Mussorgsky or Mr. Bungle? The Nutcracker or The Number of the Beast? Austin's Invincible Czars can provide whatever your band-geek heart desires. The group combines folk, classical, klezmer, rock, prog, metal and punk into a bizarre style that is less fusion than mad jumble, aggressively pursuing new opportunities for musical jokes. The band's Halloween show, for example, rearranged each song from Iron Maiden's iconic album in a different genre: lounge, disco, mariachi, country, polka, Latin and "mystery." Last year they did a rock version of A Night on Bald Mountain. The Czars' music is not the easiest for dancing or rocking out, and since the 2005 album Gods of Convenience, their original material seems to have taken a back seat to these Weird Al-meets-Charles Ives cover projects. But if your cup of Earl Grey is a rousing chorus of "Enter the TIE Fighters," here's your chance to indulge your inner nerd. Take note: This is the Czars' last anything-goes Houston performance for at least two months, but they'll be back to do The Nutcracker at KUHF and the Houston Ballet's Christmas-tree lighting.
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