Inside D.C. entertainment

Weekend Shows: Ave Atque Vale

June 27, 2012 - 10:31 AM
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Josh Ritter (Photo: nffcnnr via Flickr)

This is most likely my last concert preview column here on Instead of coming up with a specific theme for this week, I've decided just to list a bunch of shows that I think are going to be awesome. There's no real thread connecting these shows other than my own personal tastes. Thanks for reading these columns for all these months, and hope to see you all out at a show soon!

Brandi Carlile and Josh Ritter
Thursday, June 28 at Wolf Trap, $40 (pavilion) or $30 (lawn)

Josh Ritter and Brandi Carlile are two of my favorite Americana singer-songwriters, and it's certainly awesome to see them both at the same show. Ritter hails from Idaho and has been releasing albums since the late 90s; I still remember a moment at a sold-out Birchmere show in 2006 when he performed his song "Lawrence, KS" acoustically and off-microphone, and the entire audience stayed completely silent. Carlile is younger than Ritter, but she's released some outstanding albums, including her latest, the country-infused "Bear Creek". I've missed her every time she's come through this area, and I'm pretty stoked to see this show.

Margot MacDonald
Friday, June 29 at Lubber Run Amphitheater, FREE!

If you've been reading these columns for a while, you know that I love supporting local bands, I love seeing music outdoors, and I especially love free shows-- and this concert combines all three! The four-decade-old Lubber Run Amphitheater was shut down for a few years while Arlington County estimated it would cost $3.5 million to renovate. Several citizens formed the Lubber Run Amphitheater Foundation and worked with the County to get a few improvements made at a fraction of the estimated cost, so that the Amphitheater could re-open last year. They've got another great schedule this summer, with bands on Fridays, Saturdays, and the occasional Sunday.

Iron Maiden and Alice Cooper
Saturday, June 30 at Jiffy Lube Live, $31-$92.50

This show is pricey, but c'mon, it's Iron Maiden! I'm not sure how much needs to be said about this show and these bands, but here's something to consider: since Iron Maiden hasn't had a new album out since 2010, the setlist here is likely to be a "greatest hits" set, rather than a set full of new songs that nobody really cares about. This tour started last week in North Carolina, and setlists for the shows so far seem to support my theory. Can I play with madness, indeed!

Black Clouds
Sunday, July 1 at the Black Cat Backstage, $8

Local band Black Clouds includes members of the late indie/ambient band Solar Powered Sun Destroyer, which broke up in May 2011. I saw Black Clouds back in March, opening for the French shoegaze/black-metal band Alcest, and their post-rock ambience fit nicely on that bill. They've been running a "name-your-own-price" deal on their album Everything Is Not Going To Be OK on their Bandcamp page, so you can check them out before heading out to this show.

These and other show listings can be found on ShowListDC.

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