Never Been Wrong: The Best of The Week
Waxahatchee, Photo: Jesse Riggins
A lot of tours are making their way to Houston this week, and we’ll get treated to the likes of Waxahatchee, Jimmy Eat World and Lionel Richie when they all swing through town. Of course, with locals like Clay Melton, El Lago, ImposterBoys and more rounding out the week, you will have plenty of entertaining options to choose from. Houston, here’s how to map out the following week.
On Wednesday you can get started at White Swan, which will have the pop punk of Maryland’s Braceface. When pop punk is good, it can be really, really good, and this band makes pretty solid pop punk. Refreshingly, their latest release, Chewie We’re Home, feels like it steers away from some of the bro-fueled pop punk that used to dominate the scene. The pop punk of Houston’s 54 Reasons will be on as direct support, while White House Party Crashers will go on beforehand. The emo of Houston’s Finger Guns will also be on the bill, and the acoustic punk of Bad Stand-Up will get the all-ages show started with doors at 7 pm and a $5 cover.
Kyle Hubbard, Photo: Jordan Asinas
Of course on Wednesday you might also find yourself at Warehouse Live in the ballroom for the hip hop of Phora. Here in support of his latest, With Love, this California native has been blowing up as of late. The Youtube sensation, Froggy Fresh, will be on hand as direct support. Are these guys for real or just a pretty elaborate joke? I actually don’t know, but their track “Dunked On” seems to have a sense of seriousness to it with all of its southern-twanged mic skills. Houston mainstay and mic spitting machine Kyle Hubbard will be on hand as well, while the heavy hitting sounds of Fullmetal will get things started. The all-ages show has doors at 7 pm and tickets $20 and $50, the latter being a VIP meet-and-greet option.
Thursday you can begin at Mucky Duck for the EP release from Houston’s Nathan Quick. The bluesy sounds of this guy are totally worth making it out for, and his The Los Angeles EP is definitely worth lending an ear to. Ashlynn Ivy will get things started with a solo set for the 21 & up show, with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $15 and $17.
At Joke Joint Comedy Showcase, the skit comedy of Ray William Johnson will be on hand. Johnson is quickly selling out all of his dates around the country, and he’s become known for his skits online. This h-town show has sold out as well, with two of Houston’s better up-and-coming comics serving as host and feature act. The 18 & up show has doors at 7 pm.
On Friday, you could get all the good vibes at Toyota Center, when Lionel Richie swings by to perform all the hits. And before you go thinking he doesn’t have an impressive back catalog, remember that tracks like “All Night Long,” “Hello,” Say You, Say Me” and “Dancing On The Ceiling” are just from his solo career. That’s before we steer into his hits with the Commodores. I caught Richie some years back, and he can still bring it. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Mariah Carey will also be on this show — as long as she doesn’t have another mic failing meltdown like on New Year’s Eve. I’m not sure if she’s performing her hits or not, but they’ll have Tauren Wells open the all-ages show with doors at 6 pm and tickets between $39.95 and $500.
Jimmy Eat World, Photo: CAA
At Cynthia Mitchell Woodlands Pavilion, Incubus will bring their mediocre sounds to all who attend the outdoor venue. I mean, they’re decent live, but just be prepared for their “jam” session I had to sit through when I saw them over a decade ago. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get amped to catch Jimmy Eat World, who’ll be on as direct support. Their last release, Integrity Blues, was their best in years, and they always bring it live. Nashville’s Judah & the Lion will get the all-ages show started with gates at 6 pm and tickets between $29.50 and $115.
Over at House of Blues, the always fun hip hop of 2 Chainz will bring down the house. This guy has never been a disappointment live, and his latest album, Pretty Girls Like Trap Music, is a tour de force. Memphis’ Young Dolph will be on as opener and direct support for the all-ages show with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $42 and $59.
Walter’s will host the alt prog metal of Oakland’s Free Salamander Exhibit. This five piece offers up weirdly prog-heavy sounds on their latest, Undestroyed, that sounds in some ways like Primus but with creepy vocals. The brutal prog rock noise of Houston’s Dead Time will be on as direct support, while Funeral Horse will get the all-ages show started with doors at 8 pm and tickets between $10 and $12.
Mockingbird Brother, Photo: Nikki Machacek
At Satellite Bar, the tripped-out psych fuzz pop of Chicago’s YAWN will be on full display. While this four-piece has become well known for their intriguing live shows, their last full-length album was three years ago with Love Chills. This year they dropped a new single called “Hum” that’s a total trip, and it should hopefully mean new tunes are on the way as well. The insane psych sounds of Houston’s Bernie Pink will be on as direct support, while the indie punk goodness of Mockingbird Brother will get the all-ages show started with doors at 8 pm for the free show. It is, however, $10 for the under 21 crowd.
Stereo Live will host a groove-heavy show when UK dubstep producer Cookie Monsta drops a set. This guy definitely knows how to drop the bass and get a room moving, and his latest drop, “Them,” from last year, is a definite thumper. Philadelphia’s Subtronics will drop a set as direct support, while California’s Uber gets things started on the 18 & up show with doors at 9 pm and tickets for $10.
