Tonight: Russian Circles (MP3) + The Fox Derby + La Snacks + Clory Martin + Saves The Day + More

A little early for the end-of-week rundown, I know, but heck, I’m trying to get a little bit of a head start on things, at least, and there’s some very cool stuff going on these next couple of pre-weekend days, so I didn’t want to miss out on it… Here goes (now back in the retro-oldstyle format):

Wed., November 2:
Russian Circles/Deafheaven/Sleeping Ancient @ Fitzgerald’s
I will freely admit to having been lukewarm-ish on instro-metallers Russian Circles, in part because, well, H-town’s own Scale The Summit kinda obliterates any competition and because they always struck me as also-rans to Pelican, who’ve irked me in the past themselves. After hearing new track “Mládek,” though, off brand-new full-length Empros, though, I’m wondering if I’d gotten that whole Pelican comparison thing backwards all along.

These guys definitely do mine that same sort of epic-yet-crushingly-heavy sound, with lush, gorgeous, distorted guitar tones worthy of any StS song you can name, but they weld it onto starry-eyed Explosions in the Sky-esque drama and then kick in the afterburners like fellow Chicagoans Pelican always seemed to want to do on 2007’s cool-yet-flawed City of Echoes. They basically pick up where that band’s left off and built something truly jaw-droppingly good from the pieces.

Check it out for yourself right here:

    Russian Circles – “Mládek”

Plus, they’ve got highly promising local murk-rock/metal guys Sleeping Ancient opening, as an added bonus; like I’ve mentioned before, I’m impressed with what I’ve heard from ’em so far & am looking forward to more. Get on up to Fitz, tonight.

Cobra Skulls/Nothington @ Mango’s
Oooo-kay. So, here’s the deal: I saw this show up on the Mango’s calendar a long, long while ago, back before that whole Mink/Mango’s messiness, and I got all psyched, because Cobra Skulls are one of a teeny-tiny handful of pop-punk bands out there right now that get me at all excited, these days. They’ve got a nicely countryish tinge to ’em, like Social Distortion at their best, but still with plenty of slashing guitars and snarling vocals and an occasional oddball tendency towards off-time breaks. Cool, right?

Well, maybe. See, now I’m looking back at the Mango’s site, and lo and behold, the show’s not listed there anymore. The band still has it up on their Facebook page, which makes me hope it’s just an oversight; I just want folks to be warned. These guys are well worth seeing, in my book.

Drake and Sofia/The Fox Derby @ Super Happy Fun Land
Another late-changer I was a little bummed about, I have to say — ’til a few days ago, excellent alt-rockers Adelaine were also on the bill, but they’ve since fallen off. Dang. What the heck, though; The Fox Derby are pretty awesome in their own right, like a serious, intensely personal Britpop band if they were raised on orchestral indie-rock instead of Blur. Check ’em out.

Potroast/Clory Martin @ Last Concert Cafe
I’d heard of Clory Martin for a while now and wanted to actually hear/see her, and now that I’ve finally gotten to listen to some of her music, I’m blown away. Her sweet, delicate-yet-strong voice and melancholy folkiness has propelled her pretty quickly towards the top of my list of favorite singer-songwriters; check out this video of her performance at The Caroline Sessions around this time last year to see why:

Thurs., November 3:
Saves The Day/Bayside/I Am The Avalanche/Transit @ Warehouse Live (Studio)
Yeah, yeah — I know I’ve been pretty harsh on Saves The Day in the past. What can I say? I freaking loved (hell, “love”) “At Your Funeral” to death, and nearly everything I’ve heard from ’em since has let me down, making ’em seem like a bargain-basement version of MAE.

Well, ’til now, at least — now I’m listening to tracks from new album Daybreak, and whoa, where the hell did that come from? Going by the ferocious strength of “Deranged & Desperate” & “Living Without Love,” I’ll grant that I may’ve pushed these guys aside prematurely. Damn. Why couldn’t you guys have done this for Under The Boards?

Beyond that, I’ve heard great things from friends who know about Bayside, enough that I really need to check ’em out at some point soon.

We Were Wolves/La Snacks/A.D.D. @ Mango’s
Nice. I was fairly bowled over by ex-Houstonians La Snacks‘ debut EP, Newfangled, a few years back, and while I have yet to hear anything new from ’em, unfortunately, I’m pretty hopeful. Plus, they’re playing with Beaumont’s We Were Wolves, about whom I’ve heard good, good things, plus promising local rapper A.D.D. (who’ll also be at Fun Fun Fun Fest this coming 11/4/11 with Fat Tony)…

Roy Clark @ Dosey Doe Coffee Company (The Woodlands)
Dwight Yoakam/Aaron Watson @ Nutty Jerry’s (Winnie)

All I’ve got for now, y’all. Get on out…

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