20 Wave Caps: The Best of The Week
Earl Sweatshirt, Photo: Paul R. Giarta
Last week was full of surprises, and this week is not much different. For the first time in a long time, we’ll have to sit back and wait for the next show at Fitzgerald’s, while we make other venues our homes. There’s plenty of talent rolling through Houston like Earl Sweatshirt pictured above, while our locals play on many of the same nights. Here’s where you should be hanging this week.
On Wednesday you can kick things off over at MKT Bar, when Second Lovers bassist Sean Spiller drops a DJ set. This could be a crazy performance, as bassists usually feel unnoticed in their bands. All kidding aside, Sean’s a good guy and it’s always intriguing to hear someone’s record collection. It’s an all ages affair that starts at 7:00 and is 100% FREE.
Hank & Cupcakes, Photo: Storey Condo
Walter’s & Houligan Collective will be throwing another $2.00 show, when they bring Brooklyn’s Hank & Cupcakes to town. The electro pop duo doesn’t use synthesizers, but their infectious sound is definitely catching fire from all over the world. Their latest album, last year’s “Cash For Gold” is pretty damn good. Houston indie synth pop trio, Camera Cult will be direct support on the show, while darkwave electronica duo Matsu Mixu will go on prior. Ex Carnival Talk vocalist Molly Gavin will drop her new project, A Girl Named Tiger as opener on the all ages show with doors at 8:00. The show has $2.00 Boombox Tacos, $2.00 Lonestar, and a $2.00 cover.
If metalcore is more your style, then you could head to Rudyard’s for NYC’s Mutoid Man. The three piece is here in support of their recently released album, “Bleeder.” Toronto’s Indian Handcrafts is there as well, and will bring the sludge rock from their sounds to life. Like a mix of Big Business & QOTSA, you might want to get there early to see these two. The 21 & up show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $10.00 and $12.00.
At Numbers they’ll celebrate DJ Damon Allen’s birthday with a show that should make people get down. Austin’s Mr Kitty will be on hand to make people dance with his electro pop synth sounds, while Houston’s Josiah Gabriel and DJ Selfy drop jams prior. DJ 2Felz will open things up with doors at 10:00, a $5.00 cover for under 21, and it’s 100% FREE for 21 & up.
Thursday it would be best to start off over at BBVA Compass Stadium, if you’re an Ed Sheeran fan. The massively popular English artist will be here in support of last year’s “X,” and should make for a fun show. Irish performer Jamie Lawson will open things up. The venue is offering a special ticket called back to school, making tickets $20.00 to $69.50. The gates are at 7:00.
The Nightingale Room will host the hip hop meets R&B flow of Lyric Michelle. So, I say that because she can rhyme hard while also holding down singing with a pretty amazing set of pipes. Her latest, a collab with Fat Tony called, “Directions” is pretty dope. She’ll have the electro pop from duo, Promenade on prior. The way in which these two featuring John from New York City Queens, drop pop fueled tunes is mesmerizing, and their debut EP; “Promenade” is as pretty as it is fun. The pop soul vocals of Ashley Toman will open the 21 & up show, and she’s definitely worth getting there early for. She’s been on my radar for some time now, and I can tell you that she has a great sound. The doors are at 7:00 and it’s 100% FREE.
Improv will have a special evening with Houston comedy four piece, The Whiskey Brothers. Between the four of these guys, there should be enough laughs to keep anyone who attends, in stitches for a long time to come. These guys have a successful podcast, they just taped a comedy special, and each one by themselves, John Wessling, Rob Mungle, Sam Demaris, and Slade Ham can pack a room. This show will either sell out or get close, so I’d suggest grabbing pre-sale tickets. The doors are at 7:15 and the tickets are $12.00, and the Jack Daniels sponsored show will have some sort of sampling for the adults in attendance.
