The Best Shows Hitting Vancouver in June 2022

From award-winning Canadian crooners to America's favourite “quirky girl”, it's all happening this month

From award-winning Canadian crooners to America’s favourite “quirky girl”, it’s all happening this month

1. The Pineapple Thief at Rickshaw Theatre – Friday, June 3

PT3Facebook/The Pineapple ThiefIf you failed to catch The Pineapple Thief last time they were here shortly before the world shut down, you missed a great one. Fear not, because you’ve been gifted the opportunity to remedy that gaffe as the UK prog outfit returns to the Rickshaw for one night only. Often compared to Radiohead (which is a darn shame because I’m the one person on the planet who can’t stand themdon’t @ me!) and Porcupine Tree (which is awesome because they’re amazing and I’m obsessed by themfeel free to @ me!), their always-evolving soundscape strikes a delicate balance between sophisticated progressive rock and lush ambient interludes. For those of us who were in attendance three years ago, we’ll all be on the lookout to see if drummer Gavin Harrison (also of the fabulous Porcupine Tree and King Crimson, because he has nothing better to do) once again employs the use of a call bell to alert frontman Bruce Soord of any erroneous errors he might commit. In true British style, it’s all in the name of musical perfection and comedic relief, and it’s just a really good time.
Tickets from $46.61

2. Ólafur Arnalds at Massey Theatre – Wednesday, June 8

Ólafur ArnaldsFacebook/Ólafur ArnaldsIf there was anything cool to come out of the boredom of the pandemic (for myself, anyway), it was the opportunity to stumble across previously undiscovered music on YouTube. Ólafur Arnalds was one such artist, and as the textured, atmospheric instrumentation rolled out, the journey became instantly mesmerizing, and as you might guess, the rabbit hole was deep. The 35-year-old Icelandic multi-instrumentalist started his career in the early 2000s as a drummer in a hardcore punk band, so it’s surprising to see where he’s at now, mixing piano and strings with loops and beats. He was recently nominated at the 64th Annual Grammy Awards in the Best Dance/Electronic category, but you’ll be shocked to find out his albums are actually filed under the classical section of any given record store. Go figure. The guy is an enigma, for sure, so don’t miss this chance to figure out what he’s all about as he performs selections from his latest monumental release, some kind of peace.
Tickets from $56

3. Primus at Orpheum Theatre – Sunday, June 12

PrimusFacebook/PrimusRush fans unite! No, obviously, we’ll never see Canada’s greatest power trio (sorry, all respect to Triumph) perform live again. And no, all those people thinking Mike Portnoy could ever fill Neil Peart’s shoes can just step off right now. Don’t even try. I’ll fight you, and you’ll never win! But, anyway, Bay Area prog-alt-funk-metal three-piece Primus is set to offer homage to Rush’s 1977 opus A Farewell to Kings in its entirety, following a set of their own music to set the tone. This will be no easy feat, but as frontman Les Claypool states, they’re all in to pay tribute to a band that has given them so much inspiration over the years, and being that the two bands are longtime friends, they’re just the guys to do it. This sounds like it may be a one-time thing, but I’m thinking if we all show up to offer our support, perhaps they just might think of doing something like this with the remainder of Rush’s albums. One can hope.
Tickets from $66.18

4. Jann Arden at Orpheum Theatre – Tuesday, June 14

Jann ArdenFacebook/Jann ArdenWell, she’s been making music for the past 30 years, but there’s so much more to Jann Arden than that (as if being an award-winning musician wasn’t enough!). To say the multi-talented singer/songwriter/actress/author/podcaster keeps herself extremely busy is an understatement. To date, she’s received a total of 19 Juno Award nominations (winning eight), she’s had 17 top-ten singles on the charts, she received a well-deserved star on Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2006, she’s written four bestselling memoirs, she’s the star of her own eponymous comedy series on CTV, she was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, she was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada in 2017, she’s won two Canadian Screen Awards… should I go on? A genuine Canadian maverick, our girl Jann will return to Vancouver a few weeks after this gig to offer up an intimate conversation as she leads a top-notch group of keynote speakers at the inaugural Bloom Inspiration Summit presented by Simply Beautiful and Evalina Beauty on July 8th at the Westin Bayshore. Treat yourselfgo to both!
Tickets from $78.54

5. She & Him at Vogue Theatre – Saturday, June 18

She & HimFacebook/She & HimAs I compose this column in the unseasonably wet and cold days of May, I can’t help but feel we really need some warm sunshine to brighten up the seemingly endless bleakness. Along comes She & Him, the adorable collaboration between Portland’s indie-folk son M. Ward and America’s favourite “quirky girl” Zooey Deschanel. These two met on the set of the film The Go-getter (unrelated sidenote: I’ve always rolled my eyes at that term go-getter, I mean, it’s just somebody who goes and gets things? Big deal.), quickly discovering their shared interest in the pop music produced by George Martin, as well as the alternative-country style of groups like the Carter Family. Performing the lovely “When I Get to the Border” for the film’s end credits, the perfect alliance was born. This duo has been said to “make music for an eternal springtime,” and I think we could all use a little bit of that right now.
Tickets from $65.41

6. Bleachers at Orpheum Theatre – Thursday, June 23

BleachersFacebook/BleachersIf you’re like me and you’re late to the game, you may have caught Bleachers for the very first time on Saturday Night Live earlier this year and that particularly energetic performance had you dialing up Wiki to dig up more info. Turns out Bleachers is the brain child and official stage name of six-time Grammy-winning songwriter/producer Jack Antonoff, best known for working with artists such as Taylor Swift, Lorde and St. Vincent. I’ve got to admit, not one of the singers he’s worked with pique my interest even just a little bit, however, his solo blueprint (he performs the majority of the instrumentation in-studio, but is accompanied by a band for live performances) is terrific. This project is heavily influenced by ’80s pop music and the high-school-based films of John Hughes, so if that sounds like it could be your type of thing, you should make it your personal mission to get into this guy’s stuff.
Tickets from $58.30

7. The Glorious Sons at Commodore Ballroom – Wednesday, June 29 to Friday, July 1

The Glorious SonsFacebook/The Glorious SonsIt can’t be easy wearing the tag of second-best-known rock band to come out of Kingston, Ontario (if you have to ask who’s the best-known, chances are good you’re not Canadian and you may be required to revoke your passport), but The Glorious Sons take it all in stride. The double Juno- and double SiriusXM Indie-winning alt-rock outfit are pretty happy to be out there racking up radio plays as they go along (eight consecutive top 10 hits, if you’re keeping track), and they show no signs of losing momentum. The fact they’re close to selling out three dates at Granville’s favourite concert venue tells you they’re doing fine, thank you very much. So now it’s just up to you to pick a night to join them on the final dates of their “The Unfinished Business Tour” before they lock it all up for 2022.
Tickets from $71.25