Every summer, in addition to swarms of mosquitoes and fanny-packed tourists, New England hosts a massive invasion of live music. And even when you can barely walk a block without stumbling upon some outdoor concert, there's no need to settle for what's happening in your back yard — not when there are so many shows worth crossing state lines for this year. Want to take a weekend-long musical mini-vacation? Hit the road to see My Morning Jacket, Chromeo, and Atmosphere headline Maine's KahBang extravaganza; or drop by the 52nd annual Newport Folk Festival to see the Decemberists share a stage with Gogol Bordello. Consider the following an essential primer on what the Northeast has to offer this year — from such mind-expanding elder statesmen as the Flaming Lips and Dinosaur Jr., to the lush indie-pop sounds of Cults and Twin Sister, to the arena spectacles of Britney Spears, we've got you covered. Read on.



The Wilco-curated Solid Sound festival returns to Mass MoCA for three music-and-arts-soaked days in June. Its gargantuan line-up features two sets by the twangy Chicagoan curators themselves; must-see headliners like the Levon Helm Band, Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore, the Autumn Defense (featuring Wilco's John Stirratt and Patrick Sansone); plus appearances from newer acts like Brooklyn indie-rockers Here We Go Magic and noisy psychedelia from San Francisco's Sic Alps. On the comedy tip, you've got local boys John Hodgman and Eugene Mirman, plus cheese making, falconry (!), and something called "impossible exhibition."

Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, 87 Marshall St, North Adams, MA | $116 | 413.662.2111

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