July in Southern California usually means sweltering temperatures, longer days, and of course the endless amounts of metal shows, including many local, regional and national tours hitting the OC and surrounding areas. So whether you want to dive bar it up for some local extreme metal for less than 100 people, or rock out with 50,000 other rabid metalheads, we got you covered this month.
Glen Helen Amphitheater (San Bernardino)
Arguably one of the biggest names in the history and formation of heavy metal music, British icons Iron Maiden will bring their epic stage show and mesmerizing concert as part of The Book of Souls 2017 Tour, to San Bernardino on at the outdoor Glen Helen Amphitheater which fits tens of thousands. With Iron Maiden, expect things to be huge, in terms of amazing anthemic sing-alongs, an almost infinite level of energy and we’re guessing since it’s so close to 4th of July, some fireworks, and pyrotechnics. Iron Maiden’s career is now well into its fourth decade, and the band has a plethora of material to choose from, and live sets often show the diversity of songs, as the band performs classic hits, as well as newer songs, from the album, The Book of Souls. Also playing are American power metal band Camelot, thrash titans Exodus, and popular ghoulish rockers Ghost. The show begins at 5:00 pm, so start tailgating early!
Bad Acid Trip
Alex’s Bar (Long Beach)
Since the early 2000s, Bad Acid Trip have been wreaking havoc on the grinder and underground metal scene, in the LA area and abroad, their spastic mix of thrash, political punk, humor, grind and experimental music has earned them touring slots with System of a Down, Mars Volta, Buckethead, GWAR and Cypress Hill. With a blend of extreme grind and hints of System of a Down’s musical style, the band has been at the forefront of the underground grinder movement, using both comical and slightly political inspiration to create powerful, convulsing, fast and brutal songs that are best experienced in dive bar type venues, such as Alex’s Bar where the band will perform along with local peers in heaviness, Flatbush.
Formed as a metal/hard rock supergroup in 2011, the band features Symphony X vocalist Russell Allen, and guitarist Mike Orlando. At one time, Dream Theater drummer, Mike Portnoy was also in the band. With numerous line-up changes and other challenges faced over the years, Adrenaline Mob has persisted and is here to stay, doing what they do best, play metal and hard rock songs for fans all across the country, and the world. The band is touring in support of the new album, We The People, and will bring the hard rock experience of their show to fans at the Slidebar in Fullerton.
The Observatory (Santa Ana)
Fresh off the recent opening slot for the icon band, Tool’s only Southern California performance, The Melvins will continue on their nationwide summer tour, performing where they do their best work, headlining intimate club shows, where their music shines through and can fully penetrate the listeners’ ears and minds. Known as fathers of sludge, the band is somewhere between doom and alternative, merging the forces of grunge, punk, and metal all into a messy amalgam of music that is raw and powerful. The band features original, founding member guitarist and singer Buzz Osbourne, as well as longtime drummer Dale Crover and bassist Steven McDonald of Red Kross.
The Tiki Bar (Costa Mesa)
As part of a limited engagement for Southern California in 2017, Portland, Oregon-based stoner metal band Lord Dying will usher their blending of pot smoke, and massive doom laden riffs, for fans in Costa Mesa with a special exclusive performance at the Tikki Bar. At this show, fans will get a chance to hear and witness the slow, murky and loud songs that give Lord Dying its signature sound. Be sure to bring your earplugs, and don’t forget your weed either.
Flotsom and Jetsom
Malones (Santa Ana)
As part of the ’80s thrash metal scene in Phoenix, Arizona, Flotsam, and Jetsam have undergone numerous lineup changes over the decades, with vocalist Eric Knutson, remaining as the sole original member. At one time, the band featured Metallica’s second bassist, Jason Newsted, after original bassist Cliff Burton was killed in 1986. With over a dozen studio albums, the band will have tons of songs to choose from for this concert in Santa Ana at Malone’s. Opening support comes from local epic thrash metal warriors, Exmortus.
The Observatory (Santa Ana)
OK so this isn’t exactly a metal show, but so what? Just because this festival will contain a majority of punk bands, doesn’t mean there won’t be anything for metal heads. For instance, you can catch old school punk/oi bands like Peter & the Test Tube Babies, Special Duties, Blanks 77, and The Virus, but there are other reasons to come too. Examples include hardcore heroes Ill Repute, local LA/OC bands like The Voids, DFL, or San Diego hardcore punkers Battalion of Saints. Of course, if you need your metal fix, you can check out Portland’s thrash metal punks Toxic Holocaust, or better, Old school Venice crossover band Excel. All in all, be ready for an abundance of circle pits.