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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, September 3, 2010 - Volume 38 Issue 36
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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Scissor Sisters, Dierks Bentley, Arcade Fire top September concerts

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

It's back to school for some and back to the ticket counter for the rest of us who follow great live shows. The month of September has an abundance of anticipated performances, and here are eight that emerge from the pack.

Bumbershoot Music
and Arts Festival
September 4-6
Seattle Center

Mary J. Blige is the biggest reason to attend Bumbershoot, now celebrating its 40th year anniversary as Seattle's premiere arts festival. While the overall lineup is below par compared to 2008 and 2009's rosters - when Franz Ferdinand, Beck, Death Cab for Cutie, and Katy Perry thrilled mainstage audiences - you'll still be treated to great performances this time by Neko Case, Angelique Kidjo, and local outfit The Moondoggies.

Smashing Pumpkins
September 10
The Showbox SoDo

If only a handful of rock bands mattered in the early '90s, Smashing Pumpkins - along with Nirvana and R.E.M. - would be among them. Billy Corgan is not a genius, but he is a compelling songwriter and vocalist, as both a solo artist and collaborative member of this Grammy-winning quartet. Can the group restore its one-time dominance in a new decade? Probably not, but that doesn't erase the fact that they're one of the most influential alternative acts ever.

The National
September 11
Marymoor Park

One of indie music's most hyped bands is The National, whose 2007 album The Boxer landed on multiple year-end critics' lists but struggled in its bid for mainstream attention. High Violet, the Brooklyn act's follow-up release, again has only managed to excite the media and maybe a diehard KEXP listener here and there. Regardless of success level, The National will prove their worth at Marymoor Park.

Scissor Sisters
September 15
The Showbox SoDo

If you ask me - and I'm glad you did - Scissor Sisters own one of 2010's strongest releases with Night Work, a grittier and more developed effort than the group's previous two albums combined. Lead singer and former Seattle resident Jake Shears penned most of the CD's material from his late-night exploits in Berlin - he nails the ambiance of the city's dingy, promiscuous dive bars on "Sex and Violence" and "Invisible Light."

Dierks Bentley
September 18
Puyallup Fair

No one should be surprised that Dierks Bentley nabbed an Album of the Year nomination by the Country Music Association (CMA). His venture to authentic bluegrass, Up on the Ridge, is among the best-reviewed CDs of the entire year and is well on its way to a Grammy nod later in 2010. Fans get the opportunity to hear these songs live when Bentley plucks at the Puyallup Fair in mid-September, as part of a charity event that benefits Seattle Children's Hospital - yee-haw to that!

Adam Lambert
September 21
Puyallup Fair

The eyeliner-dabbed reality series star-turned-recording artist had no problem filling The Showbox SoDo to capacity in July, but can he draw his loyal faithful to the land of battered corndogs and funnel cakes? Probably, and Lambert will give them a concert that's nothing short of glam, glitter, and gushy pop. Here's hoping he omits his wonky version of Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love."

The xx
September 25
Paramount Theatre

The frontrunner for the 2010 Mercury Music Prize, a prestigious award handed out by a British panel of artists and media, is the self-titled debut by South London's ambitious newbies, The xx. From the opening chords of "Intro," you just know this album is going to be a cut above the rest. The band sold out its previous concert in Seattle at The Showbox SoDo - hence the bigger venue. Don't miss The xx, they're on a bullet train to rock stardom.

Arcade Fire
September 29
Key Arena

Though not as brilliant as Neon Bible (SGN's Album of the Year, 2007) or even 2004's Funeral, this year's release by Arcade Fire, The Suburbs, is another example of their superiority in the alternative music scene. On a sad note, the days of seeing them live in intimate theaters are gone - for now - as they've upgraded to sports arenas, which stands to diminish the experience just a bit.

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Five acts to catch at Bumbershoot
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Asian Pacific Islander Pageant returns to Seattle
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Cho-Dependent a hilarious night of comedy and music
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Drag superstar Varla Jean Merman spends an evening in Seattle
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A Dyke About Town: John Hiatt rocks Zoo Tunes
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Bizet's Carmen gives tired opera another chance
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Rufus Wainwright gives emotional, complex performance
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Tripping the light fantastic: An interview with Burn the Floor's Gary Wright
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Fantasy Swan crashes into reality
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Bloody Machete goes back to the grindhouse
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The Last Exorcism doesn't close the deal
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Scissor Sisters, Dierks Bentley, Arcade Fire top September concerts
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Q-Scopes by Jack Fertig
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Moondoggies look forward to playing Bumbershoot
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Northwest News
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Letters
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Scissor Sisters interview with Seattle Gay News next week
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