Chain of Keys: The Best of The Week
PJ Harvey. Photo: Maria Mochnacz
Well, we certainly have a ton of options to choose from this week. Alongside a ton of offerings from local acts, legends like PJ Harvey and Pixies will be here as well as the likes of Little Dragon, A Perfect Circle and Xavier Wulf. Houston, here’s where to spend your time this week.
On Wednesday you can get started with LA punk pop cult rock heroes, Redd Kross upstairs at White Oak Music Hall. While these guys were never commercially huge, that doesn’t mean that their entertaining style and subversive act shouldn’t go unnoticed. They’re here in support of their latest album, 2012’s Researching The Blues, and they’re a trip to see play live. Houston’s The Satanic Overlords of Rock N Roll will bring their beer fueled punk energy on as direct support while the tongue in cheek punk of The Cops will open things up for the all ages show with doors at 7 pm and has tickets between $12 and $17.
Little Simz. Photo: Wired PR
In the studio at Warehouse Live, California’s Ab-Soul will bring his hip hop jams to life. This guy is kind of the king of the slow boil with tracks that seem to drip like honey. His latest, Do What Thou Wilt from last year has critical acclaim, with hints of grime that change up his game. England’s hottest new MC, Little Simz will bring her mic skills on as direct support and opener for the all ages show with doors at 7 pm and with tickets between $23 and $28.
River Oaks Theatre will host a screening of the feature documentary, “I Am Battle Comic” alongside a Q&A session. The film, covers comics like Houston’s Slade Ham who perform for the troops in war torn countries, and features sets and interviews with comics George Lopez, George Wallace, Tammy Pescatelli and Slade Ham. The event will be hosted by Outlaw Dave, and he will moderate the Q&A as well. The one night only event will donate the proceeds to Militaryfamilies.org. The doors are at 7 pm with tickets for $15.
Oddisee. Photo: Shore Fire Media
Over at Walter’s, the hip hop of Brooklyn’s Oddisee will be on full display, backed by the live band Good Company. Oddisee has been gaining traction in the hip hop world with albums that hit deep within like they should, alongside crazed live sets. His latest release, this year’s The Iceberg is a mix of jazz, hard beats, gospel and R&B soul that’s pretty amazing. The rock and soul of DC born and UK transplant, Oliver St. Louis will be on as direct support and opener for the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and with tickets between $15 and $17.
Thursday you could head to House of Blues for the popular prog fusion of New York’s Coheed and Cambria. Here in support of last year’s celebrated The Color Before The Sun, these guys bring their game when they play live. Massachusetts’ The Dear Hunter will be on as direct support and opener for the all ages show with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $35 and $59.
Red House. Photo: Dinolion
The opening night of Red House will take place from the team at Dinolion at an undisclosed location. The ultra secretive and immersive performance, should be nothing if not intriguing and engaging, as it’s being put on by a small group of very talented people. Principal dance from Houston Ballet, music from Black Kite and LIMB, and lots of mystery surround these shows. There’s more information here for the 17 & up show with doors at 7:45 pm or 10:45 pm and tickets for $35. The show runs through the weekend with a super limited amount of tickets available.
LA’s Dengue Fever will bring their blend of psych and Cambodian rock to Walter’s. Known for a crazy live show, this six piece makes groovy tunes, and their newest album The Deepest Lake from 2015 is a trip. The gorgeous pedal steel of Will Van Horn will be on as direct support and opener on the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and tickets between $15 and $17.
Little Dragon. Photo: IB Kamara
Downstairs at White Oak Music Hall, Swedish electro pop four piece Little Dragon will make their return to town. Always full of fun and life when they play live, their set was pretty refreshing last year at Day For Night. They usually sell out wherever they play, and their latest Season High is pretty hard to resist. The hip hop of DC’s Goldlink will be on as direct support while LA’s Kronika will open things up at the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and tickets for $35.
If you’re a fan of Unknown Mortal Orchestra, then you might want to check out Whitney at The Secret Group. The folk pop duo made up of Julien Ehrlich and Max Kakacek will bring their chill vibes from last year’s Light Upon The Lake to life. The alt pop of LA’s Golden Daze will go on beforehand and Houston’s Deep Cuts will bring their indie rock sounds on as openers for the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and tickets for $15.
