Iron Maiden (September 12, Mandalay Bay Events Center) The British metal giants’ first Vegas show in 13 years is one of just seven 2013 U.S. dates and features the band’s familiar three-guitar lineup—Dave Murray, Adrian Smith and Janick Gers—along with founding bassist Steve Harris, longtime drummer Nicko McBrain and hallowed frontman Bruce Dickinson. We’re guessing Eddie will be there, too. With Megadeth.
iHeartRadio Music Festival (September 20 & 21, MGM Grand Garden Arena) Sure, the sets are shortened. And yes, with tickets to the third edition long sold out, you’ll have to troll StubHub or eBay to find a way in. But where else can popular-music fans find Katy Perry, Paul McCartney, Muse, Tiësto, Maroon 5, Tim McGraw and Robin Thicke all in one place? Only in their dreams. Oh, and at press time, tickets remained for the iHeartRadio Festival Village (September 21 across from the Luxor), headlined by Miley Cyrus. Go figure.
Phoenix (October 8, Boulevard Pool) France’s gold-certified indie popsters were scheduled to play the Cosmopolitan in April, a few days before they headlined Coachella’s middle night, before canceling here for unspecified reasons. The venue vowed to work on a new date—and delivered just a few months later, with a reasonable ticket price to boot ($35 and up).
Brian Wilson & Jeff Beck (October 18, the Pearl) This Hall of Fame pairing of U.S. songwriting genius and U.K. guitar god promises to be interesting, at the very least. Expect a set from Wilson, the brains behind Pet Sounds, Smile and other Beach Boys classics, another from ex-Yardbird Beck and closing collaborations between the two musicians.
Fuzz (October 24, Beauty Bar) Don’t recognize the name? How about this one: Ty Segall? The prolific SoCal garage-rocker, who just released another solo album (Sleeper) in August, has one more arriving October 1, the self-titled debut of Fuzz, a trio for which he drums and sings lead vocals. With CCR Headcleaner.
Life Is Beautiful Festival (October 26 & 27, streets of Downtown) The largest Vegas assemblage of touring acts this side of Vegoose features big names (The Killers, Kings of Leon, Beck, Imagine Dragons), critical darlings (Vampire Weekend, Alabama Shakes, Janelle Monáe) and under-the-radar picks (STS9, Haim, Robert DeLong), but don’t sleep on the fest’s Vegas-scene lineup, chock full of the top local talent around.
Nine Inch Nails (November 15 & 16, the Joint) We kinda believed Trent Reznor when he said his best-known project was done touring in 2009, but that doesn’t mean we’re sorry he broke his promise. NIN has a new album in its arsenal, but fans hoping for old favorites shouldn’t leave disappointed, based on recent setlists. With Explosions in the Sky.
Jessie Ware (November 22, House of Blues) There’s a dearth of surefire female stars hitting town this fall, so take a chance on a soulful up-and-comer endorsed by Pitchfork, Paste and the Onion’s A.V. Club, among a horde of others who positively reviewed last year’s debut full-length, Devotion.
Built to Spill (November 26, Vinyl) Boise’s indie vets don’t have a new album, but they do have a new lineup—yes, still headed by singer/songwriter/guitarist Doug Martsch—and one of the most consistent catalogs in recent rock history. If you don’t know ’em, find a copy of Perfect From Now On, stat. With Slam Dunk, Genders.
Justin Timberlake (September 29 & 30, MGM Grand Garden Arena) JT’s 2007 stop at the same venue was quite the party, and he’s added two albums—March’s excellent The 20/20 Experience and its September 30 follow-up—to his pop arsenal since then. Show up ready to rock your body, ’cause if there’s any show not made for sitting still, this is it.
Also: Arturo Sandoval (September 13 & 14, Smith Center); Blink-182 (September 19, Boulevard Pool); Adam Ant (September 20, Hard Rock Cafe/Strip); Jimmy Eat World (September 25, House of Blues); Depeche Mode (October 6, the Pearl); Pet Shop Boys (October 11, the Joint); Gogol Bordello (October 12, Boulevard Pool); Frank Turner (October 12, Hard Rock Cafe/Strip); Supersuckers (October 16, LVCS); Surfer Blood (October 18, Beauty Bar); Jason Aldean (October 20, MGM Grand); AFI (October 26, House of Blues); Avenged Sevenfold (October 26, Mandalay Bay).