Yr. Week, Pt. 1: LVL UP + Two Knights + football, etc. + Jay Farrar + Chase Hamblin + BRONCHO + Low Litas + More

1006079_10152801389386812_1710134126677063454_n (1)Normally, I wouldn’t be posting on a measly Wednesday — nothing against the day, specifically, but just because of time constraints and Life In General — but y’know, I’m attempting to be a little more timely about these things, dammit, and just because a show doesn’t happen on Friday or Saturday doesn’t mean it’s not good, right?

With that in mind, here’s a handful of excellent things happening tonight, October 29th:

LVL UP/Two Knights/football, etc./Archer Youngster @ The Summit (3536 Navigation)
First up, there’s a cool-sounding lineup over at The Summit on Navigation. I wasn’t real familiar with LVL UP before this week, but I’m liking ’em quite a bit already; they’re low-key, midtempo indie-rock, with low, occasionally out-of-tune vocals reminiscent of Austin’s The Gary or Kind of Like Spitting and a loopy, slow-staggering vibe that makes me think of both Sebadoh (good Sebadoh, mind you) and early Spoon, with enough quirky sharp bits sticking out to make things truly interesting.

They’re playing with Denton’s Two Knights, who are less indie-rock and more half-spazz/half-prog rock/screamo, a little like H-town’s own Giant Battle Monster (if a bit less over-the-top nuts). The songs lurch and trip and fall, the vocals alternate between full-on screaming and broken, quiet, emo-boy crooning, and somehow, it all fits together like it’s supposed to.

On the local front, one of my absolute-favorite bands from anywhere, football, etc., is playing, as well, and that’s a very, very cool thing. They’re just about the best damn late-’90s emo band that never existed (not back then, anyway), hitting every single mark in my personal book of This Is How Emo Should Sound and doing it with a delicate, melancholy ease. Lindsay Minton & her crew are awesome, seriously. Also opening are newcomers Archer Youngster, who I’ve only heard a teeny tiny bit of so far — two songs, specifically — but who are really damn promising, incorporating some nicely Braid-ish riffs and some desperate vocals. Get there early…

Jay Farrar/Chase Hamblin @ The Continental Club
This one damn near crept past me, I must admit, which is kind of crazy when you consider how much I love Jay Farrar. As a lot of Uncle Tupelo fans seems to’ve done over the decades since that band ceased to be, I fell on one side of the Farrar/Tweedy divide back in the day, and while I do like Wilco okay in general, I’m much, much more of a Son Volt/Farrar fan; his voice and songwriting, to me, are just about the definition of roots-rock/Americana, and there’s little he’s done that I don’t like. Even a middling Son Volt album still beats the hell out of most other things, to me.

So hey, just for fun, here’s a live video of the band doing “Loose String”:

No clue, really, what Farrar will be doing live — might be selections from New Multitudes, his Woody Guthrie tribute album from a couple of years back, might be Son Volt stuff, or it might be from his older, more rough-edged solo albums (which would especially cool, from where I sit).

c9f36abf3b29fa7b8d4385060e539c11Go find out, and be sure you get there in time to see the stellar Chase Hamblin open — he’s a truly great songwriter and musician in his own right, albeit in a fairly different direction. He’s a lot less roots-rock and more of a mishmash of ’60s pop and old-timey barroom music, at least on last year’s excellent VAUdeVILLE.

BRONCHO/Low Litas/Cactuscats @ Fitzgerald’s
The last of the bunch is also the quirkiest, by far, with Fitzgerald’s playing host tonight to BRONCHO and fellow Oklahomans & tourmates Low Litas, both of whom are damn good.

The former are ridiculously addictive in a shaky-yet-solid, fuzzy-edged, ’70s-tinged power-pop kind of way, with nicely Tom Petty-meets-Britt Daniel (to my ears, at least) vocals, especially on the half-stuttered “Class Historian”; they’ve got a Replacements-like looseness to ’em that’s very cool, but at the same time sound like escapees from a different time entirely. This here’s the video for the aforementioned track, which will burrow into your damn brain if you let it:

Low Litas, on the other hand, are dark, murky indie-rock, with guitars that come off like Bob Mould and sweet, alluring vocals, reminding me a little bit of Warpaint (and no, that’s not bad). Not a clue about Cactuscats, I’m afraid — I can’t find a damn thing about the band(?) except the name on the Fitz Website.

Runners-Up:
Imaginary Values, featuring Bad Luck & Ewen/Choice/Helton/Smith @ Khon’s
EzMoney/JVS REEI/Joel and Sammy of Disfrutalo!/Keno Sims/Feezarelli/Zahi/Guatamala Sosa/ScrewedupKane @ Super Happy Fun Land


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