Ah, summer. So many shows, so little time, such a finite budget. Where to go? What to do? Relax, we've got the solution: a little quiz to help you decipher which shows are best for your particular breed of music fan. It's like those online quizzes that tell you which color, supervillain or Mad Men cast member you are—only on paper! So retro!
Without further ado . . .
1. You're spending some quality time alone with your sound system on a Sunday afternoon. What's playing?
A) Your iTunes is on shuffle. The Bee Gees, Crystal Antlers and Pavarotti came up.
B) Archers of Loaf and My Bloody Valentine—on repeat!
C) Something you downloaded from the Odd Future Tumblr site.
D) Your friend's band that's part Ariel Pink, part Echo and the Bunnymen, part Flaming Lips.
2. The last time you raised your hand at a musical event . . .
A) It was to do the versatile fist pump. You can't remember whether you were at Lightning In a Bottle, moving to the untz-untz-untz beat, or at a secret One Day As a Lion show, where you had to show solidarity against the man!
B) It was to do the metal sign. You were at the Rammstein show, and it was the first time they'd been to the U.S. in 10 years!
C) It was to do the peace sign. You were at a park, cheering on a busker.
D) You were touching Wayne Coyne's plastic bubble at the Flaming Lips show at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
3. Your car's bumper sticker says:
A) "My other car is a BMW."
B) "Pixies 2004."
C) "Obama 2008."
D) "We jam econo."
4. You buy band merchandise because . . .
A) You were drunk and accidentally spilled beer on the woman in the seat in front of you, so you had to buy her a shirt.
B) You want a version of the band shirt you had when you were 13.
C) If you bought a CD, you got a free ticket to the show.
D) You want to support indie musicians.
5. If you were in a band, you'd be . . .
A) The lead singer—all eyes should be on you!
B) The chief songwriter—so you can infuse your music with all your seminal influences. Meat Puppets, anyone?
C) The tambourine player.
D) The drummer, producer and trigger of the loop station.
6. Your favorite band's concert is sold out. What would you do to get a ticket?
A) Craigslist—in between perusing the personals.
B) Um, excuse me? I bought a ticket at the fansite presale.
C) I'd ask everyone I know if they'd barter my carwashing services for a ticket.
D) I'm sure my friends would hook me up—someone will always need a plus one.
7. At a typical show you're attending, people around you are . . .
A) Dancing and passing a spliff around.
B) Moshing with all their might.
C) Squinting to see the stage.
D) Having intense conversations about the state of the sound system.
8. Name your favorite lyric du jour:
A) "Girl, you ain't no Barbie/I see you work at Arby's" by Kreayshawn.
B) "I want to start a new life/With my valuable hunting knife" from Guided By Voices.
C) "Reach out your hand if your cup be empty/If your cup is full, may it be again" by the Grateful Dead.
D) "One day we'll all be ghosts/Trippin' around in someone else's home" from Head and the Heart.
9. Which set of bands will you be most likely to listen to?
A) Outkast, Bright Eyes, Mumford and Sons, and Ke$ha.
B) My Bloody Valentine, Nirvana, Elliott Smith and Ani DiFranco.
C) Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, Phish, Sublime, and the Doors.
D) Battles, Braids, Bon Iver and Tallest Man On Earth.
10. What are your preshow rituals?
A) A 40-ounce and a doobie! Anything to make the psychedelics rock harder.
B) Listening to whole albums of the band I'm going to hear. You never know what the band is going to play!
C) Some screaming to stretch out the vocal chords!
D) A glass of wine, a cigarette and an update on my Facebook page so everyone knows where I am.
You're the Anything Goes Concert-Goer! Whether it's a band of golfers playing experimental tubas made from plastic piping, funk purveyors at the Summer and Music festival in Long Beach, or Hall and Oates at the Hollywood Bowl, you're game for anything—you have earplugs and booze, and you're willing to travel. That said, here are four shows that will probably be perfect for you this summer:
• Journey: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, 8808 Irvine Center Dr., Irvine, (949) 855-8095; www.livenation.com/Irvine-Meadows-Verizon- Wireless-Amphitheater-tickets-Irvine/venue/73757. July 23.
• Unity Tour 2011: featuring 311 & Sublime With Rome. Verizon Wireless Amphitheater. Aug. 20.
• Reel Big Fish and Streetlight Manifesto: City National Grove of Anaheim, 2200 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, (714) 712-2700; www.thegroveofanaheim.com. July 12.
• Powerhouse 2011: featuring Ice Cube and Wiz Khalifa. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, (714) 704-2400; www.hondacenter.com. June 25.
You're the Must-See Concert-Goer! For you, anything rated five stars or any band who haven't toured in 10 years or have just reunited is the perfect ticket. Anything as long as you can tell your friends, "I was there when . . ." Here, then, are five shows you can't miss this summer.
• NKOTBSB, plus Matthew Morrison: Honda Center. July 6.
• Soundgarden: The Forum, 3900 W. Manchester Blvd., Inglewood, (310) 330-7300; www.thelaforum.com. July 22.
• FYF Fest: with the Descendents, Guided By Voices and Explosions In the Sky. First and Main, Downtown LA; fyffest.com. Sept. 3.
• Pacific Festival: OC: featuring Snoop Dogg, Cut Copy and Steve Aoki. Oak Canyon Ranch, 5305 Santiago Canyon Rd., Silverado; pacificfestival.com. Aug. 13.
• Bob Dylan: Pacific Amphitheater, 100 Fair Dr., Costa Mesa, (714) 708-1870; www.pacamp.com. July 15.
The Free Concert-Goer! You're out and about but would rather spend money on booze than tickets. After all, who wants to spend money on music when free concerts abound? You're the music industry's worst nightmare, and you're gonna bet the RIAA has your name on its list of people to sue next. Never fear—we got you a legit list of concerts to watch this summer.
• Summer and Music's Sundays In the Park With SAM: featuring Fielding, Two Guns, Sam Outlaw, Summer Darling and more. Intersection of First Street and the Promenade, Long Beach; www.summerandmusic.com. Every Sun., through Aug. 27.
• Long Beach Funk Fest: Pine Avenue, Long Beach; www.summerandmusic.com. Aug. 20.
• BuskerFest: First & Linden, East Village Arts District, Long Beach; www.summerandmusic.com. Aug. 27.
• Surfin' Sundays Concert Series: International Surfing Museum, 315 Pacific Coast Hwy., Huntington Beach; or parking lot at 411 Olive Ave., Huntington Beach; www.surfingmuseum.org. Through Sept. 25.
• Fingerprints Records in-stores: including Taking Back Sunday (June 27) and Sarah Jarosz (June 30). 420 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, (562) 433-4996; www.fingerprintsmusic.com.
The Snobby Concert-Goer! Small venues, obscure bands, a bunch of your friends at secret shows without tripping over the masses. Who cares if no one else has heard of the bands you like?
• Alkaline Trio, the Smoking Popes and Dead Country: The Glass House, 200 W. Second St., Pomona, (909) 865-3802; www.theglasshouse.us. July 23.
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• Demetri Martin: The Fox Theater Pomona, 301 S. Garey Ave., Pomona, (877) 283-6976; www.foxpomona.com. July 24.
• The 2011 Summer Partery Tour: with In Fear and Faith, Vanna, A Loss for Words, Close to Home, Ten After Two, Adestria, and Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! The Glass House. July 15.
• Puro Instinct, John Maus and Geneva Jacuzzi: Detroit Bar, 843 W. 19th St., Costa Mesa, (949) 642-0600; www.detroitbar.com. July 13.
• Queens of the Stone Age: The Fox Theater Pomona. July 25.