By Brian Wanbaugh and Caitlin O’Rourke
Get ready for an epic summer of concerts if you’re staying in the Indy area. White River State Park has answered of our prayers and delivered a lawn season worthy of awards, trophies and thank you notes.
April 27, 7 p.m.
Coming off of their shocking Grammy win for Album of the Year for “The Suburbs,” Arcade Fire comes to White River State Park for what is sure to be a fantastic show. Listen for some of their new hits from “The Suburbs,” along with old classics such as “Rebellion (Lies).” Expect great energy and liveliness from lead singer Win Butler and company.
Alison Krauss & The Union Station
June 9, 7:30 p.m.
Alison Krauss is more than the real deal. She has 26 Grammys to her name—more than any other female artist. Her angelic voice and bluegrass roots have widely appealed to audiences. Her summer tour will be be promoting her collaboration with The Union Station, “Paper Airplane,” but we just can’t wait until she pairs up with Robert Plant again.
The Black Keys
June 10, 8 p.m.
Rock duo The Black Keys have moved from underground favorite to bonafide rock stars after climbing to No. 3 on the Billboard Albums chart and receiving five Grammy nominations this past year. Expect a rocking night of guitar-filled jamming to hit songs off their latest album, “Brothers,” mixed with songs from the band’s earlier but less successful releases.
June 14, 7 p.m.
A modern day mountain man/folk/rock singer, Ray LaMontagne and his band, the Pariah Dogs, are set to bring its unique style of music to White River for a classic concert. His latest album, “God Willin’ and the Creek Don’t Rise,” was nominated for two Grammy awards, including Best Contemporary Folk Album and Song of the Year for “Beg Steal or Borrow.” LaMontagne’s soulful voice, unlike most artists, adds depth to his songs.
June 25, 7 p.m.
Its primary influences are jam bands such as Phish and the Grateful Dead, along with progressive rock bands such as King Crimson—so just a warning, this concert could be a long one. Having not released an album since 2009’s “Mantis,” Umphrey’s McGee still has a cult following which makes their shows quite the event for the band and audience alike. In summary: long, yes; boring, never.
Florence + the Machine
July 4, 7 p.m.
It was a rare soul who didn’t enjoy “Dog Days Are Over” when it originally came out. Florence Welch has a voice that at times seems otherworldly and mystical, making her music unique in the parade of pop queens in mainstream music today. Her influence has been strong already, featured in movies like “Eat Pray Love” and even gaining a “Glee” cover earlier this year. Listen to the rest of her debut 2009 album “Lungs” and just try to admit you wouldn’t want to see her live.
August 5, time TBA
Although they won’t be performing an epic rock opera like they did after the release of the ingenious “The Hazards of Love,” their newest album, “The King is Dead,” is pretty amazing itself. It’s a continuation of the most literate indie music we’ve heard. After all, it’s a rare band that can make lines like “All dolled up in gabardine, the lash-flashing Leda of pier nineteen” work in the most un-pretentious way possible.
August 23, time TBA
Love her or hate her, you can’t deny her music is catchy. Whether she’s singing about first kisses with 3OH!3 or her penchant for men who look like Mick Jagger—presumably when he was still in his 20s and 30s—Ke$ha has become a staple for clubs, dance parties and any other time you need a pick-me-up. Go ahead, splash some glitter on your face and “Blah Blah Blah” your heart out. We won’t tell.
The Avett Brothers
October 1, time TBA
You’ve officially made it when you can say you’ve performed “Maggie’s Farm” onstage with Bob Dylan. The Avett Brothers, comprised of actual brothers Scott and Seth, along with Bob Crawford and touring members Joe Kwon and Jacob Edwards, has been the folk scene’s darling for quite some time now. Their newest album, “I and Love and You” has been a huge hit, reaching No. 16 on the Billboard best selling 200. Expect a raw show that encompasses their folk, bluegrass and rock influences.