The 10 Best Concerts in Houston This Weekend: Skatestock III, Grindfest 2014, Brand New, etc.
Photo by Anna O'Connor/Plowboy Records
Cheetah Chrome Fitzgerald's, October 17
Alongside fellow contenders like Johnny Ramone, Cheetah Chrome became one of the titanic guitarists of CBGB-era American punk. His origins, though, erupted a few years earlier in down-and-out Cleveland, where he helped propel two groundbreaking units there: Rocket from the Tombs and the Dead Boys, who together fomented a warped sonic renaissance with tunes like "Sonic Reducer."
As his new memoir A Dead Boy's Tale: From The Front Lines of Punk Rock recounts, street smarts are a crucial part of Chrome's DNA. Hence, his swaggering new album, Solo (incredibly, his first-ever full-length solo outing), evokes a gritty spirit of survival without hauling along tons of sentimentality. With the Drunks, the Guillotines and Born Liars; see our interview from Thursday. DAVID ENSMINGER
Grindfest 2014 Acadia Bar & Grill, October 18
There aren't too many bigger backers of Houston-area metal out there than Tommy D. Kat and his Grind Radio Show. In October, he'll be broadcasting live all day (like, all damn day) from Acadia Bar, where a punishing lineup of local fiends will bash away indoors and out until the mighty deadhorse takes the stage to cap off the whole shebang. Also along for the ride will be Pasadena Napalm Division, the fast 'n crunchy supergroup featuring members of deadhorse and D.R.I. front man Kurt Brecht. Try not to mosh yourself unconscious before they hit the stage. Starts at 12 p.m. NATHAN SMITH
ZiegenBock Music Festival Sam Houston Race Park, October 18
In all likelihood there would be no country music without beer, a relationship that goes back even further than Hank Williams Sr. shedding tears into his. In Houston-area festival terms, ZiegenBock's annual shitkicker's shindig is practically as old, entering its 12th lap around Sam Houston Race Park this Saturday. Live Nation always tries to balance ZB's three stages between whoever Nashville is pitching and the rowdier Lone Star stuff, and this year's scales tip heavily towards the home team; any afternoon dominated by Kevin Fowler, Pat Green, the Casey Donahew Band, Roger Creager and Bart Crow means some serious yell practice is ahead.
Answering back from Music Row is neo-traditionalist Josh Turner of "Long Back Train" fame, plus a couple of fresh-faced talents -- one a young lady (Cam) and one a duo (Dan + Shay) -- who could well be walking into the proverbial lion's den. The plentiful undercard offers several acts from our neck of the woods worth paying attention to as well, among them Justin Van Sant, Rosehill and Charles Peters & the 10 Percent. Gates at 12:30 p.m. CHRIS GRAY
Houston's Best Halloween Bash The Silo (4601 Clinton), October 18
There's no way to really prove Saturday's fiesta -- boasting 20-plus Houston acts, plus a flotilla of food trucks and locally engineered craft beers, decorations by Halloween Express and a $500 costume contest -- is "Houston's Best Halloween Bash," but then again, there's no way to really prove that it isn't, either. Because it certainly looks like it could be. Organizer Bryant Gutierrez, who has helped promote a number of UH-related events under his Happy Bryant banner, says his objective is to "create and promote a prominent music scene here in Houston."
Judging by Saturday's lineup, he's off to a terrific start. Acts include American Fangs, We Were Wolves, Bang Bangz, BLSHS, FLCON FCKER, Some Nerve, Only Beast!, the Trimms, Fox & Cats, and more at this link, plus a midnight afterparty featuring MKE and Gio Chamba. Doors to "The Silo" (our 2013 Best of Houston winner for Best Alternative Venue) open at 1 p.m., but don't wait until day of show to get tickets, because they're only $10 in advance. We know -- we could hardly believe it either. CHRIS GRAY
Skatestock III Lee & Joe Jamail Skatepark, October 18
Still a somewhat unsung gem on Houston's crowded festival calendar, Skatestock revels in the confluence of skateboarding, urban visual art and unruly guitar music in the unlikely location of a municipally-sanctioned park built expressly to house what was once an outlaw culture. In only its third year, Skatestock is now a destination for top skaters and artists alike, a list that this year includes Steve Alba, Tony Alva, Peggy Oki and Steve Olsen (skate), and Vizie, Dmote and Mast One (art).
Supplying the tunes, meanwhile, are a handful of Houston's most intimidating punk and metal bands: doom lords Venomous Maximus, poised to strike in early 2015 with new album Firewalker; the seldom-seen Something Fierce, usually off burning up the highways and byways; the always-unpredictable Anarchitex; and no-frills metal outfit Supergrave. Proceeds benefit the Morgan Moss Foundation, a nonprofit that channels photography supplies to Texas high schools in honor of its namesake, the talented artist, photographer and passionate skater who was tragically killed in a 2011 auto accident. Gates at 1 p.m. CHRIS GRAY
More shows on the next page.
Brand New Bayou Music Center, October 18
Come Saturday, Bayou Music Center's walls will reverberate with the voices of fans singing along with Brand New, flagship band of a kind of modern rock that alternates visceral punk screaming with loosely coiled guitar passages of seductive beauty. The Long Island quartet's lack of new material since 2009 LP Daisy, which showed how big their fan base had grown by bowing at No. 6 on the Billboard 200, should be no deterrent to the numbers that turn out to see them.
Five years is a long time to rehearse some lyrics, after all, and within a certain segment of the U.S. population (mostly mid-twenties/early-thirties), Brand New is as beloved as the Beatles. That is not an exaggeration. With Cymbals Eat Guitars and Foxing. CHRIS GRAY
Trudy Lynn & Steve Krase Shakespeare Pub, October 18
It's difficult to look up a factoid like the last time two artists with Top 10 albums on the Billboard blues chart played the same gig, but it's definitely happening right here in Houston Saturday. After Miss Trudy Lynn reached No. 1 with Royal Oak Blues Cafe just after Labor Day, she now has company in none other than Royal Oak collaborator Steve Krase.
This week Royal Oak is holding strong at No .5, just behind some of the biggest names in blues (Joe Bonnamassa, Gary Clark Jr., the late Johnny Winter) and one spot ahead of Krase, who blows a mean harp on the hard-charging Buckle Up. Definitely a Saturday night to shout about. CHRIS GRAY
Photo by Marco Torres
Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias Toyota Center, October 19
Security guards hate Enrique Iglesias. In an arena full of hyper-sexual fans, all it takes is the slightest of suggestions to push them over the top... and out of their seats, over the barriers, and onto the stage. Iglesias revels in the chaos he incites at each show, while fans not only enjoy an exciting musical experience, but also a feeling that the Spanish heartthrob is channeling his love and lust directly to them. When combined with the superpowers of Miami's own Pitbull, this show turns into a spectacle usually reserved for New Year's Eve or Mardi Gras. MARCO TORRES
TWO MORE SHOWS YOU SHOULD CONSIDER By Chris Gray
Buckcherry: Sleazy fun with stripper-loving L.A. rockers. With Vegas' Otherwise and H-town's American Fangs and We Were Wolves. Free show! (Warehouse Live, October 17)
Houston Musicians Under Cover: Locals go in disguise for a great cause: the Jeff Davis High School music program. Starring Bang Bangz as Gorillaz, thelastplaceyoulook as Genesis, ISHI as Depeche Mode, duneTX as Green Day, Grand Old Grizzly as Tom Petty, Children of Pop as Madonna and more. (Fitzgerald's, October 18)
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