Summer is in full swing: the sun is out, the shorts are on, and the drinks are flowing (purely for hydration, of course). What better way to celebrate the fun in the sun? A bunch of awesome live shows, of course! Our team selected their favorite picks below. Be sure to also swing by our (free) Boston Music Award Off the Record show that’s happening at Hojoko on July 19.

Tuesday, July 16

Carly Rae Jepsen at the House of Blues – Selected by Jared

Carly Rae Jepsen has come a long way from the catchy simplicity of 2012’s thunderous pop bombshell, “Call Me Maybe,” and if you’re looking for an excuse to sweat it out on a summer night in the city, look no further than her show on July 16th at House of Blues. Her newest album, Dedicated, is peppered with funky synth dance beats that feel both familiar (early 2000’s Britney/Christina, anyone?) and more mature than we’ve heard from Jepsen before. Her first single off the album, “Party for One,” is the exclamation point on a record full of smooth and bouncy numbers about crushes, love, and missed connections. With songs like “Now that I Found You” and “Automatically in Love,” the lyrical tone of the album offers a great excuse to go out on a limb and invite your crush to the concert—you might just find “Real Love!”

flipturn at the Great Scott – Selected by Nicole

Fernandina Beach, Fla. garage-originated band flipturn returns to Boston later this month ahead of their upcoming, second studio album, Oh to Be Young. Their packed, explosive debut, 2018’s Citrona, saw the band burst onto the underground music scene with melancholy, spacious, fiercely original takes on indie—all the while touring with the likes of Japanese Breakfast and Saint Motel, among others. flipturn will be opening for Nashville’s *repeat repeat at the Great Scott, accompanying the latter’s pop-punk sound with their own—similar to Alvvays and Rainbow Kitten Surprise.

Wednesday, July 17

Prince Daddy & The Hyena at The Sinclair Music Hall – Selected by Kristen

These Albany-based rockers are heading to Boston, where twangy guitars, raspy vocals, and youthful lyrics will enliven our city’s prevalent emo/math-rock scene. Similar to the essence of Mom Jeans., Oso Oso and Remo Drive, Prince Daddy & The Hyena transform distorted punk-rock into a cathartic experience. Their nihilistic and profound outlook, reflected both musically and lyrically, challenges the listener to burrow into their work’s many layers and uncover the soul behind it. A myriad of moods to get utterly lost in, Prince Daddy & The Heyna will put on a fierce show.

Saturday, July 20

Iration at the Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion – Selected by Mario

If ever a song title were to capture a band’s overall vibe perfectly, Iration’s “Summer Nights” would be the one to do it. If you suddenly find yourself thinking of cool air, the distant sounds of waves breaking, drinks with friends, and an overall mellow mood, then what you might just be missing are some sweet reggae vibes to complete the equation. Iration will surely be bringing all of that to the Boston Summer as the Santa Barbara group make a quick stop as they continue their Live from Paradise tour.


Tuesday, July 23

Black Pumas at Brighton Music Hall – Selected by Knar

Touting an impressive vocal range, psychedelic production, and soulful guitar rock, Austin duo Black Pumas has earned comparisons to Alabama Shakes, CeeLo Green, and the Black Keys—with the Guardian even dubbing them a blend of Sam Cooke and Wu-Tang Clan. Perhaps it’s easy to draw up such a varied list of similar acts because there’s a bit of everything in Black Pumas. Tracks like “Sweet Conversations” capture a warm, feel-good kind of vibe that brings to mind the hazy summery sounds of War, there’s a riff that sounds like it’s out of a James Bond theme song driving the intro of “Fire,” and the soaring falsetto of “Black Moon Rising” proves the similarities to Brittany Howard. Part of the strength of the record is its impressive production, so let’s see how it translates to their live show.

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