We’re ready for some rock and roll to slide back into the landscape. We’re talking crunchy guitars, throbbing baselines, and a hot mess of a singer onstage. We’ll be getting a lot of that in September, as bands head out on their fall tours (and everyone ends up touring through the Midwest in the Fall). Consider this a warm-up to Rocktober (get ready, that will be a big one this year). Here are some of the best shows to catch in Lawrence in September as we eagerly await leather jacket weather:
September 13 | Liberty Hall
This will definitely be one of those very “Lawrence” shows for the old fogies in the emo scene.
Earlier this year, Sunny Day Real Estate announced a reunion tour that included a Lawrence stop with one of our greatest musical exports, The Appleseed Cast. This is the first time in 12 years Sunny Day Real Estate is getting back together. But if you’re from Lawrence, you’ll be just as excited to see post-rockers The Appleseed Cast on the Liberty Hall stage. That sound will be tremendous.
RIYL: Cursive, The Get Up Kids, The Casket Lottery
photo by Fally Afani
September 16 | The Replay
This is pretty much a holy trinity of lineups as far as local rock shows go. LYXE is bursting into September with a new release showcasing their rhythmic and melodic throwback to new wave, while The Creepy Jingles are no strangers to melting faces in dark nightclubs. LYD is a newer performer and songwriter on the scene who we’re told sounds a lot like Gwen Stefani (but like, back when she was in cool ska in the 90s). Together, we’ll get one of those quintessential late-night rock shows in a dive bar (a trait we’ve come to know from Lawrence). This diverse lineup is a fantastic introduction to students in the area who just moved in and are looking to find their grooves.
RIYL: The Sluts, White Lung, Garage Rock
September 19 | The Bottleneck
It’s time to pack up and head to the Church of Rock and Roll. Foxy Shazam is no stranger to outlandish stage shows. Frontman Eric Nally reads like he was grown in a lab, born to bring rock and roll to the masses. The acrobatic, obnoxious, and over-the-top vocalist with pipes made-of-gold is known to steal the spotlight (folks unfamiliar with his work will automatically recognize him as the screeching rocker in Macklemore’s “Downtown”). Foxy Shazam disbanded in 2014 and returned with a slightly new lineup just in time for the pandemic to hit, so the tour is long overdue. Expect a lot of pent-up energy to be released at the show.
RIYL: Drugs and Attics, On-stage antics, The Darkness
photo by Fally Afani
September 20 | The Bottleneck
Earlier this year, Kiss the Tiger rolled through the Bottleneck with piano madman Low Cut Connie. They left such an impression that they were easily invited back, this time headlining their own show. The Minnesota rockers are known for warming up a sleepy crowd in no time at all and keeping their spry momentum going strong for the duration of the set.
RIYL: Shannon and the Clams, Low Cut Connie, Sarah Potenza, singers who beat the shit out of tambourines while they bounce around
September 22 | The Granada
Are you high, or are you just listening to the new Of Montreal album?
Oddball act and frequent tour friend to Lawrence, Of Montreal is no stranger to the weird, but the new album goes far into the experimental realm to the point where we’re not sure if we just took psychedelics. Freewave Lucifer F<ck F^ck F>ck is the 18th (18th!!) album from Barnes and co. In the past, they’ve been known for their theatrics: wacky costumes, playing out a boxing match on stage, a few naughty props… it’s all there. Some shows had been a bit more subdued in recent years, but this album could be a return to the avant-garde.
RIYL: Tripping, hypnotizing times, The Flaming Lips
September 25 | The Bottleneck
The Velveteers are one of those bands that give us rock and roll in its purest form. With the recently released Nightmare Daydream, we get all the goods from this three-piece. Songs that are heavy on the reverb, slow sludgey number, and a few shredders as well. This is going to be a very fashionable show. Think a gothier version of Jack White’s demographic. The songs are perfectly produced and will be replicated with an exciting energy onstage that’s not to be missed.
RIYL: Jack White, The Black Mariah Theater
Other events to keep on your radar:
September 2 | The Replay
September 12 | The Bottleneck
September 21 | The Granada
September 23 | The Replay
September 27 | Liberty Hall
September 30 | The Replay
September 30 | The Granada