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Concerts in Chicago in August 2015

Lollapalooza is the big one, but there are plenty more shows in Chicago this August. See who's coming to town with our list of upcoming concerts in Chicago

Billy Joel

Dinosaurs like the heat. The concert slate in late summer reads like it did in 1994—or 1982. Billy Joel, Foo Fighters, Cheap Trick and more hit the big outdoor sheds and stadiums in August. Take a good summer read and a picnic basket and hit the lawn. The summer music festival season enters its (nearly) final stage as well, and Lollapalooza is just the tip of the iceberg. Explore our picks of the top August gigs.

RECOMMENDED: Our complete calendar for concerts in Chicago

Concerts in Chicago in August 2015

Lollapalooza

Critics' pick

Set between breezy Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline, Lollapalooza is the city's largest music festival, boasting numbers of attendance well in the six digits.

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Grant Park, Loop Friday July 29 2016 - Sunday July 31 2016

5 Seconds of Summer

Hey, One Direction, all boy bands go the way of the JoBros. Your fans can't stay 13 forever. Hence the freshest cheeks in the business, Australia's 5 Seconds of Summer, the heartthrobs behind those bizarre hashtags trends you never understand.

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Until Sun Aug 2

The Smashing Pumpkins + Marilyn Manson

Critics' pick

We hope Billy breaks out the old black leather skirts for this one. Oh, right, he goes by William now. Both the Pumpkins and Manson have been on a downward spiral (sorry, wrong electro-goth reference there) since the 1990s, but the two also released their strongest albums in a good while recently, wisely economizing and getting back to loud guitar riffs. They've finally realized their not an alternative, just classic rock.

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Until Fri Aug 7

Phish

These Wisconsin gigs cap off a jam-heavy summer for the region, just weeks after the massive Grateful Dead gigs with Phish frontman Trey Anastasio.

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Until Sun Aug 9

Dinosaur Jr.

Critics' pick

Indie-rock stalwarts Dinosaur Jr., back together in their classic incarnation for almost a decade now, play a gig at the intimate SubT. Expect to hear all the soaring, deliciously fuzzed-out classics you know and love, plus cuts from the Dinos’ most recent album, I Bet on Sky (2012).

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Until Sun Aug 9

Social Distortion

You can have Mike Ness' guitar when you pry it from his cold dead hand. The pioneer of tattooed whiskey-punk keeps his dive-bar hero act going into its fourth decade. If Delilah's were a band, it'd be Social Distortion. Nikki Lane and Drag the River open.

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Until Tue Aug 11

Ezra Furman

Critics' pick

Ezra Furman is a youthful anachronism: a verbose lyricist marooned in an indie scene tilted toward headphone-friendly noisemakers. On his third solo release, Perpetual Motion People, the Evanston native adroitly conveys what it feels like to be young. Like much American pop, Furman's songs stare down adulthood from a post-teen no-man's-land.

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Until Tue Aug 11

Miguel

Critics' pick

Fast-riser Miguel is a big-time style-sampler. Part Latin-tinged hip-hop and part classic soul, his single "Adorn" shot him to stardom after his All I Want is You LP sleeper and brought great anticipation for his latest, Wildheart.

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Until Fri Aug 14

Chicago Summer Psych Fest

Critics' pick

Chicago's psych rockers come back to the third dimension to present a summer edition of the annual celebration of trippy music. On Friday, former Source Family guitarist Djin Aquarian turns in a set backed by Plastic Crimewave Syndicate, while Saturday brings appearances by Latino hard rock quartet Chicago Triangle and the reunion of '70s synth collective VCSR (featuring local knob twirler Bil Vermette).

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Until Sat Aug 15

Mucca Pazza

Critics' pick

The local "punk marching band" trades in its uniforms for dinner jackets and plants itself in seats at this special performance. Recast as an orchestra (the band's signature cheerleaders are now "masters of ceremony"), the band plays behind its latest record, L.Y.A., which draws on influences ranging from big band jazz to classic movie soundtracks.

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Until Sat Aug 15

Idina Menzel

Critics' pick

There are sure to be thousands of little ice princess and green witches when Broadway belter Menzel hits Millennium Park. No, America will not let it go.

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Until Sun Aug 16

Yes + Toto

How perfect is it that you can sail a yacht right up to a Toto concert? The '80s power-ballad powerhouse behind "Hold the Line" and "Africa" teams up with prog pioneers Yes for a dadrock spectacular.

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Until Sun Aug 16

NOFX

One of the goofiest bands in the ultragoofy annals of SoCal pop-punk, NOFX is also one of the best and most enduring. Led by the whiny melodic genius of Fat Mike, the quarter-century-old L.A. outfit has made a habit of mixing trenchant politics and raw introspection with its trademark silliness, yielding sad, funny, eclectic, snot-nosed epics like 1994's Punk in Drublic and its most recent, 2012's Self Entitled. The gang is brought to the stage through Sirius XM's presentation of "Fat Wrecked for 25 Years", featuring other acts like ToyGuitar, Masked Intruder, Lagwagon and more.

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Until Mon Aug 17

James Murphy (DJ set)

Critics' pick

James Murphy, DFA-label founder and LCD Soundsystem mastermind, takes over Smart Bar. These days, the former frontman seems preoccupied with his efforts to turn NYC subway turnstiles into musical instruments, but his DJ sets are always filled with dance floor gems.

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Until Fri Aug 21

Disturbed

Making a return to the stage after a long hiatus that began in 2011, Chicago-based metal band Disturbed visits the House of Blues to play behind its most recent album Immortalized.

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Until Fri Aug 21

One Direction

By August 2015, 1D will have reached the half-decade mark. That's dangerously close to the expiration date for boy bands. That explains why tickets for their concerts go on sale nearly a year in advance: Hook 'em while they still care.

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Until Sun Aug 23

The Vaccines

Brash U.K. pop-rock stylists the Vaccines hit town behind a wildly hooky new disc, English Graffiti. The band has an outsize persona—"It makes me incredibly frustrated when people can’t see how honest I am and how good I am at writing songs," frontman Justin Young once told NME—but the new songs are sleek, fun and effective enough to back up such claims.

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Until Tue Aug 25

Billy Joel

Critics' pick

Erstwhile angry young man Billy Joel—now an official Madison Square Garden franchise, like the Knicks and Rangers—is tacking on date after date in what's threatening to become an endless run.

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Until Thu Aug 27

Foo Fighters

Critics' pick

After debuting Sonic Highways at Cubby Bear last October, Dave Grohl and his arena rockin' crew return to Wrigleyville. Urge Overkill, Naked Raygun and Cheap Trick open, making this a Chicago love affair. Only without Chicago (the band). Tickets are also available for the rooftops.

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Until Sat Aug 29

Colleen Green + Jaill

Self-described "stoned songwriter" Colleen Green, linked to Hardly Art, showcases her fuzz-pop compositions, featuring buzzing drums and cutesy choruses that should illicit giggles from the rather ripped. Jangling indie rock outfit Jaill open the show.

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Until Mon Aug 31

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