By Michael Christopher
For Digital First Media
Welcome to ‘Seven in Seven,’ where each Friday we’ll be taking a look at shows coming to the region over the next week. Whether your musical tastes are rock and roll, jazz, heavy metal, singer-songwriter or indie, there’ll always be something to check out in the coming days.
Here are seven of the best for the week beginning March 25:
Bonnie Raitt – March 25 at Verizon Hall
With Dig In Deep, her twentieth album, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Bonnie Raitt comes out swinging for the follow-up to 2012’s triumphant Slipstream. The new record illustrates the delicate balance of consistency and risk-taking that has defined Raitt’s remarkable career for more than 45 years. What’s most telling is Raitt’s excitement about , having spent two years on the road for its predecessor, has hopped right back out onstage to play this one live with barely a moment’s rest.
The Expendables – March 25 at The Theatre of Living Arts
The Expendables enjoyed a laid-back lifestyle growing up in Santa Cruz, California, with the storybook ideal that comes with the region; surfing, skating, partying, and playing music were commonplace. Since 1997, he band has staked their claim in the California surf rock genre by headlining venues from coast to coast. Blending reggae, punk rock, and 80s style dueling guitar solos, The Expendables have made heads turn and floors shake for years, led by a catalog that’s now seven albums deep.
Meat Loaf – March 26 at Sands Bethlehem Event Center
When you’ve put out a trilogy of albums, two of them smash hits, and another widely panned by critics and fans alike? You just keep moving forward and hope to get lucky again at some point. That’s what Meat Loaf is doing, banking on album number 13 to be another charm when it drops in September. Dubbed Braver Than We Are, the record was completed last month, and now Mr. Loaf is out on the road for a string of dates to keep his chops sharp. Expect the requisite hits along with some tried and true Bat Out of Hell and Back Into Hell selections.
Vance Joy – March 28 at The Electric Factory
Vance Joy has an original voice which at first he kept to himself – good thing that didn’t last long. Feeding on a diet of The Pogues, Paul Kelly, and whatever else was playing, Joy cut his teeth performing at open mike nights in Melbourne, Australia, ending up honing a blend of folk music with pop influences. His songs capture the familiar pulse of everyday experiences in a unique and celebratory manner, with lyrics that will reach out and grab you like the cinematic storytelling of “Riptide” and the ode to lost love “Georgia.”
Like Moths to Flames – March 29 The Voltage Lounge
Having set the underground music scene ablaze in just a few short years, Like Moths to Flames owe it to a decidedly unique, fresh and original take on an otherwise well-worn genre in metalcore. Stomping sing-a-long anthems, pounding chaos and crystal clear and often soaring shiny pop dance together freely within the band’s sound that calls to mind luminaries like Bring Me The Horizon, Devil Wears Prada and Miss May I. Those are some of the only other bands doing it at the same level of intensity, precision and passion as Like Moths To Flames, who have taken their rightful place alongside their scene counterparts while steadily maneuvering a career that is uniquely their own.
Savages – March 31 at Union Transfer
How do you describe London bred indie rock outfit Savages? It’s about change and the power to change; a metamorphosis and evolution. It’s about sticking to your guns and toughing it out. It’s about now, not tomorrow. It’s about recognizing your potential. It’s about self-doubt and inaction. It’s about finding the poetry and avoiding the cliché. It’s about being the solution, not the problem. It’s about showing weakness to be strong. It’s about digging through your dirt to look for diamonds. It’s about claiming your right to think unacceptable thoughts.
It’s about boredom and the things we do to drive it away. It’s about being on your own so you can be with people. It’s about the music and the message: together, one and the same. It’s about bass, guitars, drums, and vocals. It’s about opening-out and never, ever dying. But most of all it’s about love, every kind of love. Love is the answer. It’s also the main theme throughout their second album, Adore Life, which came out earlier this year. At press time tickets were still available – don’t expect that to last until the day of show though.
Unwritten Law – March 31 at Underground Arts
Even if you have all their albums and can sing all their songs, you don’t know Unwritten Law until you’ve seen them live. In their efforts to push their creativity and songwriting strengths, the band recorded for a number of different labels, including three of the four major label groups and a few indies. But there has been one constant, and that’s the commitment to punk rock, be it skate punk, power or pop punk. Very few thrive in the live setting like this Southern California act.