They Might Be Giants, Sleep Token, Noah Kahan highlight top Pittsburgh concerts in May (2024)

Pittsburgh’s concert season is starting to pick up steam, with the year’s first Pavilion at Star Lake show, which has been been sold out for months. Other highlights include a sold-out three night stand by a quirky alternative rock band, as well as the first arena show for a rising metal band (also sold out).

Top concerts

May 9-11: They Might Be Giants at Mr. Smalls Theatre

They Might Be Giants will be highlighting different albums from their 42-year career on their upcoming Midwest tour, which opens with three nights in Pittsburgh.

Their tour hits eight cities — with 11 of 15 shows already sold out — for the band known for songs like “Birdhouse in Your Soul,” “Istanbul (Not Constantinople)” and the theme from “Malcolm in the Middle.”

“We’ve expanded to an eight-piece band. There’s a whole set of repertoire that we’ve put together with the horns,” John Flansburgh told the Milwaukee Record. “It really is a very big show with a lot of different kinds of musical approaches. There’s repertoire we never could have done in the past, and it’s very effective now.

Read more: ‘We’ll be spotlighting different albums from night to night’: They Might Be Giants prep ‘Big Show’ tour

May 19: Sleep Token, Empire State Bastard at Petersen Events Center

The masked members of alt metal group Sleep Token have managed to maintain their anonymity while taking the music world by storm.

With new costumes that debuted late last year to symbolize a new era, the genre-bending metal band’s “Take Me Back to Eden” was named best album by Metal Hammer, Revolver and Rock Sound.

The band’s mythology involved a deity named “Sleep,” with the band’s frontman Vessel, the creator of most of the band’s music. With only two interviews since the band’s formation, not much insight into the band exists beyond pre-recorded stage banter.

“They need to be able to project themselves onto this, without anyone else’s identity getting in the way,” Vessel told a 2023 crowd. “In turn, I need to be able to show my true self to them in a way that does not compromise their ability to connect.”

Read more: Sleep Token’s stage banter reveals Vessel’s ‘need to be able to show my true self’

May 29: Noah Kahan at the Pavilion at Star Lake

Singer-songwriter Noah Kahan is opening the season at the Pavilion at Star Lake.

Kahan, who was nominated for Best New Artist at the 2024 Grammys, rose to fame with 2022’s “Stick Season.” His recent high-profile appearances, include concerts with Olivia Rodrigo and a stop on “Sesame Street.” Through it all, he’s been open about his mental health.

“That’s my fundamental struggle with antidepressants,” Kahan told Tom Power in an interview. “A lot of times I feel like the battle is trying to be creative versus being happy. Would I rather be happy and a little numb or really depressed and creative, but not happy at all?”

Read more: Why Noah Kahan worried his song ‘Growing Sideways’ was sending out a ‘false message’ about his mental health

Sold-out shows

May 3: Matt Nathanson at City Winery Pittsburgh

Matt Nathanson, a singer-songwriter from New England, is best known for his song “Come On Get Higher.”

May 4: Citizen Soldier, Icon for Hire, Halocene at Jergel’s

Citizen Soldier, a Utah band started when singer Jake Segura wrote a song in a psychiatric hospital, brings its Save Your Story tour to the Pittsburgh area.

May 8: Hawthorne Heights, Bike Route at City Winery Pittsburgh

The emo quartet will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of their album, “The Silence in Black and White,” in a full acoustic performance.

May 17: The Amity Affliction, Currents, Dying Wish, Mugshot at Roxian Theatre

The Australian post-hardcore band will be playing “Let the Ocean Take Me” to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

May 20: Matthew Morrison at Greer Cabaret Theater

Actor/singer Matthew Morrison, best known for his role on Fox’s “Glee,” has also starred in “Hairspray,” “Footloose” and “Finding Neverland” on Broadway.

Other notable shows

May 1: Uriah Heep, Saxon at Roxian Theatre

May 2: The Postal Service, Death Cab For Cutie, Slow Pulp at Petersen Events Center

May 3: Brandon Lake, Doe at Petersen Events Center

May 3: The Temptations, The Four Tops at Benedum Center

May 6: The Messthetics and James Brandon Lewis, Else Collective at Club Cafe

May 7: The Decemberists, Ratboys at Stage AE

May 10: Social Distortion, Bad Religion, The Lovebombs at Stage AE

May 10: John Hiatt, Nick Guckert at Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall

May 14: Amy Grant at Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall

May 15: NF at PPG Paints Arena

May 17: Better Than Ezra at Rivers Casino Events Center

May 17: Babehoven, Greg Mendez, Merce Lemon at Club Cafe

May 18: Greta Van Fleet, Geese at PPG Paints Arena

May 18: Helmet, Cro-Mags at Spirit Hall

May 21: P.O.D., Bad Wolves, Norma Jean, Blind Channel at Preserving Underground

May 21: John Garcia, Jared James Nichols, Telekinetic Yeti, Left Lane Cruiser at Jergel’s

May 23: Heart, Cheap Trick at PPG Paints Arena

May 23: Everclear, Truckstop, Turbo Lovers at Jergel’s

May 25: Joe Grushecky & the Houserockers at Bottlerocket Social Hall

May 28: Sebastian Bach at Jergel’s

Mike Palm is a TribLive digital producer who also writes music reviews and features. A Westmoreland County native, he joined the Trib in 2001, where he spent years on the sports copy desk, including serving as night sports editor. He has been with the multimedia staff since 2013. He can be reached at

They Might Be Giants, Sleep Token, Noah Kahan highlight top Pittsburgh concerts in May (2024)


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