Chance the Rapper, Bruce Springsteen, Carrie Underwood and Beyoncé are among the acts on the list

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It was a good year for live music in the Seattle area. Everyone from Beyoncé to Bruce Springsteen to Tacocat delivered memorable performances. Here are our reviewers picks for the best concerts of 2016:


Chance the Rapper, (Oct. 24, WaMu Theater): The stage was set for disappointment; the opening act didn’t inspire and the cavernous WaMu theater felt almost like a high school gymnasium. But then Chicago’s Chance the Rapper took the stage and literally made it and the venue’s floor shake — seismically — with his subversive raps, charming smile and otherworldly energy. Runner up: Black Sabbath (Feb. 6, Tacoma Dome) — Jake Uitti

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band (March 24, KeyArena): Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band played the entire “The River” album — and more — in a concert that at three-and-a-half hours might have even been better than their 1981 show for the same record. At 66, Springsteen proved that some rockers can age and still wow everyone in a sold-out arena. — Charles R. Cross

Carrie Underwood, (Sept. 8, KeyArena): Carrie Underwood delivered one of the most professional, exciting and well-performed arena shows I’ve seen in three years covering country music for the Times. Everything from her voice, her costume changes and the amazing, circular stage set in the exact middle of the arena were spot-on. — Owen R. Smith

Tacocat (Chop Suey, March 31) — Tacocat’s “Lost Time” release show filled Chop Suey to the brim with infectious, feminist pop-punk, inflatable aliens, and fans donning pounds of glitter and neon. Even better: The band had its own “Chaco Tacocat” ice cream treats they were giving out as part of the celebration. — Alexa Peters

Young Thug (Showbox, May 22): Young Thug has made several Seattle stops in the past couple of years, but his May performance at Showbox Market (the smallest local venue he’s performed at) was a near-90-minute set full of hits that kept the capacity crowd’s energy through the roof all night. Opener Lil Yachty joined Thug onstage to close his set, and it would’ve ran even longer if the venue didn’t have to cut the sound and turn the house lights on to make curfew. Runners up: Chief Keef (Neumos, Oct. 2), Drake & Future (Tacoma Dome, Sept. 16), Kanye West (KeyArena, Oct. 19) — Mike Ramos

Grouper (Washington Hall, July 30): With little more than her spectral vocals, electric guitar and a litany of effects pedals and tape decks, ambient artist Liz Harris conjured up torrents of sound that felt simultaneously huge and intimate. — Andrew Gospe

Beyoncé (CenturyLink Field, May 18): R&B diva Beyoncé delivered a stunning concert packed with songs from her three most recent albums, emphasizing material from her critically-acclaimed new recording, “Lemonade,” which explores issues of infidelity and female empowerment. Girl power was also evident in the 34-year-old singer’s choice of songs and in the backing of her tightly choreographed, all-female dance troupe, as well as the rabid enthusiasm of female fans often referred to as the BeyHive. Runner up: AC/DC (Tacoma Dome, Feb. 2) — Gene Stout