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  • Article

    Travis - The Invisible Band (Epic/Sony)

    The title The Invisible Band is a jest, rest assured. Travis's last album, The Man Who, sold more than three million copies, which was enough to inspire Sony to do market research in order to squeeze more out of its latest darling. Research finishe...

    by Tim Murrah on July 26, 2001
  • Article

    Don Wilkerson - The Complete Blue Note Sessions (Blue Note)

    Don Wilkerson was a Texas Tenor in the tradition of Illinois Jacquet and Arnett Cobb. Though he never quite gained their level of name recognition, Wilkerson was heard unwittingly by millions on great R&B records in the '50s. The Moreauville, Louisi...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on July 26, 2001
  • Article

    Playbill - The Cult

    Even though Johnny Rotten was brutally candid about the Sex Pistols' reunion tour in 1996, they were vilified in many circles for making such a blatant money grab. It was seen as the ultimate sellout, and to top it all, the shows weren't that great, ...

    by Greg Barr on July 26, 2001
  • Article

    Playbill - The Go-Go's

    Christ, it's taken long enough to get this record out -- 17 years to be exact! So long that the five women in America's quintessential girl group are now in their mid- forties and, until now, had released just as many best-of compilations as studio r...

    by Bob Ruggiero on July 26, 2001
  • Article

    Minibill - Flaco Jimenez

    When Ry Cooder was hipped to Flaco Jimenez back in the mid-'70s, Jimenez probably never foresaw the international fame that was to come. Now look at what the man known in English as "The Nail" or "Skinny One" has done: He's won five Grammys. He's ins...

    by John Nova Lomax on July 26, 2001
  • Article

    Renewable Energy - Houston's ever-evolving Soular Slide looks for its place in the sun

    It's an unlikely venue for the band's groove/funk sounds and doesn't exactly attract the usual crowd, but Soular Slide has no regrets about a recent Saturday night at the Time Out #1 on Fuqua. After all, the management is pretty cool, they pay well, ...

    by Bob Ruggiero on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Lucky Star - The brass ring fell in Kirk Whalum's lap. He's kept it in his pocket ever since.

    As a teenager living in Memphis during the '70s, saxophonist Kirk Whalum became enamored with the work of two other reedmen: Wilton Felder and Ronnie Laws. Two of Houston's favorite sons, Felder and Laws were trailblazing a new form of soulful R&B/fu...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Aim to Please - Luther and his Healers know the cure for what ails most local bands

    For Luther and the Healers, every show can be radically different from the last. This isn't because of inconsistencies with sound or the band's lineup. The biggest switch from night to night is the venue, which has ranged from sports bars to swanky d...

    by Mike Emery on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Racket - The Last Concert Cafe has glimpses from its unique history

    There has always been a little intrigue in a trip to the Last Concert Cafe. Actually, in the early days of the joint, it was more than a sensation. The famed locked red door remains so now only for tradition's sake, but back in the day it was bolted ...

    by John Nova Lomax on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Treacherous Waters - Club Current runs aground in the Galleria mainstream

    "I started feeling picked on, okay?" This is what John Finlay remembers most about briefly running a club in the Galleria area. After only three months of operation, his late-night/after-hours combo, the Current Nightclub/Citrus Room (1800 Post Oak)...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Rick Trevio - Mi Son (Vanguard)

    In the early 1990s, a young Austin-born Texas A&M student and part-time country singer named Rick Trevio got the break of which every would-be Nashville darling dreams: discovery, major-label deal, stardom. By the tender age of 25, he had already sc...

    by Roger Wood on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Sly Letter - These Autumn Skies (Self-released)

    From the get-go, there's something just not right with this record. The lead-in guitar jangle on "Better That Way" seems derived from 10,000 Maniacs. That's no criminal offense, but once the drab vocals begin spewing cryptic, introspective goo, it's...

    by Mike Emery on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Playbill - Mike Doughty

    "A stark musical setting" is how Mike Doughty describes the framework of his solo career, launched less than a year after the breakup of his band Soul Coughing. Since then, he has already logged three tours, all acoustic, all by himself. Doughty has ...

    by Eric A.T. Dieckman on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Playbill - Two Man Advantage

    Considering how splintered the rock biz has become in the past ten years, and particularly the punk genre, it was only a matter of time before Two Man Advantage came along. Indeed, micro-mini niches are de rigueur if you're a punk rocker in 2001. Hai...

    by Greg Barr on July 19, 2001
  • Article

    Joydrop - Houston Press Music Awards' featured act

    Seen by the suits at her U.S. label as Canada's answer to Gwen Stefani, Joydrop's Tara Slone, the part-time TV action star and practicing Buddhist, is vying to become MTV's latest pop-rock hottie. Yes, indeed, Tommy "I'm No Has-been" Lee plays Slone'...

    by Greg Barr on July 12, 2001
  • Article

    Sacred Blues - Blues 2 Joy writes a new testament for the devil's music

    Up on the stage, the lead guitarist snaps off a down and dirty blues riff on a Les Paul, his nimble fingers dancing up and down the fretboard. A drummer and bassist pound out a steady rhythm that supports two more smoking guitars and a screeching har...

    by Bob Ruggiero on July 12, 2001
  • Article

    Life Begins at 41 - Early success was almost the end of Ray Wylie Hubbard

    The liner notes for Eternal and Lowdown, Ray Wylie Hubbard's new record, open thusly: "If F. Scott Fitzgerald had known Ray Wylie Hubbard, there's no way Fitzgerald would ever have conceived that notion about American lives having no second act, much...

    by Melanie Haupt on July 12, 2001
  • Article

    Revenge of the Nerds - Rainer Maria's twin solitudes protect and touch and greet each other

    Caithlin De Marrais is afraid she sounds like a dork. "You know how MTV has those shows that have little snippets of other music in it?" she sheepishly asks on the phone from her home in Connecticut. "Just recently, a song from our new album was on d...

    by Mikael Wood on July 12, 2001
  • Article

    Racket - Not all pirates are bad

    Montrose Radio's backers thought of themselves as champions of liberty, but the FCC called them pirates. They were both right. Truth is, the pirates of the high seas have always gotten a bad rap. Though there were some bad apples among them, so were...

    by John Nova Lomax on July 12, 2001
  • Article

    Toni Price - Midnight Pumpkin (Antone's)

    Through four albums, Austin's Toni Price has meandered through a myriad of twists and turns -- and encountered the occasional dead end -- while dabbling with various styles of American roots music. She's sashayed through fields of bluegrass, lighted ...

    by Greg Barr on July 12, 2001
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