Summer is nearly over and it's time to get busy. So to help you plan your concert schedule for the coming months, we present the fall's 30 must-see tours. They range from hip-hop heavyweights Kanye West & Jay-Z's Watch the Throne extravaganza to rising indie artists like EMA, Beruit, St. Vincent, and Girls. Of course, no live lineup would be complete without Foo Fighters and... Gwar....

1. Fall Forward


Summer is nearly over and it's time to get busy. So to help you plan your concert schedule for the coming months, we present the fall's 30 must-see tours. They range from hip-hop heavyweights Kanye West & Jay-Z's Watch the Throne extravaganza to rising indie artists like EMA, Beruit, St. Vincent, and Girls. Of course, no live lineup would be complete without Foo Fighters and... Gwar....


Preview written by William Goodman

2. Fall Forward


Summer is nearly over and it's time to get busy. So to help you plan your concert schedule for the coming months, we present the fall's 30 must-see tours. They range from hip-hop heavyweights Kanye West & Jay-Z's Watch the Throne extravaganza to rising indie artists like EMA, Beruit, St. Vincent, and Girls. Of course, no live lineup would be complete without Foo Fighters and... Gwar....


Preview written by William Goodman



Dates: September 2 through November 12
Price: $20-$27.75
Opening Acts: Two Fresh,Foreign Beggars, Skream Benga, Nero, 12th Planet, Nadastrom
Why You Should Go: Dance music is experiencing a groundswell -- and the 23-year-old Los Angeleno born Sonny Moore is leading the charge from his DJ booth, delivering his experimental electronic music in ecstasy-inducing shockwaves of sound. Skrillex, a summer festival staple and favorite, had football field-sized crowds entranced by his frenetic mix of sub-bass, thumping electro beats, and synths. Skrillex has a special surprise on tour this fall: "It's called the Skrillex Cell," he tells SPIN. "Motion-capture meets image-mapping. Never been done live before. There will be different characters onscreen, whose movements will be controlled by me." Yowsa. For a taste of Skrillex's wild life on the road, watch this.

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Dates: October 1 through October 27
Price: $48-$73
Why You Should Go: It's the pioneering Bristol, England, trip-hop act's first proper U.S. tour in 13 years. It'll start with the trio curating two days of ATP's All Tomorrow's Parties festival in Asbury, NJ. "We've always thought that we must come back to tour in the States, something we wanted to do with the release of [2008's] Third, but our schedule just wouldn't allow it," multi-instrumentalist Adrian Utley tells SPIN. It will now -- and thank god. Their last U.S. appearance, at Coachella in 2008, was an "overwhelmingly haunting assault," wrote SPIN's Charles Aaron. "Portishead unloaded a devastating, headliner-worthy display of nihilistic lounge-band atmospherics that confirmed their reunion/comeback as the year's most creatively relevant and timely."

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Dates: September 20 through October 27
Price: $10-$12
Opening Acts: Hooray for Earth
Why You Should Go: This New York-based indie rock quartet are one of SPIN's favorite new bands -- and that's sayin' somethin'. Their second full-length album, Lenses Alien (out September 13), shines thanks to frontman Joe D'Agostino's sharp guitar work and dense, imaginative lyrics, and production by John Agnello (Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr.), who helped the band hone their retro-'90s sound. "Old-school indie purists could use a modern hero, and while it may be unfair to peg Cymbals Eat Guitars as '90s revivalists," we wrote in our review, "their second album will speak to fans of Built to Spill's squall, Superchunk's chug, and Modest Mouse's string-bending strangeness."

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Dates: September 13 through October 5
Price: $25.50-$45
Opening Acts: Nick Lowe
Why You Should Go: Now in their 17th year, the Chicago alt-rockers are doing things their way. They've formed a their own label, dBpm Records, on which they'll release their eighth album, The Whole Love (out Sept. 27). "It's a little bit more obnoxious and irreverent of a pop record than people have heard from us, maybe, ever," frontman Jeff Tweedy tells SPIN. "And that's exciting." It is. And so is the prospect of seeing them live. All six members are virtuosic in their own respect. And Tweedy's banter is priceless: At a solo gig last winter a fan yelled, "You were amazing last night!!!" referencing Tweedy's appearance at Yo La Tengo's annual Hanukkah show in New Jersey. Tweedy quipped, "Uh, excuse me? Is my wife Tweeting again?"

