It’s really happening, folks: tour calendars are filling up in the latter half of 2021.
After the extended hiatus of live music over the COVID-19 pandemic, summer and fall concerts have started to return to the United States.
Whether you’re looking to hit up a stadium, arena, club or any venue in between, here are Consequence‘s essential picks for the tours you won’t want to miss as you ease back in.
Green Day, Fall Out Boy, and Weezer
Sending Green Day, Fall Out Boy, and Weezer on the road together is a Hella Mega tour indeed. The long-postponed trek throughout North America and Europe will finally arrive on the heels of new music from all three groups — Weezer recently made headlines for track “Tell Me What You Want” in which the band calls out Pitchfork (among other critics). What better catharsis for both fans and these bands than to get together?
Death Cab For Cutie
Despite the intimacy offered by a livestream (which Death Cab For Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard offered in the form of a daily concert series at the height of the pandemic), there’s nothing like live performance. The indie-rock band seems thrilled to be hitting the road again, but this tour provides an even larger opportunity for connection: one dollar from each presale ticket purchased through the site will be donated to Aurora Commons, a space for unhoused neighbors to rest, eat, and connect to resources in Illinois.
Because Jack Antonoff clearly isn’t busy enough between writing and producing with longtime collaborators Taylor Swift and Lorde, he’s also packed his schedule with new music for Bleachers. Having recently entered a Bruce Springsteen ‘80s era, Bleachers is prepped to hit mid-sized venues starting in September (with a few festival stops along the way). As an artist continuing to solidify himself as a consistent part of pop music, Jack Antonoff will get the chance to share new tunes of his own.
My Morning Jacket
After an intermittent hiatus and scattered shows throughout 2018 and 2019, My Morning Jacket is reenergized. With the somewhat unexpectedly extended time off of 2020 and early 2021, frontman Jim James has reassembled the group to share tracks from their latest effort, The Waterfall II. In a 2020 episode of Kyle Meredith with…, James spoke extensively about the larger impact of the past year, particularly looking at police brutality and gun violence. With a renewed sense of vigor, he’s ready to kick off live shows again.
Dead & Company
Back in May when Dead & Company announced their tour, our own Wren Graves wrote that the true confirmation of nature healing would be seeing members of the Grateful Dead back on the road. Dead & Company, a reimagined legacy act, brings original Grateful Dead members Bob Weir (guitar), Mickey Hart (drums), and Bill Kreutzmann (drums) together with next generation musicians John Mayer (guitar), Oteil Burbridge (bass), and Jeff Chimenti (keyboard). While the group did have a 2020 tour planned, the 2021 version looks a bit different — but despite some of the changes, the stellar musicians involved have remained the same.
As a synth-pop duo, Sylvan Esso often make music that demands movement. “Numb,” the most recent single release off of last year’s Free Love, was accompanied by a music video that marked group member Amelia Meath’s directorial debut (alongside choreographer Jasmine Albuquerque). The video is a tightly controlled choreography, extremely intimate, and can only conjure the feeling of being in a crowd again. Whether movement will factor heavily into Sylvan Esso’s live performance stages has yet to be determined, but fans will have this fall to find out.
Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker, the two artists behind Sleater-Kinney, just passed a major milestone: their most recent full-length album, Path Of Wellness, is the duo’s tenth release together. The self-produced work joins the already robust lexicon from the Portland-based artists, and Sleater-Kinney will be departing the West Coast for sixteen stops around the country. All at outdoor venues, the shows promise to be a breath of fresh air in every sense.
Corey Taylor, frontman of Slipknot, can’t seem to get enough of being back on tour. One of the first artists to hit the road in a major way this year, Taylor has already completed a month-long run, and the late summer will see the vocalist out for ten more dates ahead of a full Slipknot tour. After the release of a genre-spanning 2020 solo album, CMFT, Taylor is clearly itching to connect with fans. The mix of smaller venues and festival dates throughout July and August offer the perfect opportunity for him to do just that.
The members of Manchester Orchestra are no strangers to the road. Over nearly two decades now, the alternative rock group has been performing in concert halls and, of course, at an annual Thanksgiving festival in Atlanta called The Stuffing. This year, The Stuffing will fall right in the middle of a tour in which audiences will have the chance to hear tracks from the group’s excellent 2021 The Million Masks of God LP.