Tonight: The Futureheads (MP3) + The Soft Pack (MP3) + Accept + Andrew WK + Art Institute + Vinyl Junkie + More

What the hell? It’s a Wednesday, for crying out loud, but tonight (October 13th) is looking like a Friday, instead (or at least a Sunday). There’s quite a bit going on, and a fair amount of it’s good. Here’s what I like, anyway:

The Soft Pack/The Futureheads/Born Ruffians/Meligrove Band @ Fitzgerald’s
I’m a latecomer to The Futureheads, I’ll admit it — I’d only started listening to ’em relatively recently, but already I’m blown away by the sharp-edged, head-snapping, punk-inflected power-pop they blaze through. They’re the closest thing I’ve heard to The Jam (albeit with more of a Clash-like streetfighting edge) in a long, long time, and that’s no bad thing. Check ’em out:

The Futureheads – “Struck Dumb”

Plus, there’s headliners The Soft Pack, who sound like they could be from Manchester but actually hail from San Diego; there’s an odd resemblance, still, to the friendlier of the old Rough Trade bands, not to mention VU and their post-punk progeny. Here’s a track from them, too:

The Soft Pack – “Gagdad”

Gonna be a good one, folks; get on up to the “new” Fitz.

Accept/King’s X/The Lotus Effect @ House of Blues
Holy wow. Long, long ago, in the days before the Internet and Myspace and Facebook and podcasts and iPods, yours truly was trapped in a weird vortex in Central Texas where the music played on the radio was country, rap, and not much else. Back then, MTV hadn’t even yet hit the glam-metal-boom phase, which meant that my young wannabe-headbanger self was forced to troll through the pages of the Columbia House mailorder catalog — not to buy anything, mind you, but just to see what the hell was out there, which I could then try to find at our one independent record store (if I had enough money to get a cassette, that is).

For some reason, Accept stands out from back in those days, whether because of their ’83 album, Balls to the Wall — the name alone of which was as jaw-dropping at the time as anything — or because, hell, they were German metal dudes with names like “Udo Dirkschneider”. I mean, c’mon, you can’t make that shit up, right there. These guys were badass, they played their guitars blazingly fast, they wore leather, and they seemed like they’d pretty much screw anything that moved. For a teenage boy, the appeal was insane.

Anyway, it’s very cool to see that not only are they back together & touring, but they’re playing decent-sized venues and not some bar down in League City or something (no offense, League Citizens; y’all just don’t have very many big clubs). And hey, they’ve got the also-reunited King’s X with ’em, which also does my soul good, and up-and-coming alt-rockers The Lotus Effect, besides. Nice.

The Most Interesting Show in the World, featuring Andrew W.K. & more @ Warehouse Live (21+ free w/RSVP)
Yep, this looks like it could well be pretty damn neat, even though it’s essentially a crass beer-company promo. It’s not music, really — the idea, I believe, is that it’s some sort of variety show, complete with escape artists and magicians and whatever, and it’s all hosted by in-your-face party guy Andrew W.K., whom I like quite a bit, in spite of past H-town disses. Although I must admit, it’d be cooler if The Most Interesting Man in the World himself were the emcee, but y’know.

Black Pharaohs/Art Institute @ Mango’s (8:30PM; $5)
Dunno Black Pharaohs at all, I’m afraid, but I’ve recently been introduced to local proto-punks {Art Institute}, and while they’re still raw around the edges at points (y’know, that is sometimes a good thing), I’m definitely liking it so far. They’ve sent a demo our way, I’m told, so hopefully that’ll make it to ye olde P.O. Box soon…

Doom Siren/Life Erased/H.R.A./Redriver @ Vinyl Junkie (6:30-10PM; $5)
Dunno most of these bands, but the venue itself, Vinyl Junkie is brand-new as of tonight, so that’s worth a salute right there — it’s apparently the new storefront of the near-legendary punk/hardcore distro, which recently moved on down here to the H-town ‘hood, per the Houston Press. Stop by, get caught in a mosh, then buy some records, eh?

Electric 6/The Constellations @ Fitzgerald’s
Okay, so my minion Kyle has been attempting to get me to give Electric 6 a second chance, and dammit, it’s working, slowly but surely. It doesn’t hurt that songs like the (apparently classic) “High Voltage” are insanely freaking catchy, despite being flat-out insane and sleazy:

Cheeseball faux-Euro accents make everything more entertaining, don’t they?

Runners-Up:
The Futureheads @ Cactus Music (5:30PM)
Cory Derden @ Sedition Books (7PM)


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