Live Music Picks: June 22-28 | Music Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Live Music Picks: June 22-28 

Coin, Grits Green, Vans Warped Tour, Visigoth and more.

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FRIDAY 6/23
Coin, Arizona
On their second album, How Will You Know If You Never Try? (Columbia), Nashville indie pop band Coin sounds squeaky clean and produced—which is what they're goin' for, so that's fine. They're splittin' the difference between retro-'80s pop of bands like the relentlessly fun Walk the Moon and the breathless, vanilla Coldplay. It's surprisingly palatable, netting out to something fun but not entirely mindless. New Jersey trio Arizona is of a similar bent, but with Tyler Glenn-style pop sensibilities, so their debut album Gallery (Atlantic) sounds a bit slicker. Since they'd chalked up more than 9 million unique listeners on Spotify before the record even hit shelves, one wonders what the new high score will be once the summer is over. The Complex, 536 W. 100 South, 7 p.m., $17.50-$19.50, all ages, thecomplexslc.com

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FRIDAY and SATURDAY 6/23-24
Grits Green, Earthworm
Rha'gene Beal, frontdude of Ogden hip-hop group Grits Green, says the band has done "a lot of growing up" since releasing their debut album, Imagination in Motion some three years ago. It's not surprising, then, that they characterize the songs on their new EP, Water (gritsgreen.com), as deep cuts that cut deep, "just referring to the groove," Beal says, since they're newer tunes that reflect how the band's sound has evolved since 2014's Imagination in Motion. Beal's and Porter Dalton's bars remain clever, humorous and often profound, and the group is tighter than ever, providing tight curls for the emcees' respective flows. "We've implemented more elements of our stage show," Beal says, adding that they'll be joined by a horn section at their release party this Friday. Produced by bassist Greg Shaw with Mike Sasich at Man vs. Music, it sounds clean—every bit as good as Motion, which was produced by Dave Aron (Sublime, Snoop Dogg, Prince)—and fresh, like a band just surfacing from a baptism. Lighthouse Lounge, 130 25th St., Ogden, Friday, 8:30 p.m., $5, lighthouseogden.com; Utah Arts Festival (Amphitheater Stage), Library Square, 200 E. 400 South, Saturday, 8:20 p.m., $6-$35, uaf.org

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SATURDAY 6/24
Vans Warped Tour feat. The Dickies, CKY, GWAR, The Adolescents, Alestorm
The Vans Warped Tour probably looked greasy to certain old-school punk rockers back in 1995, but there's no disputing what it did for punk rock. Not to mention hip-hop, country, rockabilly, ska, surf rock, reggae, alternative rock and metal, when it diversified in its first decade. You used to see lineups that included tons of real punk acts like T.S.O.L, Fear, Bad Religion, Social Distortion and NOFX, but also Ice-T, The Specials, Jurassic 5, Beck, Kool Keith—I could go on. The point is, Warped had a focus but also expanded the horizons of its audience. Then the MySpace emo/screamo scene happened, somebody smelled money and the variety faded. In recent years, someone realized that there's nostalgia scratch to be had, and they've started bringing some of those "classic" bands back to the main tour. This year, that means O.G. punks like The Dickies, along with prog-punks CKY and ultra-shock rock group GWAR—ironically, the victims of God's greatest decapitation strike, when frontbeast Dave Brockie died in 2014. Here's hoping Warped warps full-circle back to its old self. Utah State Fair Park, 155 N. 1000 West, 11 a.m., $29-$35 presale, $50 day of show, all ages, smithstix.com

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SATURDAY 6/24
Visigoth, Eternal Champion, Deathblow
How cool is it to have a local band representing on the venerable Metal Blade Records label? Well, if they sucked, it wouldn't be that great. But Jake Rogers and crew's epic power metal is ... epic. So, too, is the "pre-Christian epic fantasy metal" of Eternal Champion out of Austin, Texas. The Armor of Ire (eternalchampion.bandcamp.com) derives thematically from Michael Moorcock's high fantasy series—and the songs, rife with tales of heroism and trebly riffs, sound the way that a Frank Frazetta Heavy Metal magazine cover looks: surreal, but like they could suck you into battle at any moment. Local openers Deathblow loom large in a different way, calling back to the '80s heyday of thrash, but making their brand chunkier and meaner. Makes you wonder if there's a Metal Blade deal in their own future. Metro Music Hall, 615 W. 100 South, 8 p.m., free, 21+, metromusichall.com

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SUNDAY 6/25
Zapp
Old-school funk of the late '70s and early- to mid-'80s is perfect for any time of day (listen to The Gap Band's "Early in the Morning"), any season (see if Lakeside's "Fantastic Voyage" doesn't perk up a gloomy winter day), any setting (nothing sets off a funeral like the Dazz Band's "Joystick"). It's just irresistible fun—a reminder of when popular music wasn't so focus-grouped and commodified. It was just about a good time, and that's it. Zapp, perhaps better known as Zapp & Roger, is a band of Troutman brothers from Cincinnati. Due to an association with George "Dr. Funkenstein" Clinton, they initially sounded like an almost "Son of P-Funk" deal on tracks like "More Bounce to the Ounce." On their second album, they moved toward a heavier electronic influence, with more of Roger Troutman's talkbox, which became their signature on songs like "So Ruff, So Tuff" and "Computer Love." Sadly, Roger was gunned down in 1999 by brother Larry in a business-related murder-suicide. Now led by Lester and Terry Troutman, Zapp proves it can still give fans a charge. Liquid Joe's, 1249 E. 3300 South, noon, $25 presale, $30 day of show, all ages, liquidjoes.net

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TUESDAY 6/27
REO Speedwagon, Styx, Don Felder
REO Speedwagon is the dark horse of classic rock bands. Although they ruled FM radio from the early '70s through the early '90s, their name comes up far less frequently than, say, those of Journey, Boston and their co-headliners, Styx. And yet, if you go see them on Tuesday, you'll know every song from early corkers like "Ridin' the Storm Out" through power-anthems such as "Keep On Loving You" and ballads like "Can't Fight This Feeling." As for Styx, they're just as good today as when they were huge—better, actually, with their current lineup. The only thing you'll miss are the songs "Babe" and "Mr. Roboto." That's a lot to miss, you might say, but it's understandable that current singer/keyboardist Lawrence Gowan wouldn't wanna sing a song about former vocalist Dennis DeYoung's wife. (But, where's "Moonlight Desires," Larry?) And with DeYoung being an alleged douchebag, you can't blame Styx for dropping his awesome—but gimmicky—other trademark song from their set. Finally, Don Felder. He's the dark horse of the Eagles. He contributed way more to the band than Don Henley or the late Glenn Frey want to admit. But he's out playing almost exclusively Eagles tunes, including a fairly decent version of "Hotel California" that sometimes features members of Styx. He even whips out "Heavy Metal (Takin' a Ride)" from the cult animated film Heavy Metal. For fans of the trippy flick, that's an even bigger treat than all three acts' hits combined. (Randy Harward) Usana Amphitheatre, 5150 S. Upper Ridge Road (6055 West), 7 p.m., $27.50-$99.50, all ages, usana-amp.com

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