Tifa Tittlywinks of Dem Damn Dames. Photo: Penland Pinups
On Friday you could start off at Numbers with the ladies of Dem Damn Dames for their Naked Nerds VS. Dirty Dorks show. The theme show is where this Houston burlesque troupe shines, and this Nerdlesque show is a great example of that. The battle of the ages will feature the Dames themselves alongside performances from San Antonio’s Kristi Waters, Austin’s Layna D’Luna, Houston’s Honey Moonpie and many more. Judged by a crew that includes Houston comic Ryan Thauburn and radio personality Kyle King, the show should be worth making it out for. The show has doors at 7 pm, it’s 18 & up, and there are tickets between $15 and $30, and they include entry into Classic Numbers which follows the show.
The final show over at Insomnia before they move to the East side, will see a solo art exhibition from Honeybones called Dizzy Spells in Dreamland. If you’ve never seen the art of Honeybones, you’ve been missing out. One of the most exciting new artists in Houston, this show should be pretty awesome. There’s also beer from Eureka Heights Brewing and a food truck from Muiishi Makaritos. The all ages show gets going around 7 pm and it’s 100% FREE.
You can get your laugh on at the Improv when Deon Cole brings his hilarious brand of humor to the club. Cole is best known for his role on the hit TV show Black-Ish, though his time on CONAN was pretty hilarious, and he’s a seasoned comic as well. The 18 & up shows don’t mention which two Houston comics will be feature act and host, but the tickets are between $25 and $37, with shows through the weekend with varying door times. This show has doors at 7 pm and 9 pm.
A Perfect Circle. Photo: Speakeasy PR
If you were planning to catch A Perfect Circle out at Smart Financial Center, the show has since sold out. If you’re already attending, the doors are at 8 pm.
Over at Walter’s, the first of several Wonky Power curated shows will take place with a headlining set from Tax The Wolf. The Houston band that melding together psych and prog with ease is back and should drop something at some point this year, while their live shows are still as mesmerizing as when they released Hold The Sun. The indie pop of Mind Shrine will go on prior while the bluesy psych of Mantra Love will go on beforehand. The intriguing electro rock of JERK will open the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and a $10 cover.
Jealous Creatures. Photo: Daniel Jackson
You can get all of the loud rock motors running at Satellite Bar when Bryan’s The Ex-Optimists swing by to perform. There’s something about this band that’s hard not to love. Complete with one of the loudest live sets you can see, their latest 7” release Bee Corpse Thousand features a killer new song and covers of the Guided By Voices classics, “Drinker’s Peace,” and “14 Cheerleader Coldfront.” The new wave tinged indie rock of Houston’s Jealous Creatures will go on beforehand while the tight straightforward rock of Brand New Hearts will perform prior. Slow Future will get things going for the all ages show with doors at 8 pm and a TBA cover.
Over at Rudyard’s you can catch Houston’s The Guillotines for their album release party. While it’s been a long time coming, the band has as rich of a history as any leather punk band could have, and their sets are always full of plenty of antics. The glitter punk of Dallas’ Scary Cherry & the Bang Bangs will be on as direct support while the punk metal mixture of Houston’s The Unconvicted will open the 21 & up show with doors at 9 pm with a $6 cover.
Saturday you could start off at Walter’s for Bushfest. No, it’s not an homage to that crappy British nineties alt rock band, but rather a collection of artists under one roof. Sets from GRRRL Parts, Dillon Trimm, Brumes, Devil Killing Moth and more will perform alongside comedy sets from Britt Vasicek, Katie McGee and more. The all ages festival gets going with doors at 6 pm and tickets for $10. There’s much more happening there with all of the information here.
Twin Peaks. Photo: Red Light Management
The Secret Group will host Chicago garage indie rockers, Twin Peaks. These guys have made quite the name for themselves as an act worth making it out for with crazy live shows. Their latest release, Down in Heaven from last year mixes multiple rock genres, and should sound amazing live. The indie grunge of Nashville’s Chrome Pony will be on as direct support while things get opened by the psych pop of Chicago’s Post Animal. The all ages show has doors at 7 pm and tickets between $15 and $17.
Down at Scout Bar you could get all of your industrial rock fix when the industrial pop of Chicago’s Stabbing Westward performs. You know you’ve made an impression when Wesley Willis writes a song about you, and at one time, these guys were huge with their song “Save Yourself.” They’ll be here supporting it appears nothing, as their last album was over fifteen years ago. Houston industrial mainstays, The Hunger will be on as direct support with Hindsight on beforehand. The female fronted hard rock of Black Market Tragedy will open the 18 & up show with doors at 7 pm and tickets for $13.
