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Stage Buzz: Judas Priest, Panic! at the Disco, Kevin Morby, Smithereens

| October 25, 2022

Kevin Morby pays The Vic Theatre on Halloween (photo by Johnny Eastlund)

You can’t think of heavy metal without thinking of the icons Judas Priest. The band has been “Breaking the Law” since the 1970s and has become one of the most successful metal acts in years since thanks to hits like “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming,” “Living After Midnight,” and “Painkiller.” Now, these titans of metal are celebrating “50 Heavy Metal Years” with a performance at Waukegan’s Genesee Theatre on Tuesday, October 25, at 7:30 PM. Find tickets here.

New Wave stalwarts EXTC, a spin-off of the original XTC features co-founding drummer Terry Chambers with a new ensemble of Steve Hampton on guitar, Matt Hughes on bass, and Steve Tilling on guitar and lead vocals. They hit Reggies on Wednesday, October, and Friday, Oct 28th; for a full preview, read our full Stage Buzz preview.

Panic! At the Disco has evolved over the years, going from a baroque pop-rock band to an electropop powerhouse, with singer Brendon Yurie being its sole member. Seven albums later, the act is one of the most recognizable in rock, thanks in part to Yurie’s impressive range. In support of his latest album, Viva Las Vengeance, Panic! At the Disco will play the United Center with Betty Who, MARINA, and Jake Wesley Rogers on Friday, October 28 at 7 PM. Tickets are still available.

With seven solo albums under his belt, Kevin Morby has left his former life with Woods and The Babies behind. This year saw the release of his critically acclaimed album This Is a Photograph, which tackles Morby’s fear of death and coming to terms with mortality. If you want to avoid trick-or-treaters this Halloween, you can spend the evening with Morby at the Vic Theater on Monday, October 31st at 8 PM. Tickets are on sale here.

The Smithereens return to Chicago at City Winery on Wednesday, November 2. Fondly dubbed “America’s Band,” the quartet’s engine was formed in 1980 by Carteret, New Jersey’s Jim Babjak (guitar), Dennis Diken (drums), and Mike Mesaros (bass). Lead singer Pat DiNizio hailed from nearby Scotch Plains. The group fuses psych-pop sounds from the British Invasion, Midwest power-pop, and East Coast garage rock, scoring alt-rock hits with melodic and muscular songs, including “Blood and Roses,” “Behind the Wall of Sleep,” “Only a Memory,” “Top of the Pops,” “Too Much Passion” and Top 40 single “A Girl Like You.” DiNizio’s final performance with the band occurred at the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles in September 2017. Since the frontman’s untimely passing in December that year, the boys from Carteret have carried the torch and performed regularly with singer Robin Wilson of the Gin Blossoms and beloved “Someday, Someway” songsmith Marshall Crenshaw. Crenshaw will join the Smithereens this show to play the hits and introduce songs from The Lost Album including the sturdy “Out of this World” and chiming psych-rocker “Don’t Look Down.” The newly-released set was recorded independently by the band in 1993 but shelved when work began on RCA Records’ 1994 release A Date with The Smithereens. Find tickets at https://tinyurl.com/SmithereensCWC22  (– Jeff Elbel)

-Ashley Perez Hollingsworth

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Category: Featured, Stage Buzz

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