Burn It Down: The Best of The WeekAWOLNATION, Photo: Gabriel Olsen
Last week was a doozy full of plenty of Halloween treats, but this week is full of acts rolling through Houston on the heels of FUN FUN FUN Fest. Acts like the massively popular AWOLNATION pictured above will be here to entertain the masses. Houston, your week just got planned.
Wednesday I feel like you’re foolish if you don’t head over to Walters to catch the legendary punk sounds of Subhumans. The UK based anarchist group was one of my favorites growing up, and albums like 1983’s “The Day The Country Died” are up there with some of the best punk ever made. Their most recent release was 2007’s “Internal Riot,” but when you’re as legendary as these guys, does that really matter? Denver punks, Potato Pirates will be on as direct support. These guys got some attention with their ska punk tune, “Fuck the Radio,” and last year they dropped a pretty good full length with “Raised Better Than This.” Austin four piece, Equinox will also be on hand, while the fast and furious punk of Houston’s The Ballistics will open things up. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets for $15.00.
If you like your punk to come from Southern California, then you could head to Warehouse Live for Lagwagon. These guys have been making pop punk for twenty five years, and they don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Their 1998 album, “Let’s Talk About Feelings” was my jam back in the day. Last year they gave fans a new album called “Hang” that stayed pretty true to form. They’ll be joined by LA’s Runaway Kids who play more of a mix of second wave emo and pop punk. NOLA punk four piece, PEARS will be on hand to open the all ages show in the studio with doors at 7:00 and tickets between $20.00 and $22.00.
Revention Center will host the massively popular sounds of LA’s AWOLNATION. The Red Bull Records artist has been getting attention since forming in 2009, and their latest release, “Run” has been blowing up since it dropped earlier this year. The doors are at 8:00, the show is all ages, and tickets are between $25.00 & $30.00, and will more than likely sell out.
Peaches, Photo: Josh Brasted
Of course, if you just want to “Fuck the Pain Away,” then you could head to Numbers to catch the visual assault of Peaches. For anyone who missed her perform at this year’s FPSF, I can attest that she’s worth making it out for… especially if you’re a fan. This year returned with her latest release, “Rub,” where she enlists heavy hitting names like Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth and Feist as guests on the album. Austin drag terrorist and producer/performer, Christeene will go on as direct support and opener. Known for a crazy live show, her latest release was the 2012 album, “Waste Up, Kneez Down.” The all ages show will also have an after party featuring the New light Dj’s DJ Damon Allen, DJ Andrew MF Trevino, and DJ Melle Mel Frausto. The doors are at 8:00 and the tickets are between $18.00 and $20.00.
Over at Alley Kat you could check out the experimental and electro-punk-folk sounds of Brooklyn’s Yairms. This two piece makes trippy little jams that are hard to put a finger on genre wise, but worth checking out. The drums alongside electronics sounds of Pitter Patter will go on prior, while the experimental sounds of Houston’s Gato Guapo will open things up. The 21 & up show has doors at 8:00 and a measly $4.00 cover.
Thursday you can start at The Nightingale Room when Calliope Music of Austin brings their folky sounds to town. It feels like pretty much everything out of Austin lately is either bar blues or folk, and this band has a bit of both in them. Their most recent release was 2013’s “Clouds On Fire.” If you want to go I’d suggest heading there for Houston’s Hayden Jones & the Roosevelt House Band. Jones and company make some pretty great tunes, they’re a force to catch live, and you’re foolish if you miss their high energy sound. The 21 & up show has doors at 7:00 & it’s 100% FREE.
If you had planned to get those emo feels out when Bright Eyes frontman Conor Oberst was to bring his emoverse side project Desaparecidos to Numbers, the show has since been canceled.
At Stone’s Throw you could get your tease on, when Dem Damn Dames‘ own Tifa Tittlywinks hosts another edition of Thursday Tease. These shows feature a bit of music and a bit of burlesque to tide you over between Dames shows. This edition will feature burlesque from Dallas’ own Iris Le’Mour as well as a DJ set from DJ Brown Coat. The 21 & upshow has doors at 8:00 and it’s 100% FREE.