Adam Bricks, Photo: Courtesy of Artist
The folk rock of Grisbee will be on full display over at Walter’s, when the band releases their full length album. You should check out their “Demos” from last year to get a feel for their sound that seems to be seriously underrated. Speaking of underrated, the soulful and powerful sounds of Houston’s Moji will be there to blow minds prior. I hear a lot about some bands more than others, but I feel like if you don’t like this trio, then you don’t like good music. Their “Desert Son” EP is a tour de force that’s worth more than a casual listen. Singer/songwriter Adam Bricks will be on hand to open things up with a full band in tow. Bricks is finishing up his follow up to his last release, “City Songs,” but you can hear his beautiful “Demos” while we all wait for the album release. This guy has such an amazing voice, you’re foolish to miss him perform. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $8.00 and $10.00.
Friday you should start things off over at House of Blues for the suburban Houston hip hop of Travi$ Scott. Tied to Kanye West, Scott’s heavily auto-tuned vocals and hit making production make him a must see act while you can still catch him. This guy is poppin’ off and should be bigger than most in our scene. His recently released single, “3500” features 2 Chainz & Future and is off the hook. There’s no word of an opener, but that will more than likely change. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $35.00 and $40.00.
If you’d rather travel back in hip hop time, then you could head to Arena Theatre for the hip hop of Master P. The No Limit label boss was the bomb about 10 years ago, and he’s making a comeback with a new album later this year. Known for the hit jam, “Make Em’ Say Ugh,” P Miller is and always has been a great performer. For the ladies, the R&B of H-Town will open things up, and will more than likely close out with their nineties hit, “Knockin’ Da’ Boots.” The all ages show has doors at 7:30 and tickets between $10.50 and $29.50.
Of Montreal, Photo: Cortney Armitage
Walter’s will be bringing back the magic and popular sounds of Of Montreal. So, I’ve seen these guys no less than five times, and that last time they were here at Walter’s was the best time I’ve seen them. The DIY production had costume changes and visuals that made them feel fresher than they did in the past. They’re always great live, and their latest album, “Aureate Gloom” is stripped down and still fresh. They’ll have the guitar heavy and trippy sounds of Florida’s Surface To Air Missive on as direct support. Two years ago, they dropped the album, “Surface To Air Missive,” that feels like doing acid and having a lucid dream at the same time. The last time, Of Montreal sold out Walter’s, so you might want to go the presale route. Tickets are between $17.00 and $20.00, with doors at 8:00 on the all ages show.
Warehouse Live will be bringing the Southern rock meets seventies swamp jam sounds of Canada’s The Sheepdogs to town. These guys sound like they time warped out of a Doobie Brothers recording session, and their latest single, “Same Old Feeling” is pretty damn amazing. The five piece should be pretty awesome to see live as well. The throwback seventies guitar heavy blues based sounds of Spring’s Vanilla Whale will be on hand to open things up. This four piece blows me away with their very well crafted and garagey seventies sound, and their 2023 release, “Greatest Hits” is really grand. The all ages show in the studio has doors at 8:00 and tickets for $15.00.
Continental Club will host the twelve piece MoTown revival of Austin’s The Nightowls. I say MoTown, but it’s more of a soul revival mixed with big band instrumentation. They’re a little white, but still grabbing all sorts of praise. Their latest album, “Good As Gold” from 2023 is pretty good. The 21 & up show has doors at 9:00 and tickets for $12.00.
If you’d rather make a comic’s day, you could head to MKT Bar for the Beta Bracket Comedy Contest from Beta Theater. In week four of twelve, the contest has already had some casualties fall off where Houston comics are all attempting to win $3,000.00. This week the host will be the one man party/laugh generator, Gabe Bravo, and the all ages show is a great way to support all things local. It all starts at 10:00, and it’s audience vote, meaning you could help make someone’s life better by voting for them. As always, it’s 100% FREE with free parking in the attached garage.
