The 10 Best Alternatives to Free Press Summer Fest
Photo by Mike Seely/Courtesy of Thrill Jockey
Trans Am Rudyard's, May 30
Traditionally identified with other "post-rock" bands like Tortoise (an early champion) and Bastro, Trans Am have outlived most of their onetime peers, not to mention the curious indie subgenre's brief late-'90s moment in the wider spotlight. It was pretty brief.
Though the trio began in the Washington, D.C. suburbs, they were never especially close to the Dischord-dominated post-hardcore/pre-emo scene nearby, and 1996's self-titled debut was actually a cheeky piss-take of bloated '70s arena-rock bands like Foreigner. However, starting with next album Surrender to the Night, Trans Am revealed their true purpose: reimagining the work of New Wave-era electronic bands like Can and New Order to the nth degree, a mission going strong even today on aptly titled tenth album Vol. X. With Vacation Eyes and Wicked Poseur. CHRIS GRAY
Adventure Club Stereo Live, May 31
If you'd rather skip Summer Fest for cooler digs, why not the official FSPSF afterparty at Stereo Live?Canadian EDM duo Adventure Club, known for their signature screeching female vocals layered over heavy bass drops and other crazy electronic sounds, will keep the party going until your dirt-and-sweat-caked rear end finally passes out at 4 a.m. Getting up to do it all again Sunday morning is entirely up to you. ANGELICA LEICHT
Vintage Trouble Continental Club, June 1
This fire-breathing L.A. quartet asks for and gives no quarter, bringing an almost MC5-like level of intensity to the gutbucket soul music of the classic Stax catalogue thanks to singer/force of nature Ty Taylor; imagine Living Colour's Corey Glover clad in a three-piece suit and testifying like a Sunday-morning Baptist preacher.
Since their one and only album, The Bomb Shelter Sessions, dropped in early 2012, Vintage Trouble has been barnstorming music festivals all over the globe (including both ACL and FPSF last year and the grandaddy of them all, the UK's Glastonbury), milking Bomb Shelter for all it's worth. Most recently, they released a new video for the Lenny-Kravitz-gone-berserk track "Run Like a River." CHRIS GRAY
SEVEN MORE SHOWS WORTH CHECKING OUT
Aves Wing: One of our favorite new(ish) local bands brings their bewitching sounds to the Bronze Peacock Room. (House of Blues, May 30)
Cowboy Mouth: Over in the big room, light it on fire with the beloved New Orleans rockers. (House of Blues, May 30)
Whitey Morgan & the 78's: Both kinds of music, country and western, from Duck Dynasty lookalike Morgan and his Michigan-based outlaws. (Firehouse Saloon, May 30)
Butch Hancock, Jimmie Dale Gilmore: Two-thirds of the Flatlanders are still two of the greatest singer-songwriters in Americana history. (McGonigel's Mucky Duck, May 31, 7 & 9:30 p.m.)
Majic 102.1 Under the Stars: All aboard the love train, the O'Jays headline this evening of groove-tastic R&B with ex-Gap Band singer "Uncle" Charlie Wilson and Ms. Erykah Badu her own self. (Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, May 31)
24th Anniversary Party: Veteran troubador Greg Trooper helps Houston's favorite Irish listening room salute one year shy of a quarter-century. Slainte! (McGonigel's Mucky Duck, June 1)
Jabo: "Texas Prince of Zydeco" and his Southside Playboys chase away those Sunday-night blues. (The Big Easy, June 1)
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