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Friday, July 25
The Go-Gos Pacific Amphitheater What kind of introduction does one need for The Go-Gos? Their peppy, California-tinged songs made them '80s New Wave hitmakers back in the day, giving them the distinction of being the first all-female group who wrote their own songs and make a dent in the Billboard music charts with their debut album Beauty and The Beat. Not bad for a group who grew up out of the LA punk scene in the late '70s. The group have long since reunited and toured extensively, even as they continue with their separate projects. Their show tonight during the OC Fair is one of many that you won't want to miss. (Aimee Murillo)
Foreverland: A 14-Piece Tribute to Michael Jackson House of Blues Anaheim Now you can enjoy the timeless and groundbreaking Michael Jackson tracks in a format other than overplayed radio-blasting with Foreverland's unique covers of classics like, "Don't Stop Till You Get Enough," "Smooth Criminal," and everyone's favorite, "Thriller." But perhaps the most thrilling part of Foreverland's tribute show is that the King of Pop's chart-toppers are recreated by an electrifying 14-piece band. Not your typical MJ impersonators, Foreverland aims to "honor the music"--meaning no sequined gloves or elaborate ball clutching here. Just good ol' fashioned timeless pop hits performed for crowds young and old alike with an energy and enthusiasm that would make the King proud. Moonwalk, don't run, to Foreverland's show at the House of Blues tonight. (Amanda Parsons)
Saturday, July 26
Santana--The Corazon Tour Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre It's hard to believe that it's been 15 years since Carlos Santana released Supernatural, his best-selling album that went platinum a whopping 15 times over and spawned multiple top-10 hits--many of which remain fixtures on mainstream radio today. For his latest release, Corazón, and 22nd overall, Santana once again enlisted several of his famous friends to help complete the album. Contributions from singers like Gloria Estefan and Ziggy Marley, along with an appearance by Juanes, show that Santana continues to seamlessly fuse different genres to shape a sound that resonates with the masses. With more than 100 million albums sold and a slew of Grammy Awards to his name, it's safe to say that the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer's place in music history is secure. (Daniel Kohn)
Sunflower Dead The Slidebar Sunflower Dead are a metal-infused hard rock band that's hard to overlook. The quintet hits the stage in full makeup, with front man Michael Del Pizzo unleashing powerful vocals--and occasionally rocking an accordion. Their self-titled debut album consists of eleven high-impact tracks that thread in and out of metal and rock, and includes an unexpectedly wicked cover of "Every Breath You Take." Their music has shaken more than a few venue walls over the last year, landing on lineups with Hellyeah, All That Remains and Smile Empty Soul. The Long Beach-based rockers continue to ride their wave of momentum on a nationwide tour kicking off in August with Powerman 5000 and Hed PE. Considering the group's satisfyingly maniacal stage performances, this warm-up show at the Slidebar will be a lively one. (Heidi Darby)
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Sunday, July 27
Wolfmother The Observatory The band Wolfmother came from nowhere--well, Australia, which is in the time zone next to nowhere--and after a 13-year-run doing revved-up heavy rock, they broke up. But now they've suddenly come back outta nowhere again, with a new line-up based around founder/singer/guitarist Andrew Stockdale and a new Zeppelin-Sir Lord Baltimore-second Blue Cheer-style album called New Crown. It's less back to the roots and more back to the grave on this one, with no-fucking-around songs designed to deliver riffs, screams and much Sabbath-esque shreddery, particularly on songs like "Enemy is in Your Mind." (Strangely, though, the song "Tangerine Dream" actually sounds less like Tangerine Dream and more like a Sweet b-side.) Whatever you liked most about Wolfmother is still here, despite the last few tumultuous years, and it's probably even louder then it used to be. (Chris Ziegler)