Saturday you could get your tonk on when Sam Houston Race Park hosts the Beyond The Pines Music Festival. An all-day affair headlined by Texas’ Ryan Bingham, there’s plenty of other sounds available from acts like California’s Vintage Trouble, Oklahoma’s Jon Wolfe, and the soulful sounds of Alabama’s Anderson East. There’s plenty more acts on hand alongside food trucks, with more information available here. The all-ages event gets going with gates at 2 pm and tickets between $38 and $180.
Clay Melton, Photo: Daniel Jackson
Of course White Linen in the Heights will be taking place, and while you have a ton of options on who to see, you should definitely swing by Onion Creek to catch Clay Melton. Melton is on the verge of dropping a new album produced by Steve Christensen and Dan Workman, and his sound is full of bluesy tone and gritty guitar squeal. He’s pretty energetic in a live setting, and his latest single, “Secrets,” is pretty strong. The free show gets going around 5 pm and it’s for all ages.
Downstairs at White Oak Music Hall, you can get your metal fix when Helstar brings their heavy metal back to the city where they formed. These guys have been going since the early ’80s. They’ve kind of done a ton of big labels, and the latest of their thirteen releases, Vampiro, is their best so far. They’ll have the classic metal of Sanctus Bellum on as direct support, while Mastema will go on beforehand. Krullur will open up the all-ages show with doors at 6 pm and tickets between $12 and $17.
Queen + Adam Lambert, Photo: CAA
Toyota Center will host the classic rock of Queen+Adam Lambert. Lambert taking the reigns as singer for the classic rock icons feels like a no brainer if you’re a fan. All of your favorites like “Don’t Stop Me Now,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “We Will Rock You” and “Another One Bites The Dust” will get performed. There’s no word of support or openers, but you probably don’t need either for this show. The all-ages evening has doors at 7 pm and tickets between $49.50 and $175.
Over in the studio at Warehouse Live, the celebrated downtempo jazz DJ jams of producer Mark Farina will be on hand to get your feet moving. Farina has gotten well known for his unique style, his crazy live sets, and his back catalog of jams. His last drop was 2013’s Urban Coyotes, but earlier records like Back to the House and To Do are pretty magical as well. LA’s Seven Davis will bring his jazz-infused jams on as direct support, while Houston’s Bobby Blyss will get the all-ages show with doors at 8 pm started, with tickets between $16 and $19.
El Lago, Photo: Daniel Jackson
Satellite Bar will have Houston’s El Lago over to headline a set, I think. They have two different orders, or three if you count the flyer, so I guess depending where you look, this will all change. If it’s El Lago headlining, then I’m sure you’ll be pleased, as the dreamy indie rock four-piece is on the verge of dropping their debut full length. It goes without saying that their live shows are always pretty stellar. The fuzz rock of Austin’s The Hermits will also be on hand, while the insanely great indie rock of Alexalone will open the all-ages show with doors at 8 pm. There’s a free cover for the adults, or a $5 cover for the kids.
The classic Mod rock of the Texas Mod Crushers will be over at Rudyard’s. These guys mix classic mod with punk sensibility that you should see sooner than later. The Genzales will be on as direct support, while Imposterboys will open the 21 & up show with doors at 9 pm and an $8 cover.
Sunday you can swing by White Oak Music Hall upstairs for the indie rock sounds of Waxahatchee. The Alabama-born group, lead by Katie Crutchfield, will be here in support of this year’s Out In The Storm. While I say indie rock, there’s plenty of straight-forward rock on this stellar album that’ll sound amazing live. The lo-fi indie rock of Boston’s Palehound will be on as direct support, while Baltimore’s Outer Spaces will open the all-ages show with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $15 and $19.
Over at Marquee Moon Lounge, Austin’s JT Habersaat will bring his Altercation Comedy to town. Here in support of his latest vinyl release, his funny antics will make you forget the humdrum of the week. Memphis’ Josh Mclane and Austin’s Avery Moore will both be on beforehand, while Houston’s English Matt and crowd favorite Gabe Bravo will kick things off. The 21 & up show has doors at 8 pm and an $8 cover.
Astragal, Photo: Disha Khakheria
On Monday you can swing by White Oak Music Hall upstairs for the indie rock of Denton’s Dome Dwellers. This three-piece is definitely due for a new album, but their 2015 release, Ivory Tower, is definitely catchy and intriguing and full of prog influences in its structuring. The punk-fueled indie rock of Houston three-piece Mockingbird Brother will be on hand as direct support, while the jangly indie rock energy of Astragal will open things up. The all-ages show has doors at 7 pm and it’s free for adults or $5 for the children.
Walter’s will host the alt pop rock of Philadelphia’s Civil Youth. Supporting their latest album, this year’s Conversations, this three-piece is definitely full of hooks. The bluesy sounds of Houston’s Clay Melton will be on as direct support while the proggy alt rock of Vox Vocis will go on prior. The indie pop of Houston’s Vanilla Sugar will open the all-ages show with doors at 8 pm and a $10 cover.
On Tuesday, you could head to Warehouse Live in the ballroom for another edition of the massively popular running show, The Moth. The all-ages true stories, told live this time, will as always should make for a fun time. The doors are at 6:30 pm and tickets are $10 for the seated show.
That’s about all that’s happening this week. No matter what you decide to do, remember that drinking like an adult and staying hydrated are best for everyone around you.