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28 Essential Acts to Catch on Tour This Summer and Fall

These are the can't-miss shows we'll be attending as touring returns to the US

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Illustration by Steven Fiche

    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

    Green Day Performing Live

    Green Day, photo by Heather Kaplan

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    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?

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Death Cab For Cutie

    Death Cab For Cutie

    Death Cab for Cutie, photo by Philip Cosores

    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.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Bleachers

    Bleachers Riot Fest

    Bleachers, photo by Heather Kaplan

    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.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    My Morning Jacket

    My Morning Jacket Performing

    My Morning Jacket, photo by Philip Cosores

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    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.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Dead & Company

    Dead And Company 2018

    Dead and Company, photo by Ben Kaye

    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.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Sylvan Esso

    Sylvan Esso Performing Live

    Sylvan Esso, photo by Philip Cosores

    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.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Sleater-Kinney

    Sleater-Kinney Performing Live

    Sleater-Kinney, photo by Nina Corcoran

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    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.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Corey Taylor

    Corey Taylor on Return of Live Music

    Corey Taylor, photo by Antonio Marino Jr.

    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.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Manchester Orchestra

    Manchester Orchestra Performing Live

    Manchester Orchestra, photo by Ben Kaye

    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.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Tame Impala

    Tame Impala Bonnaroo

    Tame Impala, photo by Ben Kaye

    True to (psychedelic) form, Tame Impala is ready to take audiences on a trip. Phase I Rushium® Trials, the North American leg of the rescheduled tour, is the next iteration of neon-soaked performance from Kevin Parker. Appropriately, the imagery around the long-delayed tour revolves around the idea of a clinical trial, making audiences happy test subjects for whatever adventures are to come.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    J. Cole and 21 Savage

    J Cole Performing Live

    J. Cole, photo by Ben Kaye

    J. Cole is coming into his own. With the release of The Off Season, the self-proclaimed middle child of rap has seemed to find his niche, continuing to create characteristically thoughtful tracks with a greater sense of confidence. This marks J. Cole’s first headlining tour since 2018’s KOD Tour, and having 21 Savage along for the ride as a co-headliner makes this teamup a can’t-miss event for summer and fall.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Lil Baby

    Lil Baby Performing Live

    Lil Baby, photo by Nick Langlois

    It’s been a big year for Lil Baby, who has remained in high demand featuring on tracks for J. Cole, Drake, and Young Thug. With the upcoming Back Outside Tour, though, the rapper will be the one in the spotlight. After the release of joint effort The Voice of the Heroes with Lil Durk, this tour brings the two rappers together for 23 cities, including stops in New Orleans, Los Angeles, and Brooklyn.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Glass Animals

    Glass Animals

    Glass Animals, photo by Philip Cosores

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    Glass Animals, the British electronic-pop band out of Oxford, are ready to welcome audiences to Dreamland. Following the release of their 2020 album of the same name, the group will be brought back to the States and into Canada for a sprawling 41 stops throughout 2021 and 2022. A central theme for Glass Animals has always been friendship — the group was formed by childhood friends, after all — and this tour will offer the reconnection and camaraderie that has been sorely missed.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Spoon

    Spoon Performing Live

    Spoon, photo by Amy Price

    In 2020, Spoon teamed up with Matador Records to reissue much of their back catalog, and after the many iterations and member changes the indie-rock group has undergone since its 1993 inception, it’s the perfect time to revisit. Throughout the 16-date tour, Spoon will also be meeting up with St. Vincent. While there have been hints and rumblings of a 2021 album, nothing has been confirmed just yet — but September isn’t here just yet.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Bright Eyes

    Conor Oberst Performing Live

    Conor Oberst, photo by Ben Kaye

    After almost a decade, Bright Eyes are hitting the road again. The indie-rockers, led by singer-songwriter and guitarist Conor Oberst, will be ending their extended hiatus with a bang — they’ll intermittently be joined by Japanese Breakfast and Lucy Dacus. As a reunion of sorts for the core members of Bright Eyes, who haven’t played a full show together since November 2011, this tour is a can’t-miss for anyone that has followed the group throughout the years.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Perfume Genius

    Perfume Genius Performing Live

    Perfume Genius, photo by Lior Phillips

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    Adept at both a perfectly quippy tweet and a heart-wrenching, intimate piece of music, Perfume Genius understands how to create art in an Extremely Online time. After his fantastic late 2020 release, Set My Heart On Fire Immediately, the indie artist solidified himself as an artist with a singular and critical voice — while also never losing the playful persona he’s curated over the years. In a tumultuous year, Perfume Genius shows that it’s possible to do it all: create, care, and use a platform for good. Over the nine-city tour, he’ll give the chance to show it all up close and personal, too.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Foo Fighters

    Foo Fighters Performing Live

    Foo Fighters, photo by Philip Cosores

    It seems like Dave Grohl never quite leaves the news circuit — most recently, in an eyebrow-raising conversation with Pharrell, he dubbed himself “the most basic f**king drummer” and mentioned times in his career where he feels his musical choices were particularly derivative. Despite such a confession, it’s impossible to deny the space the Foo Fighters have carved out in the modern musical landscape. The group’s emotional full capacity show at Madison Square Garden on June 21st makes this tour especially essential to consider.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    St. Vincent

