System of a Down

These Armenian-American alt-metal rockers haven’t released any new music since 2005, but you wouldn’t have known it from the sold-out crowd at their May 22 concert at the Pearl at the Palms. Fans jumped around, banged their heads and sang at the top of their lungs as System barreled through nearly 30 tracks from their four official albums (ignoring 2002’s collection of outtakes, Steal This Album). Frontman Serj Tankian performed vocal gymnastics with his operatic tongue-twister delivery, commenting on everything from police brutality and American foreign policy to coked-out groupies and the perils of Hollywood, while guitarist Daron Malakian danced around the stage delivering melodic and angular riffs that fueled crowd favorites such as “Chop Suey!,” “Toxicity” and “Sugar.” Although System might just be easing back into things with this tour, it’s apparent that the band still possesses a relationship with their fans that few can claim.

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Elvis Costello

Concert Review

Elvis Costello

By M. Scott Krause

Elvis Costello and The Imposters played a high-energy set on May 13 at the Pearl, treating fans to dozens of highlights from his rich back catalog. Costello, looking younger and fitter than the last time I saw him in 2002, kicked off the show with “I Hope You’re Happy Now.” He spent the next two hours entertaining the audience with revved-up versions of “Radio Radio,” “Uncomplicated” and an especially funky take on “(I Don’t Want to Go to) Chelsea.”

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