Dixie Chicks stop in Las Vegas on their first U.S. tour in 10 years
In the 10 years since the Dixie Chicks released their last studio album, 2006’s Taking the Long Way, no other country group has achieved the same level of critical and commercial success, combined with social activism. As popular and beloved as mainstream country music may be, it comes off mostly as a conservative genre (not just in a political sense), and the void left by the Dixie Chicks is still being felt. Since the end of the group’s last major tour in 2006, the Chicks have been on a semi-permanent hiatus, and this year’s DCX MMXVI World Tour marks the first time in a decade they’ve headlined a U.S. tour.
Although members Natalie Maines, Emily Robison and Martie Maguire have put out their own music during the interim period (Maines released a solo album in 2013, and Robison and Maguire have released two albums as the Court Yard Hounds), the Chicks are sticking to classic material on this tour, along with a range of covers (including unconventional choices like Lana Del Rey and Beyoncé). They aren’t shying away from social commentary, either, with videos tied to the election and a pointed message during domestic violence-themed hit “Goodbye Earl.”.
The Chicks are still a country act, but after backlash from the country-music community following their 2003 onstage criticism of President George W. Bush, they’ve found themselves more at home among rockers, and the current tour features a more rock-heavy take on familiar Chicks songs like “The Long Way Around” and “Not Ready to Make Nice.” But it also features an acoustic bluegrass segment, keeping the Chicks in touch with their roots while expanding their sound. If the country world isn’t going to fill their shoes, then it’s a good thing the Dixie Chicks are back to do it themselves.
T-Mobile Arena, 7 p.m. July 16, starting at $54 plus tax and fee. 888.929.7849