still sounding fresh.
6 Broken Bells
6:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 10, at The Moore, 1931 Second Ave., Seattle; $43.50 (206-467-5510 or www.stgpresents.org). With Cayucas
James Mercer (The Shins) and Brian Burton (Gnarls Barkley) teamed up as Broken Bells back in 2009, forming a project that matched Mercer’s knack for songwriting with Burton’s renowned production abilities. They revived the group this year to release sophomore album “After the Disco.”
7 Robert Cray
5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 10, at Woodland Park Zoo, 5500 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle; $24 (206-548-2500, www.zoo.org/zootunes). With Shemekia Copeland
A guitarist and songwriter with a voice as powerful as his chops, Cray has been on the summer festival circuit for years playing his brand of blues-tinged ’80s rock. He even has a crossover hit to his name—1986’s “Smoking Gun.”
8 Arctic Monkeys
7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 11 and Tuesday, Aug. 12, at The Paramount, 911 Pine St., Seattle; $39–$43 (360-467-5520 or www.stgpresents.org).
For “AM,” Arctic Monkeys’ fifth album, released in March, the band turned to R&B and hip-hop for inspiration; singer Alex Turner pointed to Aaliyah and Dr. Dre in particular. That influence shows up only intermittently in the band’s sound, still a crafty summation of the past 40-or-so years of British rock, but album closer “I Wanna Be Yours” is a veritable slow jam.
9 Counting Crows
4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 12, at Marymoor Park, 6046 W. Lake Sammamish Pkwy, Redmond; $45–$75 (206-205-3661 or www.concertsatmarymoor.com). With Toad the Wet Sprocket, Daniel and the Lion
Counting Crows lacked the bombast and immediacy of grunge, but the Berkley, Calif., band has carved out longer, more fruitful career than many of its ’90s rock contemporaries. Adam Duritz’s long-running rock band is touring behind “Somewhere Under Wonderland,” its first album of original material in six years.
10 Lynyrd Skynyrd
7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 13, at Snoqualmie Casino, 37500 S.E. North Bend Way, Snoqualmie; $35–$100 (425-888-1234 or www.snocasino.com).
Though guitarist Gary Rossington is Lynyrd Skynyrd’s only remaining original member, the Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame southern rockers are touring to celebrate their 40th anniversary this summer. This is also the only show in Seattle this year where yelling “Freebird” is a somewhat logical thing to do and not a horrible joke.