Sequel to Keir’s Summer Yuppie Concert Series 2009 and Keir’s All-Star Concert Series, 2014 (Part 1 and Part 2), here’s a postcard from eight shows we saw this year (including 4 within 8 days!):

St. Vincent (Orpheum L.A., 4/11/18)
Her prep for Coachella later in the week. Flashy and tight in almost exactly one hour. Much better than the (very good!) 2014 stop at the Wiltern.

U2 (The Forum, Inglewood 5/15/18)
Second time for these guys at this venue within three years; an oddly low-energy show overall with a few great ’90s surprises like “Acrobat” and “Staring at the Sun.”

Neko Case (Greek Theatre L.A., 6/3/18)
Snapped up the new album onsite for maximum Neko profit. Ditched Ray LaMontagne before he came onstage (for like the 3rd time) but Neko was lovely as always, even as an opener.

Harry Styles (The Forum, Inglewood 7/14/18)
This one was for Em, on the final gig of this particular tour, but I think it was the most energy I’ve ever experienced at a show—from crowd and performer.

Cracker (Discovery Ventura, 9/14/18)
Dragged Tony and Gretchen away from their kids for this one, at a bowling alley (?!) where Lowery & Co. covered Dylan (“The Man in Me” from Lebowski)!

The War on Drugs (Hollywood Bowl, L.A. 9/16/18)
Band was good, as always—I think this was the fifth time we’d seen them—but the crowd at these shows escalates in suckitude the bigger this band gets. However, we got all 12 minutes of “Thinking of a Place” so it was a wash.

The National with Phoebe Bridgers
(Hollywood Palladium L.A. 9/21/18, Santa Barbara Bowl 9/22/18)
Back to back shows, very different from each other. Missed Phoebe Bridgers at the Palladium due to traffic, but the headliners made up for it (and an ok 2014 show). The SB Bowl show this time was fantastic and rain-free, though, and we caught all of it!

Courtney Barnett with Waxahatchee (Greek Theatre L.A., 10/5/18)
First time seeing each of these performers and they both killed it, especially Barnett. Her set was new-album heavy but the take on “Anonymous Club” was a quiet revelation.

Neko Case (Fremont SLO 12/5/18 and Orpheum L.A., 12/7/18)
Back to back Neko shows for the second and third time we saw her this year—and both fabulously full sets this time instead of an opener slot like June. Met my stepdad for the SLO show as he drove back north.