Known to those in the biz as "amateur night," New Year's Eve is nonetheless a near-guaranteed full house for bands and clubs, and a boon to local music fans — often with free champagne. Throw in the occasional ringer or two, and you've got a party no matter where you wind up. Such as: Local moptops the Fab 5 twist and shout at the Stafford Center's dinner-and-dancing soiree...the Allen Oldies Band and El Orbits double up on the good times at the Continental Club's no-cover bash...House of Blues welcomes "Jet Black and Jealous" Denton boys the Eli Young Band, and a bodacious '80s dance party with the awesomely named Thunderpants downstairs...Gritty Austin bluesman Guy Forsyth twin-bills at Dan Electro's with local scamps the Sideshow Tramps...The Hunger turns back the clock to 1992 at Scout Bar with Melovine, Another Day and The Southern Kill...Blaggards sends off 2008 in a tide of Guinness at Brian O'Neill's Traditional Irish Pub...It's Zeppelin vs. Floyd at Fitzgerald's courtesy of local tribute bands Black Dog and Us & Them; sharp-tongued Austin roots-rockers Mike Dubose & the Dissidents saddle up downstairs...Rudyard's promises a "New Year's Bash" with performers including Tody Castillo, and no doubt a few cars still in the parking lot Thursday morning. Should old acquaintance be forgot, do still remember to drive safe.
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