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Dates: October 1 through November 1
Price: $25
Opening Acts: Walls, Nissennenmondai
Why You Should Go: For their second studio album, the recent Glass Drops, the New York math-rockers -- featured in SPIN's July Success Issue -- overcame a big problem: frontman Tyondai Braxton left. So they "went back up to the studio, erased everything, started pretty much from scratch and banged [the LP] out in four months," drummer John Stanier tells SPIN. The results? "Braxton's clever, found-sound loops are missed, but the remaining members' rampant ideas and inexorable groove keep Battles engrossing." Read our full review here.

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Dates: October 29 through December 18
Price: $59.50-$250
Why You Should Go: They're the two titans of hip-hop and now they're working as one. Watch the Throne, Hova and 'Ye's diamond-studded collabo LP, broke records for online preorder sales and then sprinted up the charts. Reports were the two disagreed over the production of the tour, with Jay-Z, who's known for his relatively stripped down, hits-laden sets, butting heads with Kanye, whose festival-closing appearance at Coachella was "a bold Greek tragedy," wrote SPIN, with "unadulterated pomp and grandeur," including a surprise entrance via crane, 30 ballet dancers, nonstop fireworks, and a monolithic painted backdrop of battling angels fit for a medieval cathedral. However it turns out, their performance is guaranteed to be big.

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Dates: October 29 through December 6
Price: $25-$45
Why You Should Go: The Canadian singer-songwriter and sometime Broken Social Scenester Leslie Feist broke out big with her fourth solo album, The Reminder, which nabbed five Grammy nods thanks in part to its infectious lead single, "1234." You know it: It's the fun, Sesame Street-ready ditty featured in those ubiquitous iPod Nano commercials from a few years back. On October 4 Feist will end a three-year hiatus with the release of Metals, a "gorgeous collection of overtly poppy tunes, cinematic art-rock, and strummy ballads," writes SPIN. She's elegant and emotive live, and prone to play covers -- listen to her recent rendition of the Velvet Underground's "Femme Fatale" at a VU tribute in Paris, featuring an all-star backing band.

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Dates: September 21 through November 13
Price: $22.50-$27
Opening Acts: Laetitia Sadier (Stereolab) and Basia Bulat
Why You Should Go: Because if it wasn't for New Mexico native Zach Condon you'd probably still dislike Balkan and Eastern European music. With his caramel pipes, Condon leads his band on a 'round-the-world musical expedition, getting passport stamps in not just Eastern Block folk, but also French pop and Mexican funeral marches. Their fall tour in support of Rip Tide is a rare treat -- it's the band's first in more than four years, and they've already wowed at summer festivals, including Bonnaroo. So good, in fact, that Strokes frontman Julian Casablancas, who was standing side-stage watching their set, was late to his band's own performance across the Tennessee farmland festival grounds.

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Dates: September 12 through November 7
Price: $15
Opening Acts: Danny Brown, Despot
Why You Should Go: Because this Brooklyn-based rap crew are redefining hip-hop for a new generation, one booze-drenched party, aka live concert, at a time. The trio -- Heems and Kool A.D., and their hypeman Dapwell -- broke out on the kitschy (or Dadaist?) viral goof "Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell," but proved they're no joke with its pair of follow-up mixtapes, including Shut Up, Dude. On their upcoming debut full-length, Relax, featuring production from Diplo, El-P, Rostam from Vampire Weekend, Drake affiliate Francis Farewell Starlite, and one of the dudes from Yeasayer, "It's still unclear how seriously you're supposed to take these people, very much by design," we wrote. "Overall theme: Stop trying to figure this out."

