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Best upcoming live music and concerts in Barcelona

Your guide to the best of who's playing and where to go for the best gigs and concerts in Barcelona

By Borja Duñó and Jan Fleischer
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Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that events are still happening. 

Barcelona is a city brimming with music that spans genres. Concert halls, bars, and big clubs invite all kinds of acts to their stages, from freshly pressed indie bands to globally famous international superstars. To make sure you don't miss any of your favourites, including major festivals, check here for our top picks for the best live music and concerts in Barcelona.

Live music and concert highlights in Barcelona

Elton John

Music Pop Palau Sant Jordi, Sants - Montjuïc

Sir Elton John, one of the most acclaimed artists in all of pop history, announced he was retiring from performing live more than a year ago. We weren't sure if it was really true because he's still going strong and could carry on for years to come if he wanted to. But just in case he means business, pay attention to this: John's 'Farewell Yellow Brick Road' tour includes two consecutive dates in Barcelona's Palau Sant Jordi. From his debut in 1969, John has sold millions of albums, and you won't want to miss the chance to hear him performing huge hits that have thrived over 50 years of the artist's career.

Alanis Morissette
© Matthew Welch

Alanis Morissette + Liz Phair

Music Pop Palau Sant Jordi, Sants - Montjuïc

Alanis Morissette's ninth studio album, 'Such Pretty Forks in the Road', is set to be released May 2020, though her third LP, 'Jagged Little Pill' (1995), which came out with she was just 21 years old, is the one we'll never forget. And how could we? It was in the American Billboard top 20 for more than a year, and sold over 33 million copies. The globally successful record featured massive hits like 'You Oughta Know', 'Hand in My Pocket', 'Ironic' and 'You Learn', and earned Morissette five Grammys. Opening for her is Liz Phair, another big indie star of the 1990s, whose debut album, 'Exile in Guyville' was released to critical acclaim in 1993.

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Brothers in Band
Javi Maroño

Brothers in Band

Music Pop BARTS (Barcelona Arts on Stage), El Raval

Some say Brothers in Band are the best Dire Straits tribute band around, so if you're a fan of the original, you won't want to miss the homage paid by these musicians who play the greatest hits of Dire Straits from 1978 to 1991. They're so good that Guy Fletcher himself (who played keyboards with Dire Straits and Mark Knopfler since 1984) once had a hard time telling them from the original. Now Brothers in Band are back at BARTS with 'Alchemy Dire Straits Re-Live', a show that takes us to the legendary live performance that the British group recorded at London's Hammersmith Odeon in 1983.

Princess Nokia
Foto: Daniela Spector

Princess Nokia

Music Rap, hip hop and R&B Bikini, Les Corts

Singer and songwriter Princess Nokia, aka Destiny Nicole Ortiz, is a multifaceted New York artist who's back in Barcelona with her mix of hip hop, tribal rhythms and R&B that creates an exciting and crossover of sounds. She's already released two albums this year, and she's here to present both 'Everything Sucks' and 'Everything Is Beautiful'. Optimists and pessimists all welcome here!

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Omar Sosa & Yilian Cañizares Aguas Trio
Omar Sosa & Yilian Cañizares Aguas Trio

Omar Sosa & Yilian Cañizares Aguas Trio with Gustavo Ovalles

Music Latin and world BARTS (Barcelona Arts on Stage), El Raval

Cuban pianist and Barcelona resident Omar Sosa, along with his Aguas Trio, mix Afro-Cuban roots with classical and jazz music in this concert that celebrates Earth Hour, an initiative from the World Wide Fund for Nature. Accompanying Sosa is Cuban musician Yilian Cañizares on violin and vocals, and Venezuelan Gustavo Ovalles on percussion.

India Martínez

Music Pop Auditori Fòrum, Diagonal Mar i el Front Marítim del Poblenou

Cordoba's India Martínez, one of the top vocalists on the current Spanish pop scene, comes to the Auditori at the Fòrum with her eighth album, 'Palmeras' (2019). With her own style that's between melodic song and flamenco pop, Martínez has also managed to incorporate urban music without leaving her true essence behind.

