And yes, because New Year's insanity isn't the only thing going on this week, uh, here's the rest. Plenty of good stuff to keep you out enjoying this bizarro "is it really New Year's?" weather. Here's my picks:
Thurs., January 1:
Warbler/The Eastern Sea (tour kickoff)/Elaine Greer/News on the March @ The Mink
I know, I know -- how many times can I blather on about The Eastern Sea, seriously? But what the heck can I say? These folks have bowled me over, well & truly. Note-perfect, impassioned, aim-for-sky indie-pop, the kind Conor Oberst wishes he could still make. And on top of that, there's also News on the March, the thought of whom just makes me grin a goofy grin in spite of myself -- folky country-pop, sweet as cane syrup and with awesome Beach Boys-esque harmonies. (No, really -- just reading about 'em can't do the sound justice.) And, of course, Elaine Greer, who's become one of the top folky pop songstresses in town over the span of the past few years & who is very cool herself. Dunno Warbler, sorry, but the other three are well worth the $6. Get there early, though; the show supposedly starts at 7PM over at The Mink...
Fri., January 2:
Born Liars/Golden Boys/The Backalley Sluts @ The Mink
It's taken me a while to get into the Born Liars, but dammit, I've finally seen the light. Raw, uncompromising garage-rock that uses the melody to give you a big, dirty kiss while the guitars punch you in the gut. Their music's like a "fuck-you" letter to the girl who cheated on you, dumped you, & then called to say she wanted to get back together.
The Sour Notes/Spain Colored Orange/listenlisten @ Rudyard's
A good, good, good one, and one that's bound to make the choice of what to do on Friday night a rough one. Spain Colored Orange are always interesting (although I miss the older, poppier stuff as I listen back through my old cassettes from Back In The Day), and listenlisten utterly rule, leaving even indie-hipster crowds staring in open-mouthed awe at their bleak, baroque "olden-times rock" music. Then there's Austin-dwelling headliners The Sour Notes, who're fronted by expat Houstonian Jared Paul Boulanger and who manage to hit all the right indie-light-rock notes, from Death Cab to Say Hi to Rilo Kiley; I'm digging the heck out of what I've heard so far of the band's about-to-be-released new album, Received in Bitterness.
The Last Starfighter/A Dream Asleep/Cromwell/This Year's Tiger/Aerial Second @ Fitzgerald's
A bit of an odd bill, I think -- last I checked, headliners The Last Starfighter were screamo all the way (and good at it, too), while This Year's Tiger did that Alkaline Trio-esque melodic post-punk thing (and very well, I should add). Should be a cool one to check out...
John Evans (CD release)/Rich O'Toole @ McGonigel's Mucky Duck
Only caught John Evans live once so far, but I was mightily impressed. There're only a few country-type folks in town I'd like to see really make it big on the national level, and he pretty much tops the list.
Sat., January 3:
Caddywhompus/Searching For Signal/White Horse Tabernacle/Smiley with a Knife @ Notsuoh
If I could hand out an award for the best damn 4-song psych-stomp EP of the year, the two Houston/New Orleans dwellers in Caddywhompus would win, no doubt. I could listen to "Absinthesizer" all day, on infinite repeat, and be a happy, happy man.
Two Tons of Steel/Miss Leslie and Her Juke Jointers @ The Continental Club
I love Miss Leslie, period. She's incredible. It's like Patsy Cline never passed on to her reward, I swear...
Driver F/Zlam Dunk/Barely Blind/Thea/BetterLuck/Gatsby @ Javajazz Coffee House (Spring)
Dunno most of these folks real well, sorry, but I picked up Barely Blind's debut EP at random a year or so ago, and holy crap is it good. It's insane how difficult it's become to find honest-to-gosh good pop-punk-ish rock these days, and these boys pass it out by the handful.
Grand 1894 Opera House Birthday & Reopening, featuring Jerry Jeff Walker @ Grand 1894 Opera House (Galveston)
Nah, I'm no huge Jerry Jeff Walker fan or anything, but I am a fan of the Grand 1894, which has managed to weather every city-devastating hurricane that's hit Galveston in the past 115 years. And that's including not only Ike but also the great un-anthropomorphized Galveston Hurricane of 1900. Any structure that can survive all that is seriously deserving of respect, in my book.
Sun., January 4:
Potluck Benefit for Airon Paul Dugas, featuring Lenny Briscoe, Ellis and Hart, Rhett Burch, & Sew What @ Stitched Tire House (1506 Caywood Ln.; 7PM, $5-$10 donation)
Yep, already blogged about this, so check it here. (And then go, obviously. Duh.)
Meriwether/American Fangs/My Own I/Innerstate @ The Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
No, I dunno these folks real well, but I stumbled across American Fangs a short while ago & found myself intrigued. Fairly alt-rock-like, but not bad, for that, just bassy, in-your-face rawk.
Mon., January 5:
Agartha/Darwin's Finches @ Boondocks
What's not like about trippy, mythology-obssessed prog-jazz-rock lodged into the heart of Indie Scenesterdom? I can almost feel the wallet chains rattling in confused fury...
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