The Best Shows Hitting Vancouver in May 2023

Check out performances by Shania Twain, Crowded House, plus many more this month

Check out performances by Shania Twain, Crowded House, plus many more this month

1. Crowded House at The Orpheum – Tuesday, May 2

Rising from the ashes of Split Enz one year after their disbanding, Kiwi/Aussie favourites Crowded House became one Australasia’s most popular exports in the mid-1980s, eventually selling in excess of 15 million albums worldwide. Vocalist/guitarist/principal songwriter Neil Finn (whom you may have caught filling one of Lindsey Buckingham’s shoes alongside Mike Campbell last time Fleetwood Mac was in town) has kept the band a family affair by recruiting his two sons Liam and Elroy on guitar and drums respectively, along with original bassist Nick Seymour and producer Mitchell Froom on keys. Although I’m sure you can expect the House to dig into their catalogue to perform throwback hits like “Something So Strong” and “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” these guys are not content to tour on their status as a legacy act. As such, in 2021 they released Dreamers Are Waiting, their first brand spanking new album in over a decade which was deemed excellent enough to garner an ARIA Music Award for Best Adult Contemporary Album and pin them squarely at No. 2 on both the Australian and New Zealand album charts. Ticket availability is sparse, so if you’re a Gen-Xer suffering through healthy pangs of nostalgia, take my advice and get on that link ASAP.
Tickets from $78.80

2. Shania Twain at Rogers Arena – Tuesday, May 2 and Wednesday, May 3

Flashback to the CMT Awards in early April and we have to contend with (likely very jealous) idiots criticizing the way a woman dresses. I personally find it ridiculous that Shania Twain should have to defend her choice of wardrobe, but it’s 2023 and here we are. Are you kidding me? We’re talking about the undisputed Queen of Country Pop here, and are you legally blind? Give me a break. The talented 57-year-old stunner clapped back with the statement, “Life is too short to wear boring clothes,” and she’s damn right. Don’t you even dare, and let’s face it, this woman has sold over 100 million records, holding the title of best-selling female artist in country music history, and don’t forget she sits comfortably amongst the best-selling music artists… OF… ALL… TIME! Haters gonna hate. I say “Let’s Go, Girls!”
Tickets from $62

3. Greg Puciato at Rickshaw Theatre – Saturday, May 6

A year ago, we travelled down to Seattle to catch a show from one of my all-time favourite artists, Jerry Cantrell from Alice in Chains. One would surmise with three solo albums (one of which is a nothing short of brilliant and often overlooked double), Jerry would have enough material of his own to fill the gig. But in a questionable manoeuvre, he recruited Dillinger Escape Plan’s frontman Greg Puciato to come with and deliver a set that leaned quite heavily on Alice’s material. That’s strange because AIC exists and still tours, so why would he bother? But anyway, Puciato bears a striking and somewhat off-putting resemblance to the late Chester Bennington from Linkin Park, both in physical presence as well as voice. Do I like Dillinger? No. Do I enjoy Linkin Park. Also no. Do I consider it appropriate to listen to anyone other than William DuVall covering Layne Staley’s vocals? Still no. But hey, it might be your thing, so who am I to judge? I would just hope on this night he chooses to stay away from Alice, that’s all I’m saying.
Tickets from $36

4. Dermot Kennedy at Rogers Arena – Saturday, May 6

Irish singer-songwriter Dermot Kennedy began his career as a busker on the streets of Dublin when he was just 17 years old. Known primarily as a folk artist and citing influences such as Ray LaMontagne and David Gray, the 31-year-old has recently taken to melding that style with hip-hop, notably in his collaborative work with famed producer Mike Dean. If that seems like an odd mix to you, well, that’s because it actually is. But fear not, folk fans, because even though Kennedy’s most recent work, Sonder sometimes touches on infectious pop hooks, he still thoroughly relies on his innate ability to draw out the teary feels. I’m speaking from experience as it’s a thing that blindsided me on a recent Delta flight to LAX when I stumbled upon “Something to Someone” on their inflight entertainment system and it seemed like the most inopportune moment for somebody to start slicing onions nearby. I mean, who does that?
Tickets from $61

5. Moonspell at The Cobalt – Sunday, May 14

Originally planned for last year (but you know, weird stuff happened over the past few), Moonspell is finally bringing their 30th anniversary tour to our shores. OK, well, it’s technically their 31st anniversary and they’re calling it the “American Full Moon” tour. Would it have killed them to throw the word “North” ahead of it? There are three Canadian dates, after all. Meh, whatever. The Portuguese gothic/black/doom/melodic/death metal outfit doesn’t exactly drop into town too often, and from what I can gather, it’s been about five years since their last visit. This time around, they’re bringing along not one but four heavy-hitting openers: Swedish symphonic metal experts Eleine, Houston’s goth/prog quartet Oceans of Slumber, Portland’s melodic metalers Vintersea, and Vancouver’s own purveyors of epic/melodic/death metal Atavistia. Five acts for $30? Seriously? Do the math and you’ll realize that it’s a struggle to purchase a decent latte for the price of seeing just one band!
Tickets from $30

For more upcoming local concerts, visit