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12. EMA


Dates: October 7 through October 30
Price: $20
Opening Acts: EMA will support Wild Beasts, CSS, and MEN on select dates.
Why You Should Go: Um, did you see her cover Nirvana's "Endless Nameless" as part of SPIN's Newermind tribute album? Hot damn. Watch. It. Now. After splitting from noise-folk band Gowns last year, the 28-year-old singer-songwriter Erika M. Anderson stepped out as EMA last spring with the harrowing, emotionally raw Past Life Martyred Saints. "She is one of the year's most important artists," wrote SPIN's Charles Aaron. "Past Life is just as intensely accomplished as PJ Harvey's latest, and that album's one of the most intensely accomplished of PJ's career. Whatever genre Anderson draws from, she can artfully suffuse the air around you or abruptly accost you like an angel gone rogue. She's one of those young artists who seems worldly beyond her years, or even ageless, because of her ability to communicate such universal depths."

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Dates: Now through October 8
Price: $21.00 - $73.00
Opening Acts: Manchester Orchestra, Matt & Kim
Why You Should Go: They're the two bookends of the pop-punk scene: San Diego's Blink-182 launched the genre in the early-'90s, while My Chemical Romance are pushing pop-punk towards new, more experimental sounds in the 21st century. Blink are reunited and preparing to release their first album in eight years, Neighborhoods, and singer-guitarist Tom DeLonge is thrilled to tour with MCR: "My Chemical Romance are the next generation after Blink," he tells SPIN. "The scope of their artistic acumen is radical and progressive. This partnership made a lot of sense. My Chem is already circling in the air right above us."

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Dates: September 20 through October 20
Price: $20-$25
Opening Acts: Holy Sons, Ty Segall
Why You Should Go: Because he's Stephen Fucking Malkmus, the guitar hero frontman and genius wordsmith of Pavement who changed indie rock for all time. Have you heard Wowee Zowee? Buy it. Buy two copies to be safe. On August 23, Malkmus returned with his fifth solo LP, Mirror Traffic, which was recorded over a whirlwind week in a Los Angeles studio with his longtime band the Jicks and his musical "ally" Beck on production. It's his best post-Pavement effort yet, "a patient, inviting album that feels like a fresh start from a guy whose recording career spans multiple boom-and-bust cycles," SPIN writes in the review. "I hope that this album is a rebirth of sorts," Malkmus tells SPIN. It is.

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Dates: September 22 through October 21
Price: $18-$20
Why You Should Go: If you open the Rock Dictionary and turn to "Disco-punk," you'll see "House of Jealous Lovers," a blitz of guitar shards and drum beats that defined an early-aughts movement in music in five throbbing minutes of dance floor bliss. After an implosion and subsequent five-year break, provoked by the suicide of frontman Luke Jenner's mom and the birth of his child, the New York City band are now reunited and dropping their fourth full-length In The Grace of Your Love (out September 6) -- which proves that they've aged gracefully. At a recent comeback gig, Jenner, who attended church regularly during the hiatus, "pushed the Rapture past the jittery post-punk and dancefloor hedonism that defined their early work toward a kind of day-glo Gospel with ecstatic 'hallelujahs' and references to grace and a 'loving Spirit.'" "Going to church and praying with other people really helped me a lot," Jenner tells SPIN. "Doing things together with other people has always been redemptive for me -- like being in a band."

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Dates: September 28 through November 8
Price: $20-$35
Why You Should Go: The controversial Los Angeles hip-hop collective are taking their wild circus on the road for their first headlining tour. Expect madness … and possibly a few protestors: At SXSW, Tyler, the Creator, the defacto leader of Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, climbed a speaker bank, spit a few verses of "French," then "leapt 20 feet down into the screaming crowd, who floated him unscathed back to the stage," SPIN wrote at the time. Then, at this summer's Pitchfork fest, Odd Future went head to head with anti-domestic violence organization Between Friends, who handed out fliers to festivalgoers that read, "Cool It. Don't Be A Fan Of Violence." Odd Future responded with a facetious cover of Bob Marley's "One Love."