Revention Music Center will have a special performance from England’s PJ Harvey. While the nineties had plenty of female performers worth seeing, few have stood the test of time like Harvey, and with a stellar live show and her new album The Hope Six Demolition Project, this is one of those sets you don’t want to miss. There’s no word of support or openers, but that could change. The doors are at 7:30 pm and tickets are between $35 and $79.50.
Tee Vee. Photo: John Allen Stephens
Civic TV will host the album release from Houston’s Tee Vee. Armed with only demos until now, Tee Vee has played Day For Night while getting on some killer shows in between. The dark electronica of MIEARS will be on hand as direct support while a solo set from Andrew Lee will get the night going. The all ages event has doors at 8 pm and the all ages show is BYOB with a $5 cover.
D&W Lounge will have the album release from Houston’s Bernie Pink. I’m not sure if I conveyed this when I debuted their album Fiesta Elementary, but this band makes psych music that sounds like it was recorded in an insane asylum. Seriously, they’re one of the most intriguing new Houston bands going, and their live shows are a trip. popeNQM will be on as direct support while the experimental punk of Houston’s Black Lodge will go on prior. The experimental sounds of Austin’s Ballerino will also be on the bill and Houston’s Lagmind will open the 100% FREE show with doors at 8 pm.
On Sunday you could head to 8th Wonder Brewery for the Crawfish & Brews show. Honestly, I hate crawfish and the sight and sound of others eating them, so it says a lot about this show, as it’s headlined by NOLA’s DJ Mannie Fresh. Possibly one of the greatest to step behind the decks, Fresh is an act everyone should see at least once. The indie rock of The Bright Light Social Hour will also be on the bill, as will Bombon and Havoc Wagon. DAYTA will get things going as only he can for the all ages event with doors at noon and tickets between $15 and $40.
Pixies. Photo: Travis Shinn
Of course, I’d guess many over you will be on the lawn at White Oak Music Hall to enjoy a set from Boston indie rockers, Pixies. It occurs to me that most Pixies “fans” really just want the band to remake Surfer Rosa, which is asking a lot. The fact is, their last two albums Indie Cindy and last year’s Head Carrier are both pretty solid, and their live shows are always on point. The indie pop of New York’s Public Access TV will be on as direct support and openers for the all ages show with gates at 6 pm and with tickets between $42.50 and $49.
Revention Music Center will host the return of the massively popular rapper, Lil’ Wayne. I shouldn’t have to sell this show, or Wayne, as you know his resume and catalog. His latest release, “No Frauds” with Drake and Nicki Minaj is as lit as his other works, and his live shows are always intense. There’s no word of support or openers, which should change for the all ages show with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $60 and $65.
In the studio at Warehouse Live, Tennessee’s Xavier Wulf will bring his hype and crazed rap to life. Wulf has been popping off over the past year, his live shows are intense, and his latest drop Project X from 2015 is pretty legit. Houston’s TheRealFlexGod will be on as direct support while Riven, RichBrokeDudez, Blvackempiiire will all go on prior. High Elements will open the all ages show with doors at 6 pm with tickets between $29 and $33.
Trey Anastasio. Photo: Red Light Management
If you’d rather marvel in some great guitar work, you could head to House of Blues to catch a solo set from Trey Anastasio. Known as leader of the group Phish, Anastasio is a pretty strong player, and his latest release Paper Wheels from two years ago is pretty chill while still being groovy. There’s no word of support or openers, though that could change. The all ages show has doors at 7 pm and tickets for $42.
Tuesday out at the Woodlands Pavilion, you could catch the return of Kings of Leon. Boy, these guys have really blown up. I caught them once at a now defunct club here in town, and they were pretty amazing, plus their new album Walls is sonic and lush. The noise rock of Atlanta’s Deerhunter will be on hand as direct support and Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats will open the all ages show with gates at 6 pm and tickets between $32.50 and $89.50.
You could swing by The Secret Group for Neo Benshi 31. Presented by Bootown, this show that’s like a miniature Mystery Science Theater 3000, is pretty hilarious. Featuring comics and the like reading monologues over video clips, it’s a show you need to check out if you want to get your laugh on. The all ages show has doors at 7 pm and a measly $5 cover.
That’s about all that’s happening this week. No matter what you decide to do, please be mindful of everyone else and remember that a safe way home is what’s best for everyone.