Brandon Flowers, Brandi Carlile, and Iron and Wine and Ben Bridwell in Pittsburgh Concerts (Mon., 7/27/15)

1) When The Killers released their debut album, Hot Fuss, in 2004, critics christened them as heirs to ‘80s arena rock, citing U2 and Bruce Springsteen as obvious forebears. Much of that praise had to do with frontman Brandon Flowers, whose tenor howl is just as rock ‘n’ roll as his name. A prolific songwriter, Flowers has released two solo albums between Killers recordings—2010’s Flamingo and 2015’s The Desired Effect. So what if the former received mixed reviews? Flowers just needed a little help from his friends. The Desired Effect features contributions from Bruce Hornsby, Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys, and some bandmates from the Killers, among others. And don’t forget producer-secret-weapon Ariel Rechtshaid, who’s worked with everyone from Bieber to Vampire Weekend. The result is a tight pop album, one which harks to everything that was great about the ‘80s. (Those synths! That Flashdance-esque typography on the cover!) While touring the album, Flowers has been joined onstage by both Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders and Bernard Sumner of New Order. Now he comes to Mr. Smalls. 8 p.m. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale. (CM) SOLD OUT.


2) There’s something incredibly compelling about Brandi Carlile‘s video for “The Eye.” Carlile and bandmates, twins Tim and Phil Hanseroth, perform the stripped-back song, featuring just guitar and three-part harmonies in a single, unmoving take, staring straight down the camera as they sing: “You can dance in a hurricane / but only if you’re standing in the eye.” It’s one of the stand-out tracks off the new album, The Firewatcher’s Daughter, along with opener “Wherever Is Your Heart,” with its belter sing-along chorus. The alt-country/folk artist’s fifth album, released in March, has had great reviews and been her most commercially successful to date, reaching No. 1 on both the US rock and folk charts. Carlile plays at Stage AE. Anderson East opens. Doors open 6 p.m. 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore. (HM)


3) Iron and Wine and Ben Bridwell of Band of Horses blew hipsters’ minds when they announced they were releasing a covers album, due July 17. Pittsburgh hipsters, get ready to have those minds shattered once more for the duo’s show at Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall. That show is one of many in support of Sing into My Mouth, its title a nod to Talking Heads’ “This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody),” one of 12 covers on the album. Other cuts include Sade’s “Bulletproof Soul” and Pete Seeger’s “Coyote, My Little Brother.” Iron and Wine is the stage name of singer-songwriter Samuel Beam. Fans include Kristen Stewart, who selected “Flightless Bird, American Mouth” to play during the prom scene in Twilight. Ben Bridwell doesn’t have a cool stage name, but he does front Band of Horses, one of the country’s most popular indie rock bands. Beam and Bridwell knew each other while growing up in South Carolina. Pre-file sharing, they would mail each other cassettes and CDs of music they liked, making this covers album something like 15 years in the making. Lydia Loveless opens. 8 p.m. 510 E 10th Ave., Munhall. (CM)

Share on Social Media

Posted in

Rick Handler

Follow Entertainment Central

Sign up for the EC Newsletter

Latest Stories

Entertainment Central Pittsburgh promo