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Dates: Now through October 26
Price: $10-$12
Opening Acts: Young Man, the Belle Brigade, Milo Green
Why You Should Go: The Los Angeles folk-pop outfit put in one of the best sets of Lollapalooza: "Their sound is like a musical anti-depressant," we wrote. On the strength of their self-titled EP and debut full-length, Never Trust a Happy Song (out September 13), SPIN also picked the band as a Breaking Out artist in our upcoming October issue. The five-piece -- who met while separately on vacation in Greece --brought their "arty blend of freak folk, cinematic indie rock, and unabridged energy" to San Francisco's Outside Lands festival, where they pumped up the audience with their indie hit "Colours," and filled balloons and tossed them into the crowd. One, however, was filled with pineapple juice and flew back toward the stage, exploding in frontman Christian Zucconi's face. Fun!

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Dates: September 14 through November 6
Price: $29.50-$52.50
Opening Acts: Rise Against, Mariachi El Bronx, Cage the Elephant, the Joy Formidable, Social Distortion
Why You Should Go: Dave Grohl and Co. have crafted their heaviest album in years with Wasting Light, and live the quartet sound even heavier. At a Lollapalooza warm-up gig at Chicago's 1,150-capacity Metro, "Foo Fighters seemed hellbent on playing with unhinged abandon … like they had something to prove," we wrote. "The Foos write super-sized rock music, the kind that still fills stadiums … and it's worth celebrating. When Grohl sang 'This could take all night' on 'Learn to Fly,' his clothes soaked through with sweat, it felt like he was referring to the actual time required for the Foos to play each one of their innumerable hits." Added perk: If there's a jerk in the pit, throwing punches and harshing your mellow, Grohl might just kick him out of the show. It wouldn't be the first time.

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Dates: October 2 through November 4
Price: $20-$25
Why You Should Go: With her new LP Strange Mercy (out September 13), the 28-year-old singer-songwriter born Annie Clark "strikes a downright divine balance between scornful rock squall and serenely sweet vocalizing," we wrote in our nine-out-of-10 review. "Her third album is her most mercurial yet, a dense clash of post-punk fuzz and baroque-pop rumination, with esoteric new elements, from atonal electro-jazz to synth scratches to cheeky talkbox." And live in concert Clark -- who appears on the cover of SPIN's September Style Issue -- pairs bare emotion with ripping riffs. "[She] moved with unsuppressed intensity through her fleet guitar hooks, jack-knifing with formidable speed over her strings and returning to her microphone with a broad smile, her Botticelli curls mussed," we said about her show at New York City's Metropolitan Art Museum. "Clark's greatest asset as a songwriter remains her deft manipulation of heavy instrumentation against her feathery vocals. Strange Mercy marks her experimentation at its finest."

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Dates: September 15 through October 21
Price: $12-$20
Opening Acts: Com Truise, Purity Ring
Why You Should Go: Forget everything you've read about "chillwave" or "glow-fi" or "hypnagogic Pop," or whatever they're calling filtered, ethereal indie pop these days, because Neon Indian, one of the leaders of this "genre," is simply crafting emotive and gorgeous rock music. Mastermind Alan Palomo's second full-length, Era Extraña, is packed with "glistening new wave synths and '80s-style dream-pop melodies," we wrote. Live, the sound is so blissfully hypnotic that if you're not high on drugs, you'll think you are.

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Dates: September 14 through October 9
Price: $15-$22
Why You Should Go: With 2009's Album, this San Francisco group was "responsible for the year's most captivating -- if not outright best -- debut," we wrote, but with its follow-up Father, Son, Holy Ghost they're shooting to surpass that. "The magic of Girls' songs is how they distill youthful romance's fatalistic fucked-upness to a sublime heart-to-heart," says SPIN's Charles Aaron. Expect Girls to rock with added power on tour: "We didn't have [a quintet] on the first album," Owens tells SPIN. "But this new album was recorded as a band, and it has that full band feel."

