Last day of the weekend coming up fast, Sunday, April 25th, and while it's not quite as insane as the past couple of days, there's still plenty going on -- here's the list of what looks good to me, at least:
Like Trains & Taxis @ Dean's Credit Clothing
This one caught me somewhat off-guard, having never heard of Like Trains & Taxis 'til the past week or so. Nevertheless, debut album Tales from a Revolving Door is a well-done, ridiculously polished chunk of what could somewhat accurately be called indie-soul; it blends Ben Folds-ian piano and effortless melodies with playful, soulful vocals that come off like a male version of Adele, a less-playa John Legend, or a funkier, less surf-y Jack Johnson. It's gentle and smooth and mellow and, frankly, pretty damn cool. Neo-soul music both you and your parents can dig. (And no, that's not always a bad thing. Hell, I was proud back in college when my mom got into Metallica; admittedly, it was the black album, but still...)
Trout Fishing In America @ McGonigel's Mucky Duck (two shows; 2PM & 6PM)
I swear, one of these days I'm going to drag the six-year-old out to see one of Trout Fishing In America's "kid show" performances; unfortunately, other events are conspiring against us for today, but someday soon, honest. The band typically does two shows at the Mucky Duck, one at 2PM for kids and another "adult" show at 6PM -- not that there's anything racy or bawdy at the "adult" show, mind you, just that there're fewer flat-out kid songs like "When I Was a Dinosaur". (And yeah, I think they play that one at the later shows, too.) These guys are bona-fide entertainers, friendly and warm and smart and clever, playing songs that'll make you sing along even as you cringe a little (the first time, anyway) and then realize you're still humming a week later.
Shock Treatment, featuring Blackmarket Syndicate, The American Heist, & Pseudo Section @ Rocbar
I've raved at length about Blackmarket Syndicate in this here blog a few times before, I know, but hell, they're worth the repeated mentions. They're a band I've sadly never gotten to see live, which sucks (for me, that is), but I'm happy to see 'em playing a lot more frequently lately; they're currently doing somewhat of a residency type deal at the Röcbar in downtown, playing the "Shock Treatment" shows each Sunday for the next few months, so get on out to see 'em. Definitely worth a listen, esp. if you're into Social Distortion-style country-tinged punk rock. And hey, what I've heard of The American Heist is pretty cool, too.
iFest, featuring Steel Pulse, Rebirth Brass Band, Cecil and Rainel Pino Orchestra, Sideshow Tramps, D.R.U.M., McTeggart Irish Dancers, Sarah Hickman, Women of Haiti, The Wild Moccasins, Monte Adento featuring Lourdes Jimenez and Jorge Lebron, Lil Brian Terry & the Zydeco Travelers, Baaba Maal, DJ Kasanova, Oyu Oru Afro-Cuban Dance Ensemble, Los de Abajo, Janiva Magness, Orgullo Vallenato, Idiginis, Dominica Dancers, Second Generation Dancers, Mariachi MECA, Ned Sublette, Dubtex, Tony Vega Band, Los Parranderos and Mocko Jumbie Stilt Dancers, Salsa Eddy Salsa Dancers, Sean Richards, Abhinaya School of Indian Dance, & Grupo de N'golo African Capoeira @ Downtown
The final day of the weekend and the final day of this year's International Festival, to boot. And they're going out with a bang, to my mind, both in terms of headliners & local bands. Steel Pulse and the Rebirth Brass Band are the big names today, and I've got a lot of respect for 'em, but honestly, it's folks like Houston reggae legends D.R.U.M., good-hearted indie-pop kids The Wild Moccasins (who've got a CD release show coming up May 21st, btw, and are just back from touring the Midwest & Northeast), Dubtex, & Sideshow Tramps that I'm more excited about.
J Wail/Luke Lukas/Wiggins and Rizk @ Super Happy Fun Land
2010 Texas Crawfish & Music Festival, featuring Shake Russell, Deep Ella, Phil Pritchett, Seabird, Bon Ton Mickey, Fulton Read, & Miss Leslie @ Old Town Spring (Spring)
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