Molly Flogs Houston

Flogging Molly makes the walls sweat at the House of Blues.

I wish I were Irish, and so does half of Houston, apparently, judging by the February 17 sold-out Flogging Molly concert at the House of Blues.

Flogging Molly, L.A.'s seven-person Celtic punk band, blend traditional Celtic, Irish and folk with ridiculously loud and boisterous punk music to create a sound that is super charged with energy, and last night was no anomaly. When they hit the stage, they were definitely loud.

Immediately breaking into fan favorites like "Paddy's Lament" and "Drunken Lullabies," Molly definitely knew what their fans were looking for and gave it to them by the fistful.

Dave King (left) and Flogging Molly kept House of Blues' security team hopping during the band's recent Houston stop.
Angelica Leicht
Dave King (left) and Flogging Molly kept House of Blues' security team hopping during the band's recent Houston stop.
Sawyer Park
Sawyer Park

For almost two hours, Molly ran through their hits, including some numbers that hadn't been touched for many years, while fans crowd-surfed and attempted to Celtic-dance while simultaneously bouncing en masse. To be honest, Houston, it might be time for some lessons. I think it involves a little more than kicking your legs out wildly.

The audience fed hard off the energy from the band; beer showers and projectile objects made the concert feel at points as if I were on a Viking ship, the sea of people moving like waves as they bobbed along with "Float" and "The Lightning Storm."

Y'all pillaged and plundered that shit, Houston. I've never seen so many people get thrown out of a venue. The security at HOB was busy as hell, pushing past me at rapid speed to remove those naughty rule-breakers. I'm guessing it was because we all tried to keep up with the Irish drinking that should go along with tracks like these. Most of us didn't succeed.
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Only in Houston

Party's Over
Sawyer Park Closes Its Doors After Four Years.

Craig Hlavaty

Almost from the beginning, Washington Avenue sports bar Sawyer Park was embattled. There were the allegations of racial profiling at the door; a shooting nearby in 2011; the malleable dress codes; its "doucheoisie" clientele; the partial blinding of an employee; and the people who still missed its former life as the gluttonous Pig Stand.

Last week, everyone finally got the message that it was closed after four years of business, with a sign out front thanking patrons for their years of business. An outgoing message on the club's answering machine thanked customers for the memories. The bar's closure is just another nail in the coffin for this era of Washington Avenue. Closures and changes to bars have been rampant up and down the street.

The bar on the corner of Sawyer and Washington, just a block away from Beaver's, had a beautiful view of downtown — that is, if you were lucky enough to pass inspection at the front door. That was enough to drive away many drinkers, but of course not all. It was still a hot spot, but the crowds looked sparser on some nights. Maybe it had lost its flavor, or the regulars had moved on to and back to Midtown and Upper Kirby for their freaky weekends.

The club's Twitter page has been inactive since late 2010, and its Facebook page is rather dormant. There were a host of "turnt up" party pics from the NBA All-Star Weekend festivities on Instagram and Twitter, so at least the ol' salty girl went out with a bang.
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Classic Rock Corner

Flashed Back
Robertson Stadium's Rock and Roll Past Explored.

Nathan Smith

After years of dreaming, planning and even a little begging, the University of Houston broke ground on a new on-campus football stadium this month. It's a pretty darn exciting development for the Cougars that marks the beginning of a new era of UH athletics.

The new construction also meant the end of Robertson Stadium, the well-worn art-deco facility that stood at the corner of Scott and Elgin for more than 60 years. The stadium's demolition last December was a loss for Houston history buffs. The field played host to a rich part of the city's sporting legacy. Sports weren't the stadium's only draw, however.

Robertson was also the site of some big, righteous concerts back in the stadium-rock era, a history long forgotten by most Houstonians. Bands too big for the Sam Houston Coliseum but not quite huge enough for the Astrodome packed out the place in the '70s and early '80s, with acts as eclectic as Black Sabbath and the Beach Boys gracing its stage over the years.

Bruce Kessler, the former Pace Concerts photographer who has archived a veritable treasure trove of old concert photos at RockinHouston.com, shot Pink Floyd's 1977 gig at the stadium on their "In the Flesh Tour," the dehumanizing trek that inspired much of Roger Waters's bitter outpouring on The Wall.

"I do have specific memories of most of the shows that I shot there, especially Pink Floyd in 1977, as it was raining cats and dogs," Kessler said. "The stage was high, and it was one heck of a challenge to shoot upwards while also holding an umbrella to keep the rain off the lens. That is why I have so few pictures."

Many of Pink Floyd's contemporaries enjoyed much sunnier (and no doubt hotter) weather over the years, of course. Alice Cooper played Robertson Stadium as part of KILT-FM's Houston Rocks concert on July 13, 1980, along with Black Sabbath, Blue Öyster Cult and others. The Allman Brothers were a massive draw back in 1974, fresh off the success of "Ramblin' Man" and "Jessica." Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's epic 1974 tour featured one of the largest and most powerful portable sound systems of the era.
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