Balaclavas

Okay, so I’ve needed to add Balaclavas to this here list for a long time now. Beyond the perennial culprits that are my general laziness and slowness, there’re a couple of outside factors to blame…

The Literary Greats

The most maddening thing about rootsy pop/rock guys The Literary Greats is just how sneaky they are. They stroll through song after song (three albums’ worth, since 2007) like they’re just there to have fun, smiling the whole damn time…

Scale The Summit

Most of the time, when I hear about a Houston band that’s got some promise or already sounds pretty cool, it starts small. I’ll hear a song or two online somewhere, or see their set at a festival or something…

Muhammad Ali

One of the best rock bands in town right now, Muhammad Ali (also spelled variously “MUHAMMADALi” or “Muhammadali”) are at first glance just this raw, noisy, messy force of nature, howling and hammering away at their instruments to create a furious squall…

Lisa’s Sons

I’ll admit that I wasn’t real sure about these guys the first time I caught ’em. The two “Sons,” Stefan Mach and Jordan Brady, climbed onstage to stand in front of a modest bank of keyboards and samplers, then dove headlong into a primary-colored, synth-heavy, freakishly earnest, sugary-sweet pop explosion…

Tambersauro

Damn. Just as I was finally going to write these guys up, I heard a hint that the three guys in Tambersauro — guitarist Michael Blackshear, bassist Jeff Price, and drummer/laptop-mangler Lance Higdon

the last place you look

It’s funny, but I looking back I can say with certainty that I never would’ve predicted where these guys ended up. Long, long ago, guitarist Richard Sherwood and vocalist Justin Nava used to be in a very cool, awesomely promising funk-rock band…

The Born Liars

I don’t really know why I waffled on these guys as long as I did — I’d been hearing great, great stuff about the Born Liars for a couple of years, but I’d always kind of shrugged and blew ’em off. I’d liked frontman/guitarist/singer Jimmy Sanchez (who apparently also writes all the songs) in his […]

The Suspects

Back again, once is the incredible…yes, it’s true — The Suspects are back & rejuvenated. Hep, hep, hep… The band broke up for several years there, after nearly a decade of full-on old-school ska, and man, was I bummed. The band had hit some rocky points, due to some personnel shakeups and a general lack of time…

The Mathletes

I love pop. Honest, I really, truly do — I do the dark-and-dour thing, too, but few things make me happy like a well-crafted, intelligent, quirky pop song. Which explains, frankly, why I dig The Mathletes so damn much. In spite of all protestations to the contrary…

Something Fierce

Damn. I just can’t say enough things about these crazy kids. You wouldn’t think it to look at ’em, but when this little threesome picks up their instruments, their brand of catchy, bitterly tuneful, raw-but-not-messy garage-rock just plain knocks me off my feet…

Sharks and Sailors

Holy fucking shit. I can’t believe it’s taken me this damn long to put these folks on this little page. Why? To put it bluntly, because they’re probably the best indie-rock band in town right now; no offense to the many, many other talented bands doing their thing here in H-town, but Sharks and Sailors are truly something else…

Teenage Kicks

These three guys (guitarist/singer Kirke Campbell, bassist Stewart Anderson, & drummer John Baldwin) are one of the best damn bands in town right now, no lie. I’m not quite sure how they do it, but they’re like the freakin’ embodiment of power-pop. They take everything I love about all those bands…

Young Mammals

Damn, that energy is incredible. It took me a while to really get into Young Mammals (formerly known as The Dimes, before some punk-ass bunch of Oregonians threatened ’em over the name), but after finally getting to see them full-force at the Houston Press Awards showcase…

The Tontons

I know it’s the height of cliché to declare that some band’s sound is “unique,” but damn it, that’s where I’m at with The Tontons. They really, truly sound like no other band I know, whether you’re talking about Houston or parts further afield. The band meshes together heavy, head-nodding psychedelic rock…

listenlisten

I know, I know — I’m slow on this one. Did an actual interview with these guys, and yet it takes me this long to actually get ’em up here? Sad, sad, sad…. Especially so because listenlisten (or LISTEN!LISTEN!, apparently) is one of the absolute leading lights of Houston’s undersung…

By the End of Tonight

Against all odds, yes, this quartet from the rural down-home-iness of Alvin (just south of H-town) has turned into one of the city’s few true indie success stories. They sent off their self-reeased A Letter to the Sandbox EP off to hipster-cred haven Temporary Residence Limited…

georgia’s Horse.

I’m breathing a sigh of relief on this one; when I finally downloaded a track or two from the band’s MySpace site, I was utterly bowled over…only to discover that they’d broken up not long before. Ah, crap… Luckily for me, they appear to once again be back together…

Update: NOFX (2/26!) + dUg Pinnick + ASG + Able Baker Fox + New Featured Bands + More

Yep, got a bunch of new stuff up lately, including a nicely-sized (I think, anyway) pile of reviews. There’s one of the new NOFX live disc, which is surprisingly good despite the title (these days I find myself blasting “You’re Wrong” and “Franco-Unamerican” while driving around, at least as long as my daughter’s not in […]

The Riff Tiffs

Been meaning to add these folks for a while now, but I kept running into one big-ass stumbling block — how the hell do I describe ’em? The Riff Tiffs don’t really fit into any particular box, stepping easily from Secret Machines-esque spacerock to Explosions in the Sky instro-rock atmospherics…

Buxton

Straight out of LaPorte, out in the Houston ‘burbs, comes some of the coolest mostly-acoustic music you’re likely to hear this side of Austin. Buxton are one of a small handful of indie-folk bands in town who’ve taken the current folk idiom and pulled it backwards to an earlier time…

