Is Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme human? Not in a corny "rock god" way, but seriously, what does it take to stop this guy? Events like the departure of a founding band member, marriage, or fatherhood derail many puny mortal musicians. Homme experienced all these recently, but he keeps going, Terminator-like, and the rock gets better. Tight but loose, snide and sly, the new Era Vulgaris jumps forward by hearkening back to the blasé, jammy vibe of the killer Queens' eponymous debut. Era rawks hard on riff-heavy "Sick, Sick, Sick" and "3's & 7's" (which could be outtakes from Songs for the Deaf), but also gets reflective and topical on "I'm a Designer," which laments "My generation's for sale/It's a steady job." Some song ideas are half-baked, like the band's target audience, but who cares? The tunes will be even more fun live, when the mercurial Homme can burn (or crash) musically and snarl insults at hecklers—and that's just the first song. With Cage the Elephant. This show was relocated to First Avenue from Myth Nightclub, and all tickets from Myth Nightclub will be honored. $30. All Ages. 6:30 p.m. 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612.332.1775. — Catherine Clements

Minnesota State Fair Grandstand

Don't be confused—fried things + health-depreciating items on sticks = delicious. Fancified girl from the ghetto + addicting pop hooks = fergalicious. Fergie at the fair is a perfect way to get your fill of guilty pleasures all in a matter of hours. The token hot chick from the Black Eyed Peas, Fergie is out on her own, playing songs everyone loves (but won't admit to loving). Since releasing her album, Dutchess, Stacy "Fergie" Ferguson has topped pop charts with a unique blend of hip hop and sass, skanking up her tomboy image while managing to stay "glamorous." Live on the mic, Fergie actually sounds like her recorded self, contrary to fellow ladies in her genre. She's not much of a dancer, but she'll most likely bring along some pals who can shake their humps and lumps efficiently. Prepare to watch your language around the swarms of little ones who are sure to buy up most of the spendy tickets with daddy's money. With Rooney. $32-$52. 7:30 p.m. 1265 Snelling Ave. N., St. Paul; 651.642.2262. —Amber Shadewald


Fountains of Wayne/Suicide Commandos
Minnesota State Fair Grandstand
Stacy's mom has got it goin' on
Courtesy of the Bangles
Stacy's mom has got it goin' on

It's certainly hard to imagine the Minneapolis music scene without bands like Hüsker Dü and the 'Mats, but the Minneapolis punk scene would have been impossible without Suicide Commandos coming along first. The hooks, riffs, and melody are generally obscured by a prison yard-thick wall of noise and distortion, but they're there and they're sharp—once you suss them out. Listen even closer and you can hear their echoes in all the Minneapolis bands that followed in their wake. Years ago—way back in the mid-'90s—New York City's Fountains of Wayne seemed to be everywhere with "Radiation Vibe," from the self-titled debut album that made them seem invincible. Afterward, they proceeded to drop off the face of the planet. In 2003, they came roaring back with the ode to MILFs, "Stacy's Mom," and suddenly they really were everywhere, with an album full of monster hooks and big, pop-rock guitar anthems. They're back with more of the same on Traffic and Weather, and even if the lyrics are a bit of a stretch (Sorry, but "We belong together/Like traffic and weather" isn't going to convince a girl to come back to you) and they get knocked for being too sugary at times, there's just enough dour discontent to balance it out. Strange pairing? Strange venue for said pairing? Well, yes, on both counts, in a social experiment sort of way, really. Free. 7:30 p.m. 1265 Snelling Ave. N., St. Paul; 651.642.2262. —Pat O'Brien

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