    St Vincent Lollapalooza

    St. Vincent, photo by Heather Kaplan

    St. Vincent continues to be one of the most interesting artists working right now. When it comes to her genre-bending repertoire of music (and an upcoming foray into film), St. Vincent knows how to capture attention and raise eyebrows, and the 23-stop tour in support of her Daddy’s Home album will give the singer-songwriter-guitarist extraordinaire plenty of room to play in every sense. As an artist with an intentionally exaggerated persona, live performances will give audiences a glimpse behind the curtain.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Modest Mouse

    Modest Mouse Performing Live

    Modest Mouse, photo by Ben Kaye

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    For a group with as solid of a place in the music lexicon as Modest Mouse, it’s fairly surprising to remember that their 2021 release, The Golden Casket, is the band’s first in six years. The rock group is set to kick off the 40-stop tour with an appearance at Chicago’s Lollapalooza. Overall, the members of Modest Mouse (led by frontman Isaac Brock) tend to take their time — the same attention and care put into new music releases will undoubtedly be applied to planning out a tour set, too.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    The Doobie Brothers

    Doobie Brothers performing live

    John Cowan of the Doobie Brothers, photo by Donald Kravitz via Getty Images

    Somehow, the 1970s were almost a half-century ago, meaning the Doobie Brothers are embarking on a 50th Anniversary tour this summer. The mammoth 49-stop journey will be broken up into two North American legs — get ready to “listen to the music” starting August 22nd. Notably, this tour will see former singer/keyboardist (and recent Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee!) Michael McDonald rejoining the group.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Harry Styles

    Harry Styles Performs

    Harry Styles, photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for SiriusXM

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    In the time since Harry Styles has waited to reschedule his “Love On Tour,” the renaissance man has started shooting two films and taken home three Grammy awards. Getting back to business, though, he’ll be hitting the road August 14th supported by Jenny Lewis. Orville Peck and Madison Cunningham are slated to join for the close of the North American leg at Madison Square Garden. This tour, the first time Styles has performed for full crowds in almost three years, will mark debut performances of many tracks from 2019’s critically acclaimed Fine Line album.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Yo La Tengo

    Yo La Tengo

    Yo La Tengo, photo by Colin McLaughlin

    It might seem like a bit of a cliche at this point to characterize recent albums as a chance for artists to reconnect with their art and produce some of the most vulnerable and stripped-down pieces of work in their respective careers, but Yo La Tengo exemplified this concept extremely well. With the release of a surprise instrumental EP, We Have Amnesia Sometimes, and another EP just a few months later, Sleepless Night, the beloved trio epitomized this idea of getting back to roots. Tour stops in intimate mid-sized venues throughout the US and the UK just feel correct.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Phish

    Phish at Bonnaroo 2019

    Phish, photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for Bonnaroo Arts And Music Festival

    Phish are back on the road later in July, with a 35-date outing running through Halloween. They’ll be hitting up Nashville, Atlantic City, Lake Tahoe, and San Francisco, as well as making rare stops in Sacramento and Phoenix. If you need to brush up on your Phish before then, check out their Sigma Oasis album, which was recorded live to tape at Trey Anastasio’s barn last fall and released early on in the pandemic.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Alanis Morrissette, Garbage and Liz Phair

    Alanis Morissette

    Alanis Morissette, photo by Debi Del Grande

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    Talk about a power trio. In celebration of the 25th anniversary of Alanis Morissette’s classic album Jagged Little Pill, she’ll be heading out with fellow rock icons Garbage and Liz Phair. Garbage’s Shirley Manson teased the rescheduled trek in an interview with Kyle Meredith back in June, and while we won’t spoil what they have in store, this is one you won’t want to sleep on.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    King Crimson with Zappa Band

    King Crimson 2021

    King Crimson, photo courtesy of band

    Like most acts, King Crimson’s 2020 tour was delayed due to the pandemic, but they’re finally heading out on a lengthy North American run. The second leg of the tour is billed as Music Is Our Friend, and will feature support from The Zappa Band (former touring members of Frank Zappa‘s backing band).

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    GZA, Raekwon, and Ghostface Killah

    GZA Riot Fest

    GZA, photo by Debi Del Grande

    This joint tour from Wu Tang royalty, dubbed the 3 Chambers Tour, has already been named a critical tour to catch from Raekwon himself. “This shit will be bananas!!!!” he promised in a press release — and there’s no reason not to believe him. With plenty of material from solo albums and chances to reunite on tracks, the members of the legendary hip-hop group will be touching down in 25 cities from October to December.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    Real Estate

    Real Estate

    Real Estate, photo by Philip Cosores

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    The indie-rock act out of New Jersey always tends to leave a warm haze behind with their music, making them the perfect act for the chill of late fall. Throughout November, Real Estate will be trekking through New England and into the midwest — plus, every ticket supports REVERB, a nonprofit organization connecting music with environmental action. Help contribute to reducing concert and tour footprints while enjoying some great tunes along the way.

    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

    PVRIS

    PVRIS

    PVRIS, photo by Philip Cosores

    Originally scheduled to tour as openers for mother-to-be Halsey, PVRIS are embarking on an August and September jaunt of their own. The rock duo released their third studio album, Use Me, in August of 2020, and celebrated with a more recent live stream event in April of 2021. This tour marks the first time the group has had a chance to truly share their EDM and dance-infused latest with audiences.

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    Get tickets via Ticketmaster or the secondary market.

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