If you’d rather get your goth on, then you could head over to the ballroom at Warehouse Live to catch the industrial legacy of Canada’s Skinny Puppy. The legendary act that formed over thirty years ago is still going strong and selling out venues wherever they play. These guys set the standard with pretty much every release up until the late nineties, and their latest “Mythmaker” from last year keeps that legacy alive. The popular ebm jams of California duo, Youth Code will be on as direct support. Last year they released the epic and dark sounding album, “A Place To Stand,” and they’re known for getting crazy at their shows. Houston’s favorite DJ, DJ Damon Allen will open things up, and I’m sure will bring a dark and heavy set list of jams to all who attend. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $27.00 & $30.00.
Mayhem, Photo: Liz Ramanand
On Friday you can kick off the night at the Warehouse Live ballroom for the black metal mythology of Norway’s Mayhem. These guys have had more of a sordid past than pretty much any band ever. They had a lead singer commit suicide, one of their members was stabbed to death, and one of them was convicted of murder. I guess what I’m saying, is that if you’re a fan of Norwegian black metal, then this is your show. Last year they dropped a new album with “Esoteric Warfare,” and they’re known to be amazing live. The black metal of Sweden’s Watain will be on as co-headliner, and should scare the crap out of everyone when they perform. Their most recent release was 2013’s “The Wild Hunt,” and their satanic imagery has become well known. Greece’s Rotting Christ will bring their creepy black metal to life as openers. These guys have a more produced version of the genre, but that doesn’t mean it’s not as fierce. Their latest, “Lucifer Over Athens” is weird and demonic sounding, especially for a live album. There’s a good chance that this show will sell out, it’s all ages, and the tickets are between $20.00 and $25.00 with doors at 7:00.
House of Blues will be bringing in the prolific hip hop of Minnesota’s PROF. This guy has been dropping plenty of material since his debut in 2007, and he can rock a mic like he was born to do it. His latest release, this year’s “Liability” has been gaining all sorts of attention, and the way in which he mixes new styles with old school is something you need to see to believe. Opening things up and performing the duties of direct support will be Def Perception’s MC, Raymond A with the group’s DJ Baby Roo. These two have been on a regimen of epic proportions this year. Roo launched a record label with Roologic, they’ve been playing on all the right shows, and the two dropped a mixtape this year with “(The Unexpected…)” that proves that they’re on a whole different level. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets for $15.00.
The legendary status of Billy Joel will be performing over at Toyota Center. As long as Joel isn’t driving himself to the venue, the show should be worth checking out. Joel has had big time hits like “Piano Man,” “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant,” “Only The Good Die Young,” Uptown Girl,” and many many more. I mean, the guy is a damn legend who is pretty awesome to catch live. There’s no word of an opener, the doors are at 7:00 and the tickets are between $49.50 and $129.50.
TJ and Dave, Photo: Courtesy of Artist
Of course, when you speak of legendary status, the improv duo of TJ & Dave is right up there, if not at the top of the list; and the two comics will be at MATCH(Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston). Hailed by critics and comics everywhere, the Chicago improv performers have had a documentary made about them with “Trust Us, This Is All Made Up.” The New York Times, Variety, Stephen Colbert, and pretty much everyone who’s ever seen them calls the two true geniuses of the improv form. Trust me, from a guy who’s not a big improv guy; these two are the best you’ll see, and as far as I know, this is their first time here in Houston. Presented by Beta Theater & Houston Improv Festival, the ONE NIGHT ONLY show is something you need to experience to believe. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets for $25.00 for students and $35.00 for everyone else.
Rudyard’s will host the doom metal of Cincinnati’s Beneath Oblivion. This four piece plays sludge metal that’s doom heavy and still engaging. Their 2011 album “From Man To Dust” is pretty intense. They’ll be joined by Houston three piece, Funeral Horse. These guys just dropped an intense album themselves with “Divinity For The Wicked,” and they’re always loud and highly energetic when they perform. The 21 & up show has doors at 9:00 and an $8.00 cover.
You can close out your Friday night over at Avant Garden for another show from Smooth & Faded, this time featuring Angiesliste. If you need an excuse to get down then this is the person who can give it to you. High energy and genre mixing are all over her jams, and the recently dropped “FALLMIX” from her is intense. Prior to her set, Blackout & Smooth and Faded’s Act Badd will go on prior, and bring his deck skills to all who attend. Vic G will be there to open things up on the 21 & up show that gets going around 10:00 upstairs. There’s also a DJ set from GRRRL Parts on the patio, and all of it is 100% FREE.
