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We’ve covered this before: February boasts the always tremendous Noise Pop festival, April gets Fauxchella. August can easily get dismissed as “when Outside Lands happens,” but this year Sir Paul McCartney’s headlining act might not even be the monthly show to catch in the Bay Area.

In fact, Outside Lands is likely the second best festival with those caveats. Monterrey stepped up to produce the inaugural First City Festival for August 24-25. While it may not boast the top heavy names of Outside Lands (where you can see NIN, McCartney, Vampire Weekend, Phoenix, The National, YYYs, etc.), the First City Lineup has more depth at a lesser price. Particularly if college radio stylings are your favorite genre, it’s hard to beat First City: Father John Misty, Neko Case, Modest Mouse, Deerhunter, The Hold Steady, Washed Out and more.

As for who stands out among all that talent…

Can’t Miss for late July/August 2013

In addition to the plethora of festival sets above, things start with the Bay Area’s premier LCD Soundsystem coverband, North American Scum, performing at Rickshaw. This time, it’s a concert that comes with a social ping-pong element (you read that correctly). Justin Timberlake and Daughn Gibson each take a different approach to crooning the week before, acts like Cat Power, Best Coast, Deerhunter (non-festival set!) and MGMT highlight the time after.

Still, there’s only one choice here: My Blood Valentine is coming through town. Deerhunter may not exist without them, and the forefathers of shoegaze surprised everyone by breaking a 23-year-spell of album silence in February. Those of a certain age l-o-v-e Loveless, but everyone paying attention to music today agrees MBV is worthy of equal celebration. To top it all off, the band is notorious for ear-echoing live performances. It’s a rare US tour date at a venue big enough so you won’t go deaf, time to grab tickets for Bill Graham ASAP.

If you’re spending $50…

[North American Scum—$6, 8/3, Sat, Rickshaw] +

[Daughn Gibson—$12, 7/30, Tue, Rickshaw] +

[Deerhunter$21 8/26, Mon, GAMH] =

$39, which is less than one MBV ticket ($45) sadly. 

Curated Calendar

(Not all the shows, but the ones worth seeing)

Late July

Cherry Poppin’ DaddiesYoshi’s (7/23) Tu
The Postal Service—UC Berkeley (7/26, 7/27) Fri, Sat  *w/Divine Fits on 7/27
Weekend—The Independent (7/26) Fri
Justin Timberlake—Candlestick Park (7/26) Fri
Aesop Rock + Kimya Dawson—Slim’s (7/26) Fri
Hockey—The Independent (7/27) Sat
Fitz + The Tanrtrums—Warfield (7/28) Sun
Daughn Gibson—Rickshaw Shop (7/30) Tues

August

Cat Power—Warfield (8/1) Th
Ben Kweller—The Indy (8/2) Fri
North American Scum (ping pong night)—Rickshaw (8/3) Sat
US Air Guitar Semifinals—The Indy (8/3) Sat
Outside Lands—Golden Gate Park (8/9-8/11) Fri-Sun
(Paul McCartney, NIN, YYY, Phoenix, Jurassic 5, Hall & Oates, The National, D’Angelo, Vampire Weekend and more)
Best Coast—Fillmore (8/15) Th
The Hood Internet—The Indy (8/17) Saturday
Polyphonic Spree—The Chapel (8/19) Mon
My Bloody Valentine—Bill Graham Civic (8/23) Fri
First City Festival—Monterrey (8/24-8/25) Sat, Sun
(Deerhunter, Modest Mouse, MGMT, Toro Y Moi, Washed Out, Hold Steady, Father John Misty, Purity Ring, etc.)
Deerhunter—GAMH (8/26) Mon
MGMT—Warfield (8/28) Wed
Icona Pop w/ K.Flay—Fillmore (8/30) Fri
Alt-J—The Fox (8/29-8/30) Th, Fri

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