Yr. Weekend, Pt. 1: Omotai + Fox Derby + Meatmen + The Energy + Hope Benefit + Jessica Lea Mayfield + More

Another weekend, another big-ass pile of shows to (potentially, at least) check out… I’ll keep it short & sweet for the moment, if I can, for tonight, Friday, April 22nd.

First off, The Mink‘s got the winner tonight, at least for yours truly — thundering, crushing, unassumingly-heavy trio Omotai are back, and I’m damn glad to see it. The last time I talked to ’em, they handed me a sample of what they’d been working on, and it’s pretty great. I still smile like a moron when I think about last year’s debut EP, Peace Through Fear.

Plus, they’re playing with somebody named Squidbucket, which is awesome in and of itself (and who are apparently metal, and from Austin), and with jaw-droppingly good (mostly) instro-metallers Cavernous, who blew me away at the recent “Metal at the Mink” thing. Really, really good, far better than I’d suspected they might be, honest. (And sorry, apparently Lions of Tsavo are no longer playing.)

A little further downtown-ward, over at the no-Website-having(?) ECHO (formerly Jet Lounge, for those without memories), there’s an interesting-sounding show with Austinites The Selfless Season as headliners — I’m less interested in them, though, than I am The Fox Derby, whose debut full-length, Regular Dreams, I’m still floored by, even though it came out last year. Seriously Brit-sounding, emo-tinged indie-rock that works amazingly well. (See here for full details on the album.)

Over at Walter’s — which, as reported by the intrepid Chris Gray over at the Houston Press, may (emphasis on the “may”) finally be moving to a new location, seeing as a flyer for a show there next weekend lists the address as 1120 Naylor St. — there’s a full night of all-out punk mayhem.

The legendary Meatmen are closing out the night, but even before them there’s plenty to love, particularly old-school Oi!-punks Chelsea Hotel and sneering, snarling band The Energy. For the latter, btw, I’ve just cracked open their forthcoming new album, Get Split, and yes, so far it’s fucking great.

Also up in the Heights, there’s a cool-sounding benefit at Fitzgerald’s for the American Red Cross going on, with locals {A dream Asleep}, Runaway Sun, & The Society of Bandits playing, along with a band I’ve never heard of called Lockehart. It’s specifically aimed at the relief efforts in Japan, but there’ve been a lot of horrific, tragic disasters hitting the world lately; help out if you can.

I can’t forget the other Fitz show tonight, mind you — the awesomely talented Jessica Lea Mayfield will be playing on the other floor (up? down? no idea), along with her brother David Mayfield‘s band. The lady does some truly incredible rootsy, often heartbreakingly bleak, countryish folk-rock; see a review from a while back over here.

And last but not least, yeah, I had to add Kansas to the list — they’re playing out at Nutty Jerry’s tonight, in Winnie. What can I say? I’ve honestly never been a fan, but I’ve been watching a crapload of Supernatural reruns lately, and I’ve actually started liking “Carry On Wayward Son” because of it. So there you go.

Here’s the full pile:

Omotai/Squidbucket/Cavernous @ The Mink
The Meatmen/Against The Grain/The Energy/Skeleton Dick/Chelsea Hotel @ Walter’s
Jessica Lea Mayfield/The David Mayfield Parade @ Fitzgerald’s
WindSync/Hearts of Animals/Nat Baldwin/Rebel Crew/DJ Blenda @ Avant Garden
The Selfless Season/Blondes Make Better Victims/Potbelly/The Fox Derby @ Echo
The Houston Sound Spring Concert Series, featuring Sauce @ Market Square Park (downtown; 6:30-8:30PM)
Hope: Benefiting the American Red Cross, featuring The Society of Bandits, A dream Asleep, Runaway Sun, & Lockehart @ Fitzgerald’s
Megaton Leviathan/Blue Kabuki/Wasp and Pear/Night at Noon/Interference/Werewolf @ Super Happy Fun Land
John Evans @ McGonigel’s Mucky Duck
Skyrocket!/Picture Book @ The Continental Club
Scout Bar 7 Year Anniversary Party, featuring The Hunger, Saturate, & I.D.R. @ The Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
Kansas @ Nutty Jerry’s (Winnie)

(Just out of curiousity, btw, for those few brave souls who read these things, which format works better? Do you like the weekend rundowns formatted in the “old” style, with the shows each listed out & then talked about, or the more chaotic “new” style, the way I’ve been doing it lately? Just wondering if there’s any sort of preference…)

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