7:30 p.m. Thursday, December 30, at House of Blues, 1204 Caroline, 888-402-5837 or www.hob.com/houston.
When the alternative wrecking ball composed mostly of grunge, flannel and teen angst came to level the palace of hair metal and dance-pop that the '80s had built, Soul Asylum were right there at the demolition site with bleeding-heart lyrics and an unkempt look that defined a certain moment of '90s rock. Grave Dancers Union (1992) went triple platinum on the strength of singles like "Black Gold" and "Runaway Train," and while whatever sharp edges were still left on the band's sound have been sanded down with time — they're not currently rewriting "Somebody to Shove" — the earnestness in Dave Pirner's voice hasn't flagged over the years. The band's calling card is still big choruses highlighting big issues, and the focus has earned them longtime followers who have been salivating over the chance to catch them in a relatively intimate setting such as House of Blues. Whether you show up listening for old hits or new material, you'll be sure to get what you came for.