Yr. Weekend, Pt. 1: the last place you look + Venomous Maximus + Omotai + Perma + Sunrise & Ammunition + Two Star Symphony + More

1470298_10151742410162015_1616228224_nDamn, y’all. Not sure if it’s the time of year or Day Job-related madness or what (little of both, most likely), but yeah, it’s been rough over here in SCR-Land lately, and as a result, some things have fallen through the cracks. Like, um, half of last weekend’s shows…

I didn’t want the same thing to happen this weekend, however, because starting tonight, Friday, December 20th, there is some truly great stuff going on. Here goes:

the last place you look (EP release)/Otenki/Born Again Virgins/Soap Box Revolution/Runaway Sun @ Warehouse Live
First & foremost, there’s this show, which tops my list by a pretty big margin, honestly, and for several reasons. #1 — the last place you look are a freaking phenomenal band, one of the best post-emo rock bands I’ve ever, ever, ever heard, and their 2009 album, See the Light Inside You, has lived in my car’s CD player (yes, I still have one of those) and/or MP3 player for the past four years, nearly without interruption.

#2 — I was cajoled into going to TLPYL’s annual holiday show back in December 2011, and holy freaking crap was it a blast. Seriously, folks; I’m an old, jaded, cynical, can-I-go-home-yet? bastard when it comes to shows, and it takes quite a bit to make me really, truly psyched about actually sticking around for the whole damn thing. This show, though, rose well above most of the shows I’ve seen over the past couple of years, and damn, it still makes me smile. Check out the pics I took from the 2011 show over here.

#3 — This also happens to be TLPYL’s release show, for their long-anticipated EP, Rip It Out. I was handed early-early masters of a couple of the songs that are (maybe?) on the EP, waaaaaay back in early 2012 or so, and I was very impressed even then. I’m really looking forward to finally hearing the followup to Light.

#4 — Because the guys in TLPYL are such nice, friendly dudes, yes, they’ve brought along some other folks to play the show, as well. I haven’t actually seen most of ’em, but I’ve been seriously wanting to see both Otenki and Born Again Virgins, in particular, for a while now, and I’ve heard good things about Runaway Sun, too. Oh, and if you couldn’t tell from #1-4 above, yes, this is most likely where I will be tonight; say “hi” if you’re out and about up at the Warehouse Live, as well…

1499578_10152067294189738_1437232832_nEnd of the World Fest II, featuring Venomous Maximus, Warmaster, Eagle Claw, Pillcrusher, Omotai, Funeral Horse, Bowel, Blood Royale, Tron Sack, & Dickey Hands @ Fitzgerald’s (free!/$10)
Of course, maybe you don’t want so much of those emo melodies in your rock; y’know, I get that. Sometimes I, too, just want to howl and scream and crush things, kaiju-style.

And you’re in luck, because that is what every damn band on the bill tonight up at Fitzgerald’s is going to make you want to do — to a one, they are loud, raw, and heavy as fuck, particularly Omotai, Funeral Horse, and badass headliners Venomous Maximus. The former two are more in the sludgy/doom-y metal vein, while the latter takes the doom feel and marries it to a more old-school metal sound (to my ears, anyway), then sings about evil from the far depths of the cosmos, burning witches, and blood-drenched warriors. If you haven’t yet listened to last year’s Beg Upon The Light, well, you really should.

Max Bemis/Matt Pryor/Sherri DuPree-Bemis/Perma (mem. of Eisley/Say Anything)/Merriment @ Warehouse Live (Studio)
I’ve got to be honest on this one: while this definitely sounds cool, I’m a little nervous, not least of all because the lineup seems to mutate every time I see it. First it was just Perma, the new-ish side project of husband & wife duo Max Bemis (Say Anything) and Sherri DuPree-Bemis (Eisley); then it was a full-blown acoustic tour with Bemis, DuPree-Bemis, and Matt Pryor (Get Up Kids. All things considered, I’ve been pretty psyched for either.

Now, though, the Warehouse Live bill only says “Max Bemis”; if that’s the case, I’m a bit bummed, because I’ve been enjoying the hell out of Perma’s Two of a Crime — the interplay between Bemis and his wife is amazing, and the songs are sweet but poignant at the same time, just like, well, an actual, real-live romance generally tends to be. Here’s hoping tonight’s show is the whole ball of wax.

Avant Garden Algebraic Christmas Party, featuring Sunrise & Ammunition, Sleepy, Ballerino, Mannequin Mishap, Blast DAD, & Cashus @ Avant Garden ($5; 8PM)
The Avant Garden has an intruigingly-titled Christmas shindig going on tonight, too, the Algebraic Christmas Party. Why “Algebraic”? Honestly, I’ve got no idea, but headliners Sunrise & Ammunition do have a fair bit of math-rock in their musical DNA, so maybe that’s the general idea; of course, it helps that the band is flat-out awesome, especially live, effortlessly burning through mind-meltingly prog-/math-y riffs and arrangements like they’re playing three-chord Green Day covers.

1452018_10152093624419063_1918868193_nThere’ve been some relatively-recent lineup changes, btw; Sea Engine apparently had to drop off, so now Galvestonians Blast DAD have taken their place, and Dudebro fell off the bill, too, which is a cool thing to me, anyway, because it means excellent newcomers Cashus can fit in the early slot (which, um, is starting right now).

Two Star Symphony @ Pearl Lounge (4216 Washington; free!)
And last but absolutely not least, you can head on up to Washington, to the newly-reopened Pearl Lounge (which is where the Pearl Bar used to be, and where Mary Jane’s and Fat Cat’s were, as well, way, way Back In The Day), and watch in glee as strange-yet-beautiful chamber quartet Two Star Symphony proceed to creep the hell out of the nicely-dressed Washington Ave. denizens. If you’re a fan of any kind of classical-ish music (or horror-movie scores, for that matter), you really need to catch this band at some point. They’re freaking phenomenal.

(I may have to actually check out the Pearl Lounge itself at some point, btw; it looks nicely dive-y, at least in pictures I’ve seen so far…)

Runners-Up:
Dwight Yoakam @ Arena Theater
Flamin’ Hellcats/Poor Dumb Bastards/Donkey Punch @ Rudyard’s
Secret Prostitutes/Curb Biters/The Real Energy/Turbokrieg @ Walter’s
Christmas Singalong, hosted by Martin Burniston @ McGonigel’s Mucky Duck
The Dirty Verbs/The Traffik Jams/Jay Satellite/Dionysus @ Notsuoh ($3/$8)
Kelly Doyle Trio/DNCSxWLVS @ MKT Bar (1001 Austin; 5-11PM)
Live at Aloft: The Sounds of MensWear, featuring DJ Act Badd @ Aloft Houston (5415 Westheimer)


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