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Valery Gergiev
Ibercamera

Verdi's Requiem

Music Classical and opera L'Auditori, Eixample

Valery Gergiev comes to L'Auditori to conduct one of the most impressive masses of the dead ever written. It's a striking work in the hands of one of the great conductors of our time. The concert, which is part of the Ibercamera cycle, also features a quartet of vocal soloists, the Cor Ibercamera – prepared specifically for this concert by Mireia Barrera – and the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra of Saint Petersburg.

Bon Iver
Foto: Graham Tolbert & Crystal Quinn

Bon Iver

Music Rock and indie Palau Sant Jordi, Sants - Montjuïc

In 2019, Bon Iver released one of the most anticipated albums of the summer: 'i,i' is the fourth album of Justin Vernon's most celebrated project. Although his work with vocal expression – with all kinds of filters and electronic effects – remains paramount in his music, Bon Iver has increasingly become a live band, which is reflected more than ever in the sound of 'i,i'. 
(This date was moved from April 17.)

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Dua Lipa
Foto: Live Nation

Dua Lipa

Music Pop Palau Sant Jordi, Sants - Montjuïc

Dua Lipa killed it in 2019 with one of the year's undisputed hits, 'Don't Start Now'. This dancefloor smash has got everything that makes a three-minute track irresistible: '80s electropop beats and synthesizers and disco music straight out of the '70s. It's virtually impossible to stand still when you hear it, and that's just a preview of Lipa's second album, 'Future Nostalgia' (2020). Lipa makes her Barcelona debut on the second stop of the album tour, which kicks off in Madrid.

Agnes Obel
Alex-Brüel-Flagstad

Agnes Obel

Music Pop BARTS (Barcelona Arts on Stage), El Raval

Danish singer-songwriter Agnes Obel presents her fourth album, 'Myopia' (2020), where she once again brings us into her music world, which takes influences from artists such as Roy Orbison, Erik Satie, PJ Harvey, Claude Debussy and Joni Mitchell, and even from Alfred Hitchcock's cinematography. She's got a wonderful and enveloping yet delicate voice, and skills on the piano, as she's already proven on her debut album, 'Philharmonics' (2010) and follow-ups, 'Aventine' (2013) and 'Citizen of Glass' (2016).

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Bad Religion + Suicidal Tendencies + Millencolin + Blowfuse + The Vandals

Music Punk and metal Poble Espanyol, Sants - Montjuïc

Legends of melodic hardcore, California-born Bad Religion return to Barcelona to celebrate their 40th anniversary. A true icon on the worldwide punk scene, the band are giving us a concert at Poble Espanyol with deluxe opening acts: fellow Californians Suicidal Tendencies and The Vandals, the Sweden's Millencolin, and the Blowfuse from right here in Catalonia. Greg Graffin and company review their long discography, including their latest album, 'Age of Unreason' (2019).

Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds

Music Pop Palau Sant Jordi, Sants - Montjuïc

They've been to Barcelona several times before, in intimate venues and huge festivals such as Primavera Sound, but never before have they performed outside the festival setting in a space as large as Palau Sant Jordi. This marks a new milestone for Australian singer/songwriter Nick Cave and his Bad Seeds (Warren Ellis, Martyn Casey, Thomas Wydler, Jim Sclavunos, George Vjestica and Toby Dammit), who aim to fill Sant Jordi with all the emotion and sadness they've created with 'Ghostseen' (2019), their 17th album, which seems to be, after 'Skeleton Tree' (2016), a very personal album for Cave following the death of his teenage son Arthur, in 2015. (This concert date was moved from April 26, 2020.)

