The weeks after Christmas leading up to the slow thaw of March are traditionally the music industry's slowest: There are only a handful of major albums released, and many touring acts opt to wait until the spring before heading back out on the road.
This isn't to say that there aren't a number of great performances and promising new releases to look forward to in the winter months, or that there's even more incredible music already scheduled to drop later in 2006. Here, then, is a chronological Top 10 of my most eagerly anticipated concerts in the new year, and a brief look ahead at more of what's to come on album and onstage.
9. March 30-31: Coldplay at the United Center: Nothing will top the moody British rockers performing at Metro circa the release of their excellent third album, "X & Y." But Coldplay remains one of the most vital acts currently playing the arenas, with a catalog strong enough to hold 22,000 people firmly in their thrall. Former Verve leader and Chris Martin hero Richard Ashcroft opens, and tickets are $41.50-$81.50 through Ticketmaster.
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