Sex in the City
John Lydon 's incisively witty keynote address at NXNE shows that living in sunny Malibu hasn't baked all the old piss 'n' vinegar out of him. Hopefully, the former Mr. Rotten can convert some of that bitterness into raw energy for the Sex Pistols summer cash grab... er, concert tour that rolls into Molson Amphitheatre August 25. That's the day after their arch-nemesis, Boston , play the same venue, which may provide excellent research data for social anthropologists investigating the migration patterns of 70s rock dinosaurs. $10.21-$35.50. 416-870-8000.
Even when Björk was at the peak of her popularity, an out-of-the-way show at Olympic Island would've been a risky venture. Even more so now, when the quirky ice goddess has no hot new tune on the airwaves to generate buzz. So why is she touring at the moment? It seems Bjork's North American dates are tied only to the release of a series of eight archival DVDs, namely Vespertine Live 2001, documenting a Royal Opera House show from December 2001; her video greatest hits, Volumen 1993-2002; the missing videos, Volumen Plus; and a collection of various performance footage, Live Box 1993-2002. Perhaps instead of the Olympic Island blowout, Bjork would've been better off booking a weekend of home movie nights at the Bloor Cinema. August 26. $62.50 plus $5 ferry fee. 416-870-8000.
Detroit's White Stripes might be the most popular male-female rock 'n' roll duo on the planet, but the Kills are definitely the nastiest. What makes the gruesome UK-based twosome of Hotel and VV so darn ornery is anyone's guess. The cat lady across the street says, "Too much deep-fried cod can make anyone unpleasant," but whatever's behind it, they certainly put their surly nature to good use on their belligerent and hard-bashing Keep On Your Mean Side (Rough Trade) disc. The Kills' Horseshoe debut July 21 should be a riot. $8.50 advance, $10 door. 370 Queen West. 416-598-4753.
Putting aside all the concerns about the representation of Canucks and blues at the Toronto Bluesfest , the four-day roots music extravaganza (July 23-July 27) at Exhibition Place and other venues is shaping up as one of the summer's big blowouts. For musical variety and marquee talent, it's hard to beat a lineup that includes George Clinton & Parliament-Funkadelic , Sheryl Crow , John Hiatt , Richard Thompson , Blind Boys of Alabama , Bela Fleck , Alejandro Escovedo , David Lindley and Howe Gelb . Of course, then there are the blues artists, including Robert Cray , Eddy "The Chief" Clearwater , Walter "Wolfman" Washington , Anson Funderburgh , Big Bill Morganfield and others. Blues or not, that's a seriously stacked shindig, pardner. $20-$25, wristband $55. 416-870-8000. www.torontobluesfest.com
Sure, the Fleshtones have been out of the spotlight for a minute, but their righteously rockin' new Do You Swing? (Yep Roc) disc - recorded with the dirt left in by Southern Culture 's Rick Miller - shows that you can never count out Peter Zaremba and his Brooklyn codgers. Fans of the Strokes, (the Strokes themselves, for that matter) would be well advised to stop by the Horseshoe July 5, where the Fleshtones will be conducting a rock 'n' roll master class in ass-kicking and wall-shaking.
It'll be a particularly special event as the openers, the Raving Mojos , will be reunited with former bassist Ken Fox (currently in the Fleshtones) and original drummer Myles Dutton for one night only. $8.50 advance, $10 door. 370 Queen West. 416-598-4753.