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FKA Twigs
Photograph: Matthew Stone

Primavera Sound

Music Parc del Fòrum, Sant Martí

The 20th edition of Primavera Sound moves to 2021, and some of the big names announced at the start of June 2020 for the 2021 edition were already on the bill for 2020, and some are new. Among them are Charli XCX, FKA Twigs, Beck, Iggy Pop, Bad Bunny, Tyler the Creator, Massive Attack, Tame Impala, Gorillaz, The Strokes, Jorja Smith, Koffee, Pavement, Idles, Caribou, Bikini Kill, Chromatics, Dinosaur Jr., Yo La Tengo, Mavis Staples and Jeff Mills. Also taking the stage will be three biggies on the Catalan urban music scene – Bad Gyal, Yung Beef and C. Tanga.

Marc Anthony

Music Pop RCDE Stadium, Beyond Barcelona

Puerto Rican New Yorker and father of Jennifer Lopez's children, Marc Anthony, brings his Latin rhythm, salsa and charisma to Barcelona to present 'Opus' (2019), his first studio album in six years, and the eighth since 'Otra Nota' (1993) put him on the map as a recording star.

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The Chemical Brothers
Photograph: Sónar

Sónar

Music Dance and electronic Multiple venues

The 27th edition of Sónar and the 9th edition of Sónar+D have been moved from 2020 to 2021. As of June 2020, the organisation is working to reschedule as many of the artists and activities as possible that were set for the June 2020 dates into the 2021 dates. As always, the festival happenings are divided between Sónar by Day and Sónar by Night, with more than 100 shows, including the new immersive audiovisual show from The Chemical Brothers (confirmed for 2021), in which the British duo of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons mix their hits with songs from their new album 'No Geography' (2019). 

IRON MAIDEN
FOTO: JOHN McMURTRIE

Iron Maiden + Within Temptation

Music Estadi Olímpic de Montjuïc Lluís Companys (Olympic Stadium), Sants - Montjuïc

Attention heavy metal fans: Iron Maiden are playing just one date in Spain on their current tour, and it's July 25 at Barcelona's Olympic Stadium. The English outfit are on the European leg of their Legacy of the Beast greatest hits world tour that started in 2018. The biggest Iron Maiden concert in Barcelona to date will give you all their biggies – those tunes you've seemingly known forever and that have given birth to modern heavy metal. Get ready for a show full of pyrotechnics and theatrics: giant zombies, fencing combat, air raids and explosions, images from classic Iron Maiden songs onstage and more. The concert is set to be a festival metal that spans generations. It's promoted by Madness Live and Primavera Sound, and it's not the first time the famous festival has banked on heavy metal, but it is the first time they've put on a heavy metal stadium concert. Opening acts won't disappoint either: in Australian band Airbourne you'll hear influences by the likes of Aerosmith and fellow Aussies AC/DC; and out of New Zealand it's Within Temptation with their symphonic and melodic sounds.

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Belle and Sebastian
Photograph: Supplied

Vida

Music Pop La Masia d’en Cabanyes, Areas

The Vida music festival, which takes place in natural surrounds in nearby Vilanova i la Geltrú, has released some of the names that will appear in the 2021 line-up, which was moved from 2020. Among them are headliners such as Belle & Sebastian, Devendra Banhart, Black Pumas, Destroyer and Soccer Mommy. Also set to appear on Vida stages are !!! (Chk Chk Chk), Baxter Dury, Cupido, Damien Jurado, Jungle DJs, Maria Arnal & Marcel Bagés, Sen Senra and the guys who made a name for themselves during the quarantine, Stay Homas. Plus you can see Clara Peya, El Petit de Cal Eril, Enric Montefusco, Eve Owen, Ferran Palau and many more.

Two Door Cinema Club
Two Door Cinema Club

Cruïlla

Music Parc del Fòrum, Sant Martí

The 2020 edition of the Cruïlla music festival has been postponed to 2021, specifically to July 8, 9 and 10. The first confirmations for the new dates were released in May 2020 and include Two Door Cinema Club, Kase.O, Residente, Morcheeba, Of Monsters and Men, Sopa de Cabra, León Benavente, Novedades Carminha, Perotá Chingó, Lágrimas de Sangre, Fuel Fandango, Rayden, Djaikovski, Gertrudis, Ebri Knight, Siloé and Meritxell Nedderman. Tickets purchased for the 2020 edition will be valid in 2021. 

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