Yr. Weekend, Pt. 1: The Wheel Workers + Glass the Sky + A Sundae Drive + Moon Honey + the last place you look + Blood on the Strand + Deleted Scenes + More

1658410_719142681438374_2084352167_oHey, all — it’s Friday, April 18th, crawling/dragging halfway through the month, and holy crap is it a busy weekend (in a good way, mind you). First, though, a little bad news: got word earlier in the week that EDM hero Avicii has had to cancel his May 11th date here in H-town, due to having to recently undergoing gallbladder surgery. He’s okay, which is good, but apparently the doctors don’t think he should be dropping the bass or whatever it is The Kids talk about EDM people doing.

I’m kind of bummed, actually, because I really like last year’s True, even after the munchkins made my wife play it over and over and over and over again in the car. Ah, well; maybe next time…

Now, on to things that are actually going on tonight — here we go:

The Wheel Workers/Glass the Sky/A Sundae Drive @ Fitzgerald’s ($7)
Oh, yes. I am going to try my damnedest to make it out of the house tonight, because this show up at Fitzgerald’s packs three of my absolute-favorite indie-pop bands in town all onto one stage. Wow. Seriously, this is kind of melting my brain.

First up this evening are A Sundae Drive, who I love first and foremost for taking all that fuzzy-edged, Pixies-/Seam-esque indie-rock I loved (and still love) back in the day and melding ’em together with sweet-voiced, kind-hearted, shimmery-shiny indie-pop goodness. Their 2011 EP You’re Gonna Get Me is still one of my favorite things to listen to, and I’m desperately looking forward to the new album I hear(?) they’re working on.

Then there’s Glass the Sky, who dwell in a neighboring realm of indie-pop goodness but take a more prog tack, jauntily bouncing along beneath intertwining guitar lines and gently-smiling, intensely-smart lyrics (which, yes, ASD has, too). They’re another band who’s got me waiting, too — I’ve been eagerly awaiting their forthcoming full-length since the release of their self-titled EP back in 2012.

And finally, there’s the headliners, burgeoning indie-rock icons The Wheel Workers. I’ve rarely seen a band come out of nowhere, relatively speaking, and surge up to the top of the pile like these folks have, both in terms of music and performance. They’re at once playful and serious, grinning as they blaze through cheery songs about chemicals in our air and water, economics, gay rights, drone warfare, and changing the whole damn world, and they do it with songs that are damn-near hypnotically catchy. They’re sharp but shiny, brightly-colored, and smarter than any roundtable talk show crap you’ve ever seen.

1836927_615297198563780_1566700702_oOh, and the reason they’re doing this show tonight, BTW, is for the vinyl re-release of last year’s sublime Past to Present. I got a hold of a copy of it today (thanks, Steven!), and it is seriously niiice. Get your own, people, tonight.

Moon Honey/Mannequin Mishap/Sunrise and Ammunition/Dark Spark Rays/Wayword @ Warehouse Live (Green Room)
Okay, so despite the lengthy writeup, that’s far from the only great show happening, and here’s the closest runner-up of the bunch… Baton Rouge-dwellers Moon Honey are back in town, and that’s cause to celebrate, because they’re a truly cool, absolutely unique band, one that I’m told are awesome to witness live. They remind me oddly of a kinda roots-tinged version of Houston’s own Tontons, mostly because they mash together psych-rock with fragile-sounding female vocals and straight-up pop tunefulness, but there’s also a heavy dose of metallic thunder and (on the other side of things) a whole lot of delicate folkiness. Their most recent album, Hand-Painted Dream Photographs, is mesmerizing.

Plus, they’re playing with probably my favorite prog-instro-metal band at the moment, Sunrise and Ammunition — I got to catch them last fall and was completely bowled over by the colossal, ridiculously intricate sound those young dudes were making. It was like watching a master clockmaker build a clock by hand, carefully but confidently placing each and every little piece right where it needed to go. Highly recommended, y’all.

10003892_653760847994796_2043650523_nthe last place you look (acoustic) @ Pennisons Sports Pub (Sugar Land)
A little bit beyond the usual Inner Loop-ness of most of these listings, there’s a pretty great show down in Sugar Land tonight, with heavy alt-rock dudes the last place you look turning off their amps and doing a free acoustic show at Pennison’s Sports Pub. I’ve raved & raved about this band in the past, I know, but I can’t help it — they’re honestly just one of my favorite bands, period, from here or anywhere else. They’re just freaking great, writing and playing songs that hit that perfect post-emo rock spot for yours truly.

I’ll admit, though, that I’ve never seen ’em play acoustic, so I don’t fully know what that’ll be like. Based on the video below, though, it looks like it could be damned neat:
 


 

Metal Mass, featuring Blood on the Strand, Widower, Destroyer of Light, & Funeral Horse @ Paradise Seawall Beach Bar (Galveston; $5)
For those living even further south of 610 (or who’re willing to make the drive), there’s an excellent surprise of a show happening at the Paradise Seawall Beach Bar down in Galveston. Kicking things off are sludgy, slow-moving doom-sters Funeral Horse, whom I love a whole damn lot, but they’re also playing with cool-sounding G-town band Blood on the Strand, who get props for incorporating their hometown in their name and who play (from what I’ve seen so far, at least) some impressive metalcore. Go early, stay late.

Deleted Scenes/Brass Bed/Caldwell/Hoofprints @ Mango’s
Last but definitely not least, Mango’s has a good one tonight, too, with propulsive art-rockers Deleted Scenes. The band’s wavered for me over the years; I’ve always felt like I should like ’em, like their Killers-meet-Pixies breed of rock should be right up my alley, but for some reason, it’s never worked quite right, y’know?

With just-released album Lithium Burn, though, it finally feels like it’s clicking. I’ve only listened a couple of times so far, but damn, it’s hard not to like this album. It’s surprisingly theatrical, with parts that are way more nuanced and fragile than anything I’ve heard from the band ’til now (see “Landfall,” in particular); gonna have to keep that one going for a while, definitely. Check out the strange-yet-alluring video for “Stutter,” right here:
 


 

And hey, they’re playing with local emo-ish post-punk guys Hoofprints, whose 2012 release, Secretly Destroying Honesty, is just plain excellent, so there’s that as an added bonus…

Runners-Up:
Baths/Young Fathers/Stephen Farris @ Fitzgerald’s
Quiet Morning & The Calamity/Placid Blue/The Mavens @ The Continental Club
Devin The Dude/Potluck/Cool Nutz/J. Hornay/Blaze 1/Raj the Rapper @ Warehouse Live
Green River Ordinance/Jillian Edwards/Tim Halperin @ House of Blues
The Sabbat Fest 2014, featuring Vadimion, Hellgoat, Set, Whore of Bethlehem, Funeral Rites, Legion, & Avaris @ Walter’s ($10)
Carolyn Wonderland Band @ Dosey Doe (Conroe)
Musique Non Stop, featuring Ceeplus Bad Knives & more @ Clutch City Squire (410 Main)
Fistful of Soul DJs @ The Big Top
Blaggards @ Ashford Pub


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