Since debuting at Walter's on Washington last March, Roky Moon & BOLT have seared their billowing glam-rock into the local music scene. Barely three months old, the quintet took Best New Act at the 2009 Houston Press Music Awards, then turned in buzzworthy sets at Free Press Summerfest and November's Westheimer Block Party, and tested their acting mettle in Catastrophic Theatre's recent Daniel Johnston opus Life Is Happy and Sad.
In 2010, the band plans to take things even further with a full-length rock opera that could be Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars for the brand-new decade. Chatter tracked down Mike Hardin, spokesman for elusive front man Roky Moon, for a peek inside BOLT's Velvet Goldmine.
Chatter: "Houston" and "glam-rock" are hardly synonymous. Why do you think BOLT caught on so quickly?
Mike Hardin: I think because it is different and fun. Also, there isn't anybody doing this sort of thing in the area, or really at all, so I think people are turned on by that. I think the live show is obviously where our strengths lie, because it is high-energy and fun. I want it to excite people and get them to boogie.
C: Is there a better glam-rock album than Ziggy Stardust?
MH: I would have to say yes. [T. Rex's] Electric Warrior! I know that is pretty clichéd, but I mean it doesn't get much better than this album as far as glam is concerned. It basically set the bar for a lot of bands.
C: Bowie or [late T. Rex front man Marc] Bolan?
MH: Bowie all the way. I love me some T. Rex, but I think there isn't even a comparison when it comes to songwriting. I don't think anyone can argue that David Bowie, during that time period, was pumping out some of the greatest rock and roll songs of all time.
C: Name one other glam-rocker you think doesn't get enough credit.
MH: Alastair Riddell. Space Waltz. That is all.
C: Describe, as simply as you possibly can, the plot of BOLT's rock opera.
MH: It is basically a sci-fi love story I call "The man who couldn't save the world." I have a soft spot for love stories and also Flash Gordon, so you can see where I am at here. The short of it is that the world is coming to an end because the moon is going to come down and crash into the planet.
C: Finally, name three things Roky Moon can do that Mike Hardin can't.
MH: Boogie, wear shades inside and stay up until 11 a.m. for days in a row plucking guitar strings, sipping whiskey, writing words on a computer and making recordings of himself singing out of tune. Mike Hardin would never do those things — he's much too lazy.
December 27, Scout Bar in Clear Lake hosted 94.5 FM The Buzz's Texas Buzz Music Awards, given to the best alternative and metal bands in Houston and the surrounding area. Rocks Off's favorite teenage speed-metal band, Metavenge, took home the award for Best Metal, while The Last Place You Look took home Best Alternative. Best New Band went to the hooky, engaging The 71's, while Baytown's Saturate came home with Best Band and Best Bassist. Saturate celebrates by hitting the road with Flaw for two months, and plans to release a new album in February. CRAIG HLAVATY
88 E. Crosstimbers
1. Mary J. Blige, Stronger With Each Tear
2. Young Money, We Are Young Money
3. Z-Ro, Relvis Presley
4. Alicia Keys, The Element of Freedom
5. Gucci Mane, The State vs Radric Davis
6. Trey Songz, Ready
7. R.Kelly, Untitled
8. Boss Hogg Outlaws, Keepin' It Gangsta 2K9
9. Swisha House, Independence Day
10. Lady Gaga, The Fame Monster
88.7 FM, www.kuhf.org
Selections from the station's December 29 playlist, 9-12 a.m.
1. Tomaso Albinoni, "Trumpet Sonata In F"
2. Theodor Blumer, "10 Waltzes (Hausmusik)"
3. Franz Josef Haydn, Symphony No. 41 In C
4. Johann Strauss II, "Overture to Die Fledermaus (The Bat)"
5. Johann Sebastian Bach, "Cello Suite No. 6 In D-Flat"
6. Aaron Copland, "Hoe-Down" from Rodeo
7. Franz Lachner, "Ball Suite, Op. 170"
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8. Felix Mendelssohn, 6 Children's Pieces, Op. 72 ("Christmas Pieces")
9. Adolphe Adam, "Overture to If I Were King (Si J'étais Roi)"
10. Ed Henderson, "Milagros de Navidad (Miracles of Christmas)"
(lists compiled by Chris Gray)