At long last, summer has arrived and it’s bringing some hard rocking bands with it! From classic rock to death metal and everything in between, New Yorkers have a full roster of concerts ahead of them for the first month of warm weather. In addition to a mega-festival on Randall’s Island, you can also celebrate the opening of the outdoor amphitheaters at Jones Beach and PNC Arts Center, including a straight week of hard rocking shows at the Beach. Following are the concerts on the New York Hard Rock Examiner’s radar for June 2013:
Saturday, June 1: Lez Zeppelin at Highline Ballroom. There is nothing in the world like this all-girl tribute to Zeppelin. The fantastic (and beautiful) musicians in Lez Zep rock with a raw fury and genuine love for the music, and consistently offer up sets full of radio favorites as well as deeper cuts. Read my review of their October show at the Highline right here, but with tickets fully sold out you’re either already going, or straight out of luck.
Friday-Sunday, June 7-9: Governor’s Ball at Randall’s Island. It’s the first festival of summer, and headliners Kings of Leon, Kanye West, and Guns n’ f*ckin’ Roses will be joined by dozens of other acts and vendors. For full details check out NY Concert Examiner Lorraine Schwartz’s breakdowns and set times here, and for my last review of Guns n’ Roses in New York click here. Tickets are all but sold out, so hit up Craigslist and Stubhub to get inside.
Friday, June 7: Willie Nelson at NYCB Theatre in Westbury. Heavy metal it’s not, but check out this hard rocking country legend right here in Long Island. The roundhouse theater in Westbury is a great venue without a single bad seat in the house, and the outdoor smoking deck might just come in handy for Willie’s fellow activists. Buy fast because few tickets are left at this point.
Saturday & Monday, June 8 & 10: Paul McCartney at Barclay’s Center. Need I say more? Almost every ticket sold out instantly, but some of the priciest tickets ($200-300) are still available for both shows. Keep an eye on Stubhub for this one, as prices may drop the day of the show as scalpers try to dump their inventory.
Monday – Wednesday, June 10-12 (6 shows): Zakk Wylde at Iridium Jazz Club. It’s an acoustic evening with metal’s godfather of guitarists, and Zakk is playing 2 shows each night at this intimate Times Square venue. Billed as An Evening With, Monday night’s shows feature Zakk together with the Les Paul Trio, and the other nights are Zakk all on his own. Black Label Society fans absolutely cannot miss this opportunity to see their idol playing his mellower songs up close and personal. The 10pm shows seem to have sold out, but as of today tickets are still available for the 7pm sets.
Tuesday, June 11: Killswitch Engage at Best Buy Theater. The KSE fanbase has loved the return of original singer Jesse Leach, and you can expect the underground Best Buy to be a wild storm of mosh pits, crowdsurfers, and full-fledged headbangers from front to back. The show is completely sold out, but tickets are going for about $65 on Stubhub so don’t count yourself out just yet.
Friday, June 14: Lamb of God at House of Blues Atlantic City. Normally South Jersey is out of range for this New Yorker, but with only a handful of true metal shows in the city this month, it’s worth hauling down to Atlantic City for arguably the best heavy band out there these days. A Friday show also brings the added value of a weekend of beaches and gambling at the Jersey version of Vegas. My review of Lamb of God’s November show at Roseland Ballroom can be read here.
Friday, June 14: Appetite For Destruction at Rocks Off Cruises. Another week, another Guns n’ Roses tribute welcomes you to the jungle. If you didn’t get your fix of Mr. Brownstone in Brooklyn last month (my review here) or catch Axl at the Governor’s Ball, hop a boat for a three hour cruise with these Gn’R fanatics and enjoy the view from the Hudson set to a soundtrack of Destruction!
Thursday-Friday, June 20-21: Rancid at Terminal 5. Normally punk music is not on this Hard Rock Examiner’s agenda, but Rancid is legendary and their 2-night stand at Terminal 5 is sure to be one of the most insane shows of the month. Friday night has completely sold out, but you still have a chance to get into the Thursday night show while tickets last. Be warned; T5 gets very hot when it’s full, so dress for sweat.
Saturday, June 22: Fleetwood Mac at Jones Beach. It’s not the first show of the year at the just-revamped Jones Beach (that honor goes to Pitbull & Ke$ha), but it’s the first 2013 rock show! What better way to kick off the outdoor concert season than with these classic rock stalwarts? The cheap seats are already gone, but if you’re willing to shell out $120 then you’re in for a killer concert. You can also get in via Stubhub for around face value too.
Sunday, June 23: Rush at Jones Beach. Unlike the previous day’s show, a paltry $50 will get you inside the show with these Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famers. There’s no better place to see these classic rockers than outdoors with the ocean to your back, and Rush puts on a show like no other band. Read my last review of Rush’s Time Machine tour by clicking here.
Tuesday, June 25: Drowning Pool at The Paramount. Jump back indoors for this weeknight show and let the bodies hit the floor! Drowning Pool killed it at Irving Plaza last month, and they should do even better headlining at the much larger Paramount. New singer Jason Morena sounds as good as singers #1-3, and rocks a badass mohawk to boot. My last live review of Drowning Pool here.
Tuesday-Wednesday, June 25-26: Dave Matthews at Jones Beach. Daaaaave! It’s the first hippy-friendly show of the season (just wait til Phish comes around next month), and Mr. Matthews is playing two nights in a row at the outdoor amphitheater. Plenty of tickets are still available for both nights, so why not go twice?
Thursday, June 27: Heart at Jones Beach. Fresh out of the Hall of Fame, Heart shows no sign of slowing down their incessant rocking and rolling and there’s no better place to see this show than the open-air Jones Beach. Known for busting out Zeppelin covers in addition to their own giant radio hits, this bill is beyond amazing thanks to opener Jason Bonham, with genuine Zeppelin pedigree of his own. Read my last review of Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience here, and stay tuned for my first ever review of Heart!
Saturday, June 29: Kid Rock at PNC Art Center. The rapper/rocker/country star has broken new ground with his “$20 all tickets” summer tour. Naturally, tickets for every seat in the house (which come out to $30 with fees) sold out right away, but you can still grab the general admission lawn tickets at face value on Livenation.com, or even below that already-cheap price if you check out Stubhub. Outdoor summer concerts simply don’t get much better (or cheaper) than this!
Saturday, June 29: Courtney Love at The Paramount. Yes, you read that right. The reclusive, sometimes psycho frontwoman of Hole is headlining a solo show in Long Island, and whatever happens inside the Paramount is likely to be awesome. Tickets start at a very affordable $35.
Thursday, June 20: LL Cool J at Roseland Ballroom. Like punk, rap is not typically covered by this writer, but Mr. Cool J is one of the best in the game and worthy of your worship. He will be joined by Ice Cube and Public Enemy for an absolutely killer lineup, and Roseland is always a great venue for a high energy show. Open-minded metal fans should highly consider seeing what a quality rap show is like.
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