Friday, December 6
X and the Blasters
Over the past few years, this veteran outfit hunkered down and made the Observatory their home for holiday shows. It's been more than three decades since the quartet released their seminal album, Los Angeles, but the band retains its propensity for delivering the raw intensity reflected on that record. Despite band members occasionally venturing off and working on respective solo careers and an assortment of other side projects, when the punk icons join forces, it brings audiences back to the glory days of the genre. Though there are always rumblings of new material, it's unlikely of ever materializing, so seeing X live at this point in their career will have to do–and we'll happily take the opportunity.(Daniel Kohn)
Irvine Barclay Theatre
Orange County's premiere gay men's chorus comes 'round to put the “merry and gay” back into our holiday season. For this annual Christmas concert, they take on the beloved original animated feature, . The debut Disney film's musical score was so enjoyed by moviegoers, became the first picture to ever release a soundtrack. Come join Men Alive for a spectacular selection of festive songs accompanyed by a dashing huntsman, several adorable dwarfs, the narcissistic wicked queen, and, of course, our fair maiden. We look forward to Men Alive's concerts every year–and this one promises to be absolutely magical (and fabulous).
House of Blues Anaheim
With a sound straight out of the emerald isle, but birthed in the hardcore scene of Boston, Street Dogs-fronted by Mike McClogan of Dropkick–rock a high-energy brand of punk rock that's heavy on the political commentary with an extra dash of wit. They'll be joined by The Old Firm Casuals. (Brandon Ferguson)
Still hanging on and dominating after two decades in the rough-and-tumble rap game, Mr. Shawn Carter did it by becoming one of the best performers in all of music. It's still up for debate if Hova is really a modern-day Pablo Picasso, as he claims on “Picasso Baby,” but with his breath control, his hits, and his mere presence he can take command of a stage sans hype man for hours.The 34-date trek, including a Honda Center date on Friday, is in support of this summer's Magna Carta Holy Grail — a blockbuster album featuring collaborations with Justin Timberlake, Frank Ocean, Rick Ross, and his wife, Beyonce. (Reed Fischer)
Saturday, December 7
Chicano Soul Legends
Chicano soul music is very much integrated in Orange County's music history, as much as it is in the blood of the people who grew up listening to it. So one can imagine how deeply important and stellar the Chicano Soul Legends show at the Honda Center is to the legions of fans. Groups like Thee Midniters, Thee Dupremes and Rene y Rene didn't just produce music that was famous, but iconic. You won't want to miss this show, as it will surely reignite sun-kissed memories and beautiful feelings of love and warmth.