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Dates: September 15 through October 8
Price: $35-$55
Why You Should Go: Instead of a snore-fest dorm room dance party this fall, students are in for the real deal: One of the world's most successful DJs is coming to a college town near you. That includes out-of-the-way places like Kingston, RI, and Ypislanti, MI. The U.S. "College Invasion" tour is the first of its kind for a DJ, and is a sure sign of dance music's grip on young music fans nationwide. The tour's closing show, October 8 at Los Angeles' 26,000-person Home Depot Stadium, will be the biggest single DJ show in U.S. history. The Dutchman known as Tijs Michiel Verwest is expected to play selections from his decade-long career, as well as tracks from Kiss From The Past, his 2011 release under his alias Allure. Now's your chance to bump and grind with that hottie from Biology 101.

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Dates: October 7 through November 15
Price: $17.50-$25
Opening Acts: Smoke Fairies, the Belle Brigade
Why You Should Go: It's a match made in a roots-rock heaven: Portland, OR, outfit Blitzen Trapper and Los Angeles quartet Dawes are among the leaders of indie rock's dusty folk-rock scene, and together they're bringing a double dose to cities nationwide. Blitzen will be supporting their new disc, American Goldwing (out September 13), their most cohesive effort yet featuring frontman Eric Early's tales of down-and-out travelers, while Dawes get behind Nothing Is Wrong, their Jackson Brown-featuring LP which "sounds familiar and comforting," we wrote in our review. "The pain in these songs stems from time spent on the road."

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Dates: October 25 through November 5
Price: $15-$18
Opening Acts: AraabMuzik
Why You Should Go: The self-titled debut album from London DJ/producer Aaron Jerome, aka the tribal-mask-donning SBTRKT, is an anomaly in the burgeoning dubstep, house, and R&B scene: "Nothing on the LP feels calculated," we wrote in our eight-out-of-10 review. SBTRKT, who first made his name remixing MIA, Radiohead, Modeselektor, Basement Jaxx, Mark Ronson, and Underworld, "goes for more supple textures, like kalimba and glockenspiel, and stacks vocals as extravagantly as the layers of a wedding cake." His sets are already a hot ticket: Drake joined him onstage in Toronto to drop a verse, and at his U.S. debut at New York City's PS1 Museum, the line wrapped around the block. Get your ticket now.

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Dates: September 30 through October 22
Price: $34-$39
Opening Acts: Telekinesis, the Hold Steady, the Head and the Heart
Why You Should Go: Because it might be your last chance for a while. The Seattle indie vets have been touring virtually non-stop since the May release of their latest album, the keyboard-driven Codes and Keys, and while the band's heart-crushing live shows are sending fans into a tizzy (we're looking at you Toronto), DCFC are anxiously awaiting the finish line. "I would love to find myself making a new record [soon] rather than moving into our seventh straight month of tour," Gibbard tells SPIN. "I'd like to capitalize on feeling inspired to write rather than hobbling up onstage and jumping around for two hours."

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26. YUCK


Dates: September 22 through October 14
Price: $15
Opening Acts: Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Why You Should Go: '90s revivalism is in full swing -- the return of Beavis & Butt-head, Nevermind tributes, et al -- but this London quartet are putting a contemporary spin on their nostalgia. An amalgam of the sounds of Sonic Youth, Smashing Pumpkins, Pavement, and especially Dinosaur Jr., Yuck meld heavy riffage and emotional angst into sugarcoated pop hooks. "Yuck are one of the year's most refreshing forces of melodic riffage," wrote SPIN's Charles Aaron. Yuck have been turning heads since they landed stateside last winter in the middle of a snowstorm to find a venue packed with frosted fans, ready and waiting(their van was two hours late. Still, totally worth it). They crushed SXSW and Barcelona's Primavera, so expect nothing less thanf awesome.

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Dates: September 23 through October 18
Price: $23-$28
Opening Acts: The Smith Westerns
Why You Should Go: Because on their fourth album, the Josh Homme-produced Suck It and See, the Sheffield, England, quartet show they've survived the early-aughts Monkeymania to "hit a remarkable mid-career groove that most bands their age will never see," we said in our review. "Which isn't to say that they're coasting." At their DC tour-opener this summer, frontman Alex Turner and the Boys blitzed through their poppy newer tunes, which "are less wordy and more conducive to sing-alongs than their earlier material," we wrote. "Turner and his cohorts may not be the kind of guys who look good on the dance floor, but their jolting, heady music can rock'n'roll one handsomely."