The Gold Sounds

These three guys came out of nowhere, both with respect to yours truly and actual geography — they’re right out of Deer Park, on the edge of the ever-scenic Houston Ship Channel, and the first I heard of ’em besides their name came in the form of a self-released CDEP and DVD they sent in…

The Fatal Flying Guilloteens

Seen these guys a few times now, and each time they impress me more and more. First and foremost, well, they’re absolutely insane, and ear-destruction-level loud. They play Estrus-style garage rock/pop, really, all the while dressed up in silly outfits…

Latch Key Kids

Hot damn, they’re back together… Nearly a decade after they split up, the Latch Key Kids are back together — older, wiser, and hopefully just as good as they were back in the day. I can’t say what they sound like this time ’round, but the old stuff cool California-style hardcore punk…

The Linus Pauling Quartet

Long time coming, this one. Six freakin’ albums in, and I’ve finally been sucked in by the LP4’s heavy-ass, sludgy brand of psych-rock. Their latest, All Things Are Light, is what really hammered it home for me, honestly — it’s got fuzz thick enough to slice and spread on toast…

Piano Vines

Yeah, I’ve been fully intending on putting these folks on here for a while, but I held off in the foolish hope that I’d either eventually A) get to see ’em live or B) manage to glom onto an actual CD. Neither of which, unfortunately, have happened. That’s partly my own damn fault, obviously…

Stadium

It’s nice when things make sense sometimes. I mean, how the hell can I not like Stadium, considering that these guys have a pretty distinguished pedigree — guitarist/vocalist Jeffrey Stilwell, guitarist/vocalist Ramzi Beshara, bassist Stephen Henderson, and drummer Clay Jasper have all been in badass H-town bands…

Hearts of Animals

With Hearts of Animals, singer/songwriter Mlee Marie Suprean has managed to create something very cool and unique, at least within our insular little Houston scene. I mean, we’ve got a metric ton of folkies with guitars, enough to re-populate Lilith Fair several times over, but Suprean’s thrown the whole idea on its head…

Ryan Scroggins and the Trenchtown Texans

I was depressed as hell to hear that the seemingly indestructible Los Skarnales had finally called it a day, but I have to admit that I’m damn happy to see what’s come out of the wreckage. It seems like nearly every member of the band has gone on to form another band; it’s like they’re the Rodan of Houston ska, seriously…

the I*GENTS

Okay, so this one’s been out-of-date for a while, unfortunately… The story starts back in the day with a band of ska kids from Texas City called Secret Agent 8. I first saw ’em at the 2nd Annual Zippfest (can’t even remember what year that was, now), and even then I was impressed…

I-45

Yeah, yeah, I should’ve put these guys up here long ago…oh, well — they’re up here now, alright? Anyway, the mysterious duo/trio known as I-45 (Tripp Von Slipp, Tech Ron B., aka Techronious, and either DJ Rudy Martinez 2000 in the early days or DJ Destro more recently) happen to be one of the few…

Jana Hunter

Yes, Matty & Mossy is unfortunately dead and gone, its members scattered to the four winds, but thankfully, vocalist/guitarist Jana Hunter is still making music, now out on her lonesome. These days it’s just her, a guitar, and a Mini-Disc full of backing tracks…

The Jonx

My, how they’ve grown… I’ve been a fan of The Jonx for a few years now, from back when the band was a member or two larger than it is now (ex-Jonxers Shawn Durrani and Viki Kenner have moved on to other things), and heck, I remember guitarist Stu Smith from back in both our college days…

The Phlegmatics

Man, there are too damn few bands in town like this; most rock bands that try to be funny seem to do so at the expense of the actual music, instead throwing lame jokes at half-assed punk tunes or faux-hardcore posturing. Which is a damn shame, because The Phlegmatics manage to fit in both sarcastic, self-deprecating humor…

Tody Castillo

Yep, another one I’ve been very, very remiss in listing. Actually, Tody was on this very page once, what seems like a really freakin’ long time ago — he fronted a band called Tody and the Royals, who put out one excellent, excellent tape…

The Church of Philadelphia

Yes, it may be somewhat hard to believe, but there’s finally a gospel (well, sorta) band in town that appeals even to a heathen like yours truly. And really, it makes sense if you look at these folks’ combined pedigrees — they’ve apparently got a ton of experience under their belts individually…

Bring Back The Guns

Y’know, I like a fair number of bands in this town (as evidenced by how freakin’ long this page has gotten), but it’s still pretty rare that anybody just blows me away. Occasionally, though, it happens…

A New Featured Band + New Reviews, Just for You…

Yep, new stuff up on the site, just in time for the end of May. Ch-ch-check it out… New Featured Band: The Scattered PAGES Reviews: Arthur Yoria; Land Of Talk; The Little Heroes; The Horrors; Sedalia; Sine Qua Non; Mick Sterling; & Tammany Hall Machine. More to come. (No, really.)

The Scattered PAGES

Yeah, that’s just a wee bit embarrassing — one of the best, most original, neato-est bands in my own damn city…and I end up learning about ’em (pretty much) in the pages of CMJ. Argh. Granted, I’d heard of the band, heard good things about ’em, but never actually heard them…

Indian Jewelry

I’ll be as up-front as I can as to the reason why I’ve neglected to put Indian Jewelry, or Swarm of Angels, or NTX + Electric, or NTX + Erika Thrasher, or Nikki Texas up here: I have no freakin’ idea how to describe ’em. All these bands (they’ve also gone by the names Corpses of Waco, Turquoise Diamonds…


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