20 must-see fall concerts in Toronto
Fall concerts in Toronto are right around the corner. There's already a chill in the air, and the cardigans are coming out — okay that was a bit of a tease, since no Swedish sweater-named bands are coming through Toronto this fall. But luckily, a lot of amazing acts are: from Janelle Monae and Drake's birthday show to Nine Inch Nails and Slayer, this autumn promises concerts for everyone.
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Sept 19 - 21 | Canada's Walk of Fame (Burton + Maestro etc) | Various Venues
While there is seemingly something inherently awkward about Canadian awards ceremonies (perhaps we're just too modest?), the lineup at this quickly upcoming festival should temper that. As part of Canada's Walk of Fame Festival slated between September 19 - 21 (congratulations, Terry Fox), you'll have a chance to see Burton Cummings, Serena Ryder, Maestro Fresh Wes and other great Canadian artists.
Sept. 25 | Pet Shop Boys | Sony Centre
Grab some west end girls and head (a bit) east to Sony Centre on September 25 for a glory-filled trip back in time with the Pet Shop Boys. While their best years are arguably behind them, the boys haven't lost an inch of showmanship, and you can expect audio/visuals at this one to be as stimulating as the venues allows. Tickets are $50 to $100, which is pretty much exactly what you'd expect this show to cost.
Sept. 27 | Austra | The Phoenix
One of Toronto's hottest bands right now, the constantly on-tour Austra will play the Phoenix on September 27, so this is your chance to impress that cute hipster boy you've had your eye on all summer. Beyond that noble task, you'll get the chance to soak in the dark, brooding sounds of the band's second LP, Olympia. Singer Katie Stelmanis knows how to handle a crowd, so don't be surprised if you see some dancing as well. $25 gets you in the door.
Oct. 1 | Action Bronson and Danny Brown | Danforth Music Hall
Having released a new EP this year, Action Bronson keeps hitting higher heights of the hip hop scene, and he'll be bringing Danny Brown and his loquacious lyrics to us on October 1 at the Danforth Music Hall. Tickets are $43.25 in advance. Correction: Danny Brown will not be available for this concert due to border issues.
Oct. 3 | Kid Cudi | The ACC
Ohio hip hop artist Kid Cudi will be joined by Big Sean and Logic to at the ACC in October, and the show will be all ages. See the Grammy winning lonely loner free his mind up close and personal (or from like one hundred people away, whatever). Tickets run from $39.50--$69.50.
Oct. 4 | Nine Inch Nails | The ACC
Returning from a long hiatus, (closer to) god of all things spooky Trent Reznor is back, and bringing Nine Inch Nails to the ACC on October 4. Do you own enough black clothing? You might want to get some more. Tickets will cost you between $66(.66?)-- $112.75.
Oct 11 | Goblin | The Opera House
Italian psych creepers Goblin are coming to town, and if the soundtrack (or colour pallette) of your life is anything like that of a Dario Argento film, you'll want to be at the Opera House on October 11. You could drop anywhere from $27.50--$75 on this one.
Oct 16 | Bonobo
Much like the giving ape he is named for, British producer/DJ Bonobo is coming to the Sound Academy on October 16 to give us a taste of real pleasure. We'd make a joke about monkeying around, but we're so lost in these basslines... send help. This show will only set you back $22.
Oct. 17/19/20 | The Weeknd | Massey Hall
Get ready to start your weekend early when R&B's moodiest son Abel Tesfaye comes back to serenade his masses of (screaming) hometown fans October 17, 19, and 20 at Massey Hall. Fingers crossed for extra special surprise guests, and not ending up next to someone who has a cardiac arrest if Tesfaye looks in their direction. Ticket prices go from $45--$75.
Oct. 19 | X AVANT feat. A Tribe Called Red | BLK BOX
ImagineNative Film Festival is teaming up with the Music Gallery's X Avant series to put on this highly anticipated show: Polaris nominated aboriginal DJs A Tribe Called Red will take over BLK BOX October 19th. Read our take on why they should win the Polaris Prize here. Tickets are $20 advance.
