Yr. Weekend, Pt. 1: Grandfather Child + The Suffers + the last place you look + B.E. Godfrey + More

Damn; it’s looking like a good weekend, folks. Admittedly, tonight — Fri., August 31st — isn’t looking as jam-packed as tomorrow night, but it’s still pretty great. Here we go:

Grandfather Child (album release)/The Suffers/Marmalakes @ Fitzgerald’s
Oh, yes — this is the biggie of the night, no question. Since Grandfather Child first stepped out onstage a handful of years ago, people have been clamoring for something, anything in recorded form from these guys, and rightly so.

They released the 7″ for their fucking incredible slow-burn ballad “Waiting for You” last year — which you can download for free right here — but honestly, that just felt like a teaser. Those aforementioned people (me included) wanted something a whole hell of a lot bigger.

And yeah, the band’s delivered. I have yet to hear the whole thing, sadly, but as mentioned a little while back, I ran across samples of Grandfather Child over on Amazon, and holy crap, does it sound good.

Lucas Gorham, Ryan Chavez, Robert Ellis, and Geoffrey Muller (who together have probably played in nearly 20 different bands here over the years; this is a bona-fide Houston-music supergroup, even if they don’t want to label themselves as such) have built this crazy, soulful, intense amalgam of blues, funk, rock, and R&B, all gently simmered in a stew of ’70s-vintage influences and church vibes, and the result is that big, big thing I’d been hoping for.

Catch ’em tonight for their album release, y’all, and make sure you get there early to catch The Suffers, who won not one but three Houston Press Music Awards this year, and deserved all three of ’em. The band does a great, great melding of ska, reggae, and rocksteady, and they do it like they love the music and never want to do anything else.

Labor Day Weekend Block Party, featuring the last place you look, From Guts to Glory, Artificial, & Luminosity @ The Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
Yeah, yeah, I know it’s a bit of a drive, but so what? This is your last chance to see the last place you look in full-band form before they head out on tour with 10 Years, only stopping back through H-town in October for BuzzFest.

And that’s not good news for you, because they are — and I will brook no dissent on this, Goddammit — The Best Damn Alternative Rock Band in Town. Yes, there are lots of other worthy bands floating around our massive, sprawling city, but of all the bands that fit that particular alt-rock mold, none of them hit that mark like these guys do.

They play songs that roar and swell in the best, best, best possible way, attacking the stage like they know the world will end as soon as the music fades away, and they do it while remaining humble, genuine, thoughtful guys who are as human as you or me. That’s my kind of alternarock band, right there.

Eli/B.E. Godfrey/Marry Me @ Mango’s ($5)
I’ve heard good, good things about Eli, and I’m pretty sure Marry Me is actually the pop project of the non-By the End of Tonight-spawned half of Lisa’s Sons (and I’ve heard good things about MM, as well), but for me the draw is the guy in the middle of the bill.

See, B.E. Godfrey is known better ’round these parts as Ben Godfrey, aka the frontman and one of the core trio of multi-instrumentalists at the heart of listenlisten. Which is to say he’s one of the main people behind one of the most jaw-droppingly, heart-wrenchingly awesome strange-folk bands I’ve ever even heard of. (If you’ve seen the band, he’s the tall one, with the killer Civil-War-general mustache.)

Now, I’ve never seen Godfrey solo, so I can’t say for sure what that’ll be like, but I’ve taken a listen to the couple of tracks he’s got up on his site, and they’re freaking incredible. They’re not listenlisten tracks, to my ear, but rather ramble on over through the realm inhabited by Iron & Wine, with the bitter, desperate erudition of The Mountain Goats layered on top.

Take a listen/download for yourself:

Runners-Up:
Poor Pilate/Brent Nettles/Don’t Poke The Bear @ Fitzgerald’s
Ian Moore & The Lossy Coils/duneTX/The Allen Oldies Band @ The Continental Club
Clandestine @ McGonigel’s Mucky Duck
Southern Backtones @ Cafe Brasil
Crunk Witch/Provision/Vertigo Blue/Heidi Massin @ Dean’s Credit Clothing
Killing Clover/Shut Up Sidney/B.U.G./Nocturnal Avernus @ White Swan Live
Project Armageddon/Serpent Sun/Morgue City/The Minds Eye @ Acadia Bar & Grill (3939 FM 1960 West)


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