Yr. (Late) Weekend, Pt. 1: The Manichean + Omotai + Co-Pilot + B.E. Godfrey + Sarah Hirsch + DJ William Michael Smith + The Snow Indian + More

397455_442968105798663_1421336608_nArgh. Well, I started this several hours ago, and then other things intervened, and now here it is late as hell, and I’m behind. sigh. It’s Friday, June 14th, and it’s already a damn busy weekend; here’s what looks & sounds cool to me (and yes, you’ve still got time to get out & see ’em):

The Manichean/B.E. Godfrey/Austin Smith (mem. of A Sea Es)/We are Wombat @ Avant Garden ($5)
Okay, so it’s a hard, hard call between these top two shows tonight, but dangit, The Manichean wins out because I’m glad to see the band come out of its quasi-hiatus since the release of last year’s stellar LOVERS. The ultra-dramatic band of orchestral-indie-rockers have been away from the stage for too damn long; I seriously missed seeing them at this year’s Free Press Summer Fest, and I’m happy they’re back playing again. This’ll apparently be a bit of a toned-down acoustic performance, but still, fans of Jeremy Enigk, The Decemberists, Belle & Sebastian, & vintage dreampop should seriously take a listen.

Plus, I truly, truly dig B.E. Godfrey‘s solo stuff (what I’ve heard of it so far, at least), and hey, I can’t help but at least be curious about a band named We are Wombat, right? Oh, and as an added bonus, The Manichean will be giving away tickets to their June 28th Alley performance to some lucky, lucky bastards who attend.

Odessa/Omotai/Co-Pilot/Bowel @ Fitzgerald’s ($7)
Yusssss. I honestly can’t remember if Omotai and Co-Pilot have ever played together before now, but if they haven’t, OHDEARGODTHEYNEEDTO. Both bands are heavy and atmospheric and fill your ears with raging guitar badassery, but Omotai uses its sheer power to stomp you down to the floor, while Austin/Houston band Co-Pilot uses its power to blaze with a righteous, touch-the-sky fire, and both are freaking awesome at what they do. Heck, they’re actually veering somewhat nearer to one another, honestly, what with the more melodic/post-rock bits on last year’s Omotai album, Terrestrial Grief.

Headliners Odessa, who I caught a couple of years ago now, are also pretty impressive in their own right, playing even more insanely loud, heavy instro-metal tunes; they’re more hypnotic than anything else, in my experience, and reminded me a heck of a lot of Earth, which is no bad thing, believe me.

The Sing Your Life (Traveling) Acoustic Showcase, featuring Sarah Hirsch (Jealous Creatures), Jennifer O’Brien, Kara Melton, Will Evans, Jason Long, Blake Shepherd (Electric Attitude), & Gilbert Alfaro (Spain Colored Orange) @ The Big Top
Over at The Big Top tonight, there’s the latest Sing Your Life showcase, and it promises to be an extremely good one, not least of all because the ever-cool Sarah Hirsch, frontwoman for excellent, windswept nu-Western indie-rockers Jealous Creatures, is playing. I’ve honestly never heard her play acoustic, but I know that’s pretty much how she got her start, which says to me that it’s bound to be great. There’s also Blake Shepherd, who fronts the very-different electro-funk-pop band Electric Attitude, and no, I have no idea what he’ll sound like with an acoustic guitar…

DJ William Michael Smith @ Leon’s Lounge
If low-key is more your thing, well, you need to head on over to Leon’s Lounge, where former Houston Press scribe — he’s now freelancing, I believe — and all-round authority on all things Texas music- and/or country-related. He’s an ornery guy, I’m told, but a heck of a good writer, and he knows his music, so listening to him spin his favorite songs is going to be interesting one way or another.

Your Amsterdam/The Snow Indian/Letters to Voltron/James Caronna @ Dean’s
Finally, there’s a cool-looking lineup at Dean’s tonight, with Letters to Voltron, who I’ve heard and liked quite a bit, plus newcomers The Snow Indian, who I’m very impressed with so far — they do a two-man, half-drunken punk-country-troubadour kind of thing that works a lot better than it sounds like it would — and James Caronna and Your Amsterdam, both of whom I’ve heard good things about. This one’s already underway, so get a move on…

Runners-Up:
Woody Pines/The Umbrella Man/Little Joe Washington @ The Continental Club
Zumiez Couch Tour, featuring Bun B & Trae the Truth @ Baybrook Mall (1355 W. Bay Area Blvd.)
Puppet/Love Knife/The Witherees/Quiet Morning and the Calamity @ Notsuoh
Lil Debbie/Squincy Jones @ Fitzgerald’s
Shellee Coley @ The Red Brick Tavern (Conroe)
Grizzly/Brother Dege/Truckstop Darlin’ @ Rudyard’s
Metalachi/Spastic Fit/Sundrunk @ The Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
Blaggards @ Shamrocks Pub (Humble)


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