Over at Union Tavern you can get your electronica on, when the duo electro pop of Houston’s The Radio Broadcast performs. The synthy pop sounds of these two are enough to make you dance, and their sound is pretty infectious. Going on prior, will be the latest addition to the Wonky Power Records family, Rex Hudson. Rex mixes ambient sounds with heavy instrumentation in a style like you probably haven’t heard before. Rumor has it that his debut EP will drop before the end of the year, and he’s definitely an artist to keep an eye on. The techno meets electro pop of Just Boring Zombies will open the 21 & up show with doors at 10:00 and a 100% FREE cover.
On Saturday, you can kick the day off at the parking lot party also known as, First Saturdays Montrose over at Royal Oak. The daytime affair will feature plenty of vendors selling their wares alongside plenty of rad bites. There’s also live music from Austin Smith’s one man band, JERK; that I feel like everyone needs to see live to appreciate. It’s electronic, it’s guitar, it’s trippy vocals and more all rolled into one. The drone rock of Houston’s United Waves will also be on hand to add their indie goodness, as well as a Children of Pop DJ set, and a Promenade DJ set. There’s a charity dunk booth and so much more on the all ages event starting at noon and running until 6:00 pm.
Later on, your mom might want to catch the eighties hair metal of LA’s Motley Crue one last time at Toyota Center. So, I’m not gonna’ sell this show. They really only made one great album with their debut, “Too Fast For Love,” and I’m sure they’ll play more of their mediocre stuff that followed anyway. But, they’re saying this will be their final tour, so you should go if you’ve always wanted to catch them. Ugh, can you imagine all of the terrible solo projects that could stem from this? Like worse than that One Direction kid’s pending solo career. Anyway, the always entertaining sounds of Alice Cooper will go on prior. Seriously, just go to see Cooper because his live show is pretty intense with less hairspray involved. The all ages show has doors at 6:00 and tickets between $20.00 and $125.00.
Motorhead, Photo: Courtesy of Artist
House of Blues was bringing one of the most entertaining pioneers of metal/hard rock ever to town, when Motorhead was set to perform. Lemmy is such a badass that I shouldn’t have to tell you why you should see these guys live, but he’s also in a bad way health wise; which is why he had to cancel. While we all hope that he gets better and can perform again, you can still catch the seventies British heavy metal of Saxon. These guys have a ton of hits, and their most recent release, “Battering Ram” from this year is pretty solid. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets for $27.58.
Philly’s eclectic and always entertaining Man Man will be over in the studio at Warehouse Live. Seriously, these guys put on a great live show, and 2023’s “On Oni Pond” is a pretty amazing record. Their indie rock pop goodness permeates any room they bring their high energy to. The unsung greatness of Shilpa Ray will go on prior, and should blow everyone away with her intense vocals. Her sultry voice is all over her 2015 album, “Last Year’s Savage,” and she’s an artist you should see live to appreciate. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $14.00 and $16.00.
At House of Creeps, you could catch another edition of the Terraform shows. This edition, headlined by the always popular dance sounds of Goombotic should be a fun one. Houston’s future bass artist, Josiah Gabriel will go on prior, while the chilled out jams of Austin’s Froggle will be on beforehand. Houston’s XLO will also be on the bill, and things will get opened up from Austin’s Layer. The show with FLCON FCKER visuals has doors at 8:00 and a $5.00 cover.
Fox Hollow will have the Peligrosa/Bombon album release party happening. Austin’s Peligrosa and Houston’s Bombon together on one album sounds great, but together live it should be something to definitely see. The album, “Bombon X Peligrosa” features the DJs from both crews, and the show will do the same. There’s complimentary Topo Chico & Remy while supplies last, as well as BoomBox Taco on hand and more. The show is FREE with RSVP, or $5.00 day of, with doors at 9:00.
Out at Joke Joint Comedy Showcase, the incredibly hilarious Bryson Brown will headline his “Talkin’ Shit After Dark,” show. Bryson could be one of the funniest guys you’ll see pick up a mic, and he’s so powerful that he had to leave Austin after blowing all of that city’s comics off the stage. The show also features Ben Jackson, the hilarious Netra Babin, Mahdee Harris, and Kris Atkins. The always funny and entertaining Blue Da Comic will host the 18 & up show with doors at 10:00 and a TBA cover.