Saturday you can start things off at First Saturdays Montrose at Royal Oak. There’s all sorts of food and vendors selling their wares, alongside live music and DJ sets. The live music this month is from Sergio Trevino of Buxton, Adam Bricks, and Deep Cuts while there will be DJ sets from Children of Pop and Holiday Club. Things start with doors at noon and it’s 100% FREE.
Walters will have the ever popular indie rock sounds of Philly’s Modern Baseball. Though they’ve only been around for about three years, this four piece has made more than enough fans in a short time. They dropped a full length last year with “You’re Gonna Miss It All,” but they’ve returned this year with an EP “MOBO Presents: The Perfect Cast EP feat. Modern Baseball.” If you’ve never seen them I can say that they’re pretty awesome to see live. Toronto punk four piece, PUP will be on as direct support, and should bring their heavy energy to all when they play. Last year they released “PUP” and they’ve been wowing audiences ever since. The DIY indie efforts of Jeff Rosenstock will also be on the bill, as will Tiny Moving Parts of Minnesota. The all ages show has doors at 6:00 and tickets between $18.00 and $20.00.
The Psychedelic Furs, Photo: Dan Harr
Over at House of Blues, The Psychedelic Furs will bring their legendary new wave sounds to all. These guys have been around since the late seventies, and they have a crazy catalog of hits that include, “Love My Way,” “Pretty In Pink,” and “Heaven.” They’ll have California four piece, Max and the Moon on as direct support and openers. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $23.00 and $40.00.
The Menil Collection will have a very intimate performance from Wilco drummer, Glenn Kotche. The percussionist dropped three solo records prior to joining the band, and utilizes found objects to use as percussive instruments. This technique can be found all over his 2006 album, “Mobile.” This event will definitely sell out, the line to get in starts at 5:00, entry is at 7:30, and the performance begins at 8:00. It’s an all ages affair that, weather permitting, will have the inside performance projected outside to those who couldn’t gain entry. While the show is FREE, you could always be cool and bring a donation to the museum.
Antemasque, Photo: Pedro Peredes-Haz
Over at Fitzgerald’s, the guys from Antemasque return to town after making their rounds and performing at the same place a year ago. That performance blew me away and made me realize that no matter what Omar & Cedric do together, it will always be entertaining and like watching something violent at the same time. Their debut release, “Antemasque” was a tour de force, and brought a fresh sound to what the two are known for. Omar’s younger brother, mass percussionist and multi-instrumentalist turned producer, Eureka The Butcher will be on as direct support while Houston’s Empty Shells will open things up. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $17.00 and $20.00.
Bohemeo’s will host the second annual Scorpio Party with Houston’s Jealous Creatures as headliners. If you’ve never caught this band then you’ve been doing Houston wrong. Their new album, “The Night Goes On For Days” brought a new version of their sound to life. Austin seven piece garage folk act, Madisons will be on the bill as well, while the crazed energy of Houston three piece Only Beast will go on prior. The loud fuzz rock of College Station’s The Ex-Optimists will also perform, and Golden Sombrero will open the all ages show with doors at 8:00 and a FREE cover charge.
The Bombon collective will have their 5th Birthday bash over at Fox Hollow. The entire crew will be on hand to spin jams from their recently released album with Austin’s Peligrosa crew, “Bombon X Peligrosa.” Of course they’ll also bring all of the tropical flare you’re used to from them with live percussion and comp drinks from Remy Martin & Topo Chico. It’s FREE if you RSVP in time here, otherwise the 21 & up show has a $5.00 cover and the doors are at 9:00.
Sunday you can get your draw on when another edition of Sketchbook Saloon takes place. This time, hosts Hannah Bull and Honey Moonpie will bring the world of Mad Max: Fury Road to life. They’ll have help from Dem Damn Dames’ Nick T Vegan as Mad Max and Luxe Noir as Furiosa for your drawing pleasure as well as Haley Ford. They’ll also have Houston Whatever Fest ticket giveaways on the 21 & up show with doors at 1:00. The cover is $15.00 for new members, $10.00 for existing members, and $20.00 for photographers, over at The Corkscrew.