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Dates: September 13 through October 17
Price: $30
Opening Acts: Midnight Magic
Why You Should Go: Because Within and Without, Ernest Greene's debut LP as Washed Out, sounds a lot like its cover looks, which is very, very sexy. First pegged as another chillwave poster boy thanks to his blog-buzz-y EPs, the Perry, Georgia, native has since recruited a crack live band and outgrown any silly tags. "[It's] lush chillwave for people who can't stand chillwave," we wrote in the LP's nine-out-of-10 review. With help from producer Ben Allen (Animal Collective, Gnarls Barkley), Greene "revisits his '80s reveries, crafting Balearic bliss and refreshing New Romantic flounce. He even invigorates '90s trip-hop's head-nod." All of which he brought to his New York City debut this summer, which had even hard-to-impress Manhattanites swaying and grinding.

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Dates: Now through November 5
Price: $50
Opening Acts: Excision
Why You Should Go: This Toronto electro mastermind sporting a Mickey-Mouse-on-LSD look is possibly the world's biggest rock star. He owned Lollapalooza 2011: He was the only dance act to play the festival's mainstage, which was decked out with a ginormous revolving Rubik's Cube, and "when Lolla founder Perry Farrell carefully made his way through the swampy frenzy of rain-and-sweat-dripping bodies, carrying his son piggyback, it was tacit acknowledgment that this was a hugely significant breakthrough moment for electronic dance music in America," wrote SPIN's Charles Aaron. "The level of spectacle that the electronic musician/producer commands is not just beyond any other electronic act, it's beyond any other act period; even the Muses and Coldplays of the world seem like community theater by comparison."

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Dates: September 13 through October 20
Price: $18-$25
Opening Acts: Cults, Reptar
Why You Should Go: This Los Angeles psych-pop trio's "Pumped Up Kicks" is a top contender for the song of the summer, and it helped the band "announce themselves as major players," we said in our seven-out-of-10 review of their debut album, Torches. But they're no one hit wonders: other songs, like "Helena Beat" and "Houdini," also get the dance party started with their synth pulses, snappy drums, and frontman and namesake Mark Foster's falsetto croon and persistent hooks. It certainly worked at San Francisco's Outside Lands -- see the proof.

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Dates: September 3 through October 12
Price: $18-$25
Opening Acts: Reptar
Why You Should Go: This pairing of Brian Oblivion and Madeline Follin is putting a new spin on the swooning sounds of '60s acts like the Shangri-Las and the Shirelles. "[Cults] managed to capture the entire musical zeitgeist," we wrote. "Big, sugar-sweet girl-group vocals, scuzzy, drug-addled arrangements, a willfully naïve obsession with love and heartbreak, and a touch of post-riot grrrl sass." Cults played on the roof of SPIN HQ in June and Follin stole the show: "Many bands have tried to filter the sound of classic girl groups through contemporary pop and indie rock ... But none of them have had a singer to match their nostalgic ambitions."

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32. GWAR


Dates: October 18 through November 27
Price: $18-$20
Opening Acts: Every Time I Die, Ghoul, Warbeast
Why You Should Go: Because the shock-metal six-piece have been putting on perhaps the most grossly entertaining and bloody spectacle in rock for more than 25 years. Here's a list of the atrocities committed onstage at Bonnaroo 2010: "Live human dissection by buzz-saw, glorification of crack smoking, incitement to violence via brutal moshing, desecration of a deceased pop idol (Michael Jackson depicted raping an alien infant), and quite possibly treason as Barack Obama was eventually decapitated in effigy," we wrote. Their tunes are damn good, too, a fitting soundtrack to the carnage with thrashing pop chaos, mask melting riffs, and blitzkrieg beats.

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