Oct. 19 | Janelle Monae | Kool Haus
Our favourite Archandroid and current Electric Lady, Janelle Monáe, will entrance the Kool Haus on October 19. Gold hearted Monáe is an amazing performer and a gem for contemporary pop music, along with her boisterous, swinging, grinning, dancing Wondaland Arch Orchestra, so if there's anyway you can see this show and bring all your favourite people along, do it. Tickets are a cool $25 a head.
Oct. 24 | Drake | The ACC
It'll be hard to top what he did at OVO Fest this year, but hometown boy Drake is playing the ACC come October 24 (his birthday, no less), and he's bringing his good friends Miguel and Future with him. Expect a full house, expensive sweat suits on the merch table, some deafening noise when Miguel takes his shirt off (or kicks some lovely gal in the face), and Drizzy to on top of his game as the proud birthday boy. The show is sold out.
Oct. 27 | Cyndi Lauper | Massey Hall
So when was the last time you just had fun? 'Cause it might be that time again. Cyndi Lauper will be in town on October 27 at Massey Hall touring off her latest album, Memphis Blues. Lauper has had remarkable staying power in a career that's spanned over four decades witnessed the singer-songwriter shift genres multiple times and blossom into an accomplished musician in addition to her history as a '80s pop icon. This bit of fun will cost $45--$75.
Nov. 1 | Braids | The Great Hall
After releasing their second album this summer, Montreal's gentle pop experimenters BRAIDS are still making waves in the indie world. Check them out the day after Halloween at the Great Hall. Tickets are $13.50.
Nov. 5 | My Bloody Valentine | Kool Haus
On the heels of their triumphant return this spring, My Bloody Valentine is hitting the stages, and before November 5 they'll be sure to sell out Kool Haus. Should you manage to snap up tickets, a moody, distortion-filled show awaits. MBV isn't big on gimmicky visuals, but the old school lighting and fog are a perfect complement to the band's material, both new and old. Tickets come in at $45.
Nov 12 | Kanye West | Air Canada Centre
Kanye's Yeezus blew the minds of, um, everyone, and if you missed his guest appearance at OVO Fest, this is your chance to have the ground breaking rapper all to yourself. It also promises to be one of the biggest shows of the year, and then there's the matter of Kendrick Lamar being on the bill. Tickets will cost you between $51.75--$211.75.
Nov 16 | Mazzy Star | Danforth Music Hall
Mazzy Star's newest album, Seasons of Your Day, is already being pre-released on NPR. Their concert on November 16 at the Danforth Music Hall, and if you've ever wanted to sway gently and fade into Hope Sandoval's presence, this is not to be missed. Tickets run between $32.50--$47.50.
Nov. 21 | Slayer | Ricoh Coliseum
Still loud and feisty, Slayer will be in town November 21 at the Ricoh Coliseum. After the death of Jeff Hanneman (RIP) earlier this year, Tom Araya, Kerry King, Gary Holt and Paul Bostaph are on this tour. Tickets are fairly affordable, running from $49.50--$69.50.
Nov. 22 | Born Ruffians | Danforth Music Hall
Having released a stellar fourth album this spring, Toronto-based indie rockers Born Ruffians are set to play an awesome show at the Danforth Music Hall on November 22. The show will only set you back $18.50--$20.
Nov. 30 | Hayden | Danforth Music Hall
Reclusive Hayden will end his fall tour with a hometown show at the Danforth Music Hall on November 30, sharing his eclectic genre-bending sound and material from his latest release, Us Alone. The Toronto-based artist doesn't play live a whole lot (though he did perform at his label's Field Trip Festival this summer), so the chance to catch him at this venue is one that fans should cherish — it might be a long wait until he comes out of hiding again. $32.50--$39.50 and you're in the door.
Dec. 16 | Beyonce | The ACC
It's not really going to feel like a fall show per se, but we figured you should know that Beyonce is coming to town on December 16, and you should be at the ACC if you want to see her and her single ladies. Bey shows are a huge spectacle, and while ticket prices aren't kind to one's wallet at $63.25 to $268.25, you're guaranteed a strong performance from this queen of pop. You might even spot Jay-Z hanging around. A seat will cost anywhere from $63.25 to $268.25.
Lead photo by Bruce Emberley