The Five Best Concerts in O.C. This Week
Monday, September 17
Martin Sanchez (Residency)
Martin Sanchez is an absolutely manic rapper (and guitarist!) who firehoses his verses and then dives into autotune for his choruses, while his pals Company provide live instrumentation for his beats. Do they do a balls-out cover of "Sabotage"? Oh, yes they do, and that Beastie Boys live-and-unchained vibe is a pretty good indicator of what Martin and Company are going for. The result is something that you could maybe put on an alt-hop label like Mush, if it was a hard track, or you could maybe put on the radio if it was one of the sweeter ones. As September's resident, this aspiring genre polymath has plenty of chances to show you both. -- Chris Ziegler
Tuesday, September 18
Fox Theater Pomona
While the majority of the world hasn't heard from too much from The Used in a cool minute, Bert McCracken and company are poised to snag back some of the fans that flitted away along with screamo postcore's popularity (though a solid niche of die-hard fans remain as ferocious as ever). Admittedly, 2009's Artwork is the group's least-favored album, and damn their previous label for mucking around with it too much. But this year saw a little of that old maniacal light come back to their collective eyes with the release of Vulnerable, their fifth studio album and the first to surrender complete creative control in far too long. Take a trip back to the millennium as The Used play the Fox with special guests Twin Atlantic and Stars in Stereo.
2Chainz, the heavy-handed support on songs like Nicki Minaj's "Beez in the Trap" and Kanye West's "Mercy" probably thinks that changing his name in 2011 was the best career move he ever made (Tity Boy? Yuck.) His recently released video for the sleazy, amazing single "Birthday Song" (featuring West) nixes the usual bling and pomp in favor of some good, wholesome trashiness--strippers, family members and dead-eyed clowns partying hard in a lower-class neighborhood. The teens saw him perform on last week's VMA's with Lil Wayne but us big kids already know--2 Chainz is coming to the Glass House for a very anticipated solo show. He usually supports the biggest names in hip-hop--but now the spotlight is all his. -- Erin DeWitt
Thursday, September 20
Andre Watts Plays Brahms
Segerstrom Center for the Arts
The Pacific Symphony begins their season with a concert from esteemed classical pianist André Watts. Since his 1963 televised performance of the Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat at a Young People's Concert, Watts' career has climbed a steady incline ever since. Now, nearly 50 years after that initial debut of astonishing talent and grace, he continues to tour--but now mentors young musicians as a professor at Indiana University, where he also holds the Jack I. and Dora B. Hamlin Endowed Chair in Music. This week, Watts comes to the Segerstrom Center to perform a trio of masterful works: Strauss, Jr.'s Overture to "Die Fledermaus," Strauss' Suite from "Der Rosenkavalier," and the finale, Brahms' Piano Concerto No. 2. Pure class, all the way.--Erin DeWitt
Seeing Bay-area punk of Dead Kennedys without Jello Biafra is kind of like seeing the reformed Misfits -- it's just not quite the same when it's only Jerry Only, but that's better than nothing, right? Or is it? Jello hasn't performed with the Kennedys since the band's split in 1986, but the band's been at it anyway, recruiting three different singers while Biafra has focused on a spoken-word career, politics, hanging out with The Melvins, and ongoing drama with his former bandmates. --Melissa Fossum
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