You can get your rock on, when Houston four piece Brand New Hearts headline their album release party over at Rudyard’s. The album, “Brand New Hearts” is one of my favorites from this year, where the band brings back the dual guitar and solos that have been vacant from rock music for so very long. These guys are one of the tightest bands you’ll see take a stage, and their tone and energy level is top notch. The indie rock of Houston’s A Sundae Drive will go on prior. This band put out one of my favorite albums last year with “The Senseless & the Sound.” The fuzzy rock of College Station’s The Ex-Optimists will be on hand to open things up with doors at 10:00 and an $5.00 cover on the 21 & up show.
Andy Huggins, Photo: Magee Miller
Sunday you can start off at Joke Joint Comedy Showcase, the man, the myth, the Houston comedy legend; Andy Huggins will be performing. For those not in the know, September 6, 2023 is Andy Huggins day, and I can’t think of anyone else who deserves it more. Andy was one of the original Texas Outlaw Comics, he can kill in any room he performs in, and his album, “Inspired By True Events,” is a laugh riot. Huggins is set to headline while a slew of local comics will go on prior. The evening is hosted by The Whiskey Brothers’ own Rob Mungle, and it’s a great way to support a man who’s helped and inspired pretty much every comic in Houston who has come after him. The show is 18 & up and the doors are at 7:00.
The Vanguard on Harrisburg for the hip hop of The Aspiring Me’s album release. Somewhere on the bill will be Houston’s Mark Drew. Drew hasn’t played much since he dropped his full length last year, “Sleepwalking Through Reality,” due to the fact that he’s been producing so much. If you’re sad that you missed him with Guilla at House of Blues, then this is your chance to catch him live. Because they are like, 3 lineups listed on the web, I don’t know the actual show order. Lyric Michelle will also be on hand, Lita Styles will be there as well, while things are opened by Flyger Woods. There’s also a DJ set from Josiah Gabriel. The doors are at 8:00 with a $10.00 cover.
House of Blues was supposed to host the insanely popular hip hop of Fat Joe, but the show has since been canceled.
Monday you can make it over to Walter’s to catch the melodic country rock of San Diego’s The Donkeys. The four piece is like CSNY meets Pavement, and their latest album, “Ride The Black Wave” from last year is pretty beautiful. The always energetic and crazed garage rock of Houston’s Mikey and The Drags will be there as direct support. These guys have grown a ton since 2023’s “On The Loose!” and their new album will drop this fall. The jammed out pop core of the Chase DeMaster offshoot, Get A Life will be on the bill as well. Straight up, these guys could easily get big, and their stuff is pretty damn strong. DJ EELANDC will open the all ages show with doors at 8:00 and tickets between $7.00 and $10.00.
Passion Pit, Photo: Joe Papeo
On Tuesday, you have to decide between two great shows starting with Passion Pit at House of Blues. The Boston based one man production has some serious heat in the music world, and tracks like “Take A Walk,” and “Sleepyhead” are all the rage. The latest album from him, this year’s “Kindred” is already gaining plenty of steam. Full of energy and crazy production, this should be a really great show. There’s no word of an opener, but that may change. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $46.37 and $57.45.
If you’re like me though, you’re super excited about Earl Sweatshirt over at Warehouse Live. The rescheduled show should be a real doozy, as one of the few of my favorite non-Houston rappers is known for a dope live show. His 2023 album “Doris” was one of my favorites from that year, and his latest, “I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside,” is pretty strong as well. Queens’ rapper Remy Banks will be there as direct support, while LA’s NxWorries will open things up. This is a tight billing and will more than likely sell out. The doors are at 8:00, it’s all ages, and the tickets are $25.00.
That’s about it that’s worth checking out around town. Please remember that it’s a holiday weekend, and that there will be more idiocy than usual. No matter what you decide to do, please drink like an adult, and do things in the safest way possible.