On Winbern Street, you could elect to attend the Katz Coffee Porter Party. The guys at Katz Coffee & Real Ale have teamed up to raise money for the Houston Fire Department, with an event with live music from Los Skarnales. There’s also kids activities, a silent auction, and beer. Things start at 2:00, more information is available here, and it’s 100% FREE.
If you’re a fan of Little Dipper, then you could attend their 2 Year Anniversary Party. A photo booth, tacos from Taqueria Barba, and tunes from DJ Jason Wolter will all be on display. It’s 21 & up, it starts at 4:00, and it’s 100% FREE.
Born Ruffians, Photo: Laura Lynn Petrick
At Warehouse Live they’ll host the indie rock of Ontario’s Born Ruffians. These guys have been gaining steam since they released their 2013 album, “Birthmarks,” and their new album “Ruff” has been garnering just as much attention. The lo-fi indie jams of Ontario’s Young Rival will be on as openers and direct support. Their latest release, “Interior Light” is eclectic as it is catchy. The all ages show in the studio has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $18.00 and $20.00.
Rudyard’s will have the rough and tumble rock of Fort Worth’s Quaker City Night Hawks. The bluesy rocker are here in support of last year’s two song release, “Texas Heavy,” which lives up to its name. The country twang of Houston’s The Broken Spokes will be there as direct support, while things will get started by the folk punk bluegrass mixture of Son of Bitch. The 21 & up show has doors at 8:00 and an $8.00 cover.
Down at Scout Bar, the legendary hip hop funk tunes of The Pharcyde will be in town. These guys were a trip back in the day with their album, “Bizarre Ride II,” and they’re usually pretty entertaining live. Their last release was a remix and rarity collection in 2005 called “Sold My Soul,” but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t worth checking out. Chutes McGoo & the Truckstop Assassins and Conflict will also be on the bill, while the trippy hip hop of Frank D’Amato will open things up. This guy dropped a dope album last year with “Astroworld,” and he’s definitely worth getting there early for. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $16.00 and $23.00.
Monday, Fitzgerald’s will have LA guitar and bass duo Girlpool. These two have been making songs since they were in high school, and they’ve received all sorts of critical acclaim. Their latest, this year’s “Before The World Was Big,” is as offbeat and intriguing as the bulk of their material. Philly former bedroom artist and multi-instrumentalist, Alex G will be there as direct support, while Houston’s The Lories will be there to open things up. The all ages show has doors at 7:00 and tickets between $11.00 and $13.00.
Tweak Bird, Photo: David Kleeman
Walters will have the Southern Illinois brother duo of Tweak Bird on hand as well. These guys play a mixture of stoner rock meets psych, and they’ve been getting attention from all over the place since they began. Known for an intense live show, their latest album, last year’s “Any Ol’ Way” is an assault to the sense while still being great. Houston’s Space Villains will go on prior and bring songs from their latest “Asterism” to life, while the noise psych sounds of Houston’s Black Lodge will open the show up. This should be a show full of energy that’s all ages with doors at 8:00 and tickets between $7.00 and $10.00.
Idaho producer/performer Youth Lagoon will bring his popular jams over to the studio at Warehouse Live. This guy is insanely popular and he drops releases pretty quickly. His latest is called “Savage Hills Ballroom” from this year, and is already getting praise. The intense sounds of Toronto duo Moon King will go on prior as well as open the show. These two make this tripped out sound that’s like a mix of the eighties new wave scene and modern electro pop. The all ages show has doors at 8:00 and tickets between $16.00 and $18.00.
Tuesday you might find yourself over at Revention Center if you’re a fan of Sammy Hagar, when Sammy Hagar & the Circle performs. The red rocker has assembled a band made up of former VH bassist Michael Anthony, Vic Johnson, and Jason Bonham to play his tunes. I say his, but it’s more a mixture of tunes he’s done and tunes with VH. Their debut album, ”At Your Service (Live)” is pretty good if that’s your thing. The doors are at 8:00 and the tickets are between $44.50 and $85.00.
That’s about all that’s happening but still a pretty solid seven days. No matter what you decide to do, please do so in the safest way possible.