The Best Concerts In Houston This Week: KMFDM, Faith No More, Black Kite, etc.
Scout Bar, July 27
It’s close, but KMDFM has done as much as Ministry to shape the sound and image of so-called industrial music, often further augmenting their attack with sharp wit and pointed political commentary. Founded by Sascha Konietzko mid-‘80s Hamburg, KMFDM has long since outpaced their Cold War origins with a succession of droll one-word album titles (Naive, Angst, Blitz, recent EP Salvation) and creative interpretations of their acronym (“kill motherfucking Depeche Mode” is a favorite”), but one thing that hasn’t changed is Konietzko’s commitment to giving KMFDM’s fans the biggest sensory-overload bang for their bucks he can.
The Big Easy, July 27
Give John Egan credit for taking chances. The longtime solo Houston bluesman's 2014 album, Amulet, is in some respects the polar opposite of its 2012 predecessor, Phantoms. Besides bringing in a few side musicians and respected Americana producer R.S. Field (Billy Joe Shaver, Webb Wilder), Egan has expanded his songwriting reach to include Latin-tinged jazz and melancholy pop, showing he's less reliant on his Resonator guitar's unforgiving tone but comfortable keeping the instrument as his anchor. The end result is a softer mood than Phantoms, whose songs sometimes showed visibly bared teeth, but Amulet's overall disquieting feel suggests Egan has done little to ward off the same tormentors who were after him last time.
Faith No More
Bayou Music Center, July 28
Expertly negotiating the crevasses between metal and alternative rock for the better part of two decades and coming up with the massive left-field hit “Epic” in the process, San Francisco’s Faith No More was among the first bands to successfully mingle metal and rap and have been many weirdos’ favorite hard rockers since 1987’s “We Care a Lot” crossed over to college radio. The band’s always combustible mix of personalities finally splintered after 1997’s Album of the Year, but not after delivering some of the most bizarre, satirical and downright thrilling rock music of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Faith No More reunited in 2009 and released comeback LP Sol Invictus this past May, but is only now making its way back to Houston; bassist and founding member Billy Gould tells us why elsewhere today.
Scout Bar, July 28
Breathe Carolina is a different band after the departure of co-founder Kyle Even, whose guttural croak put the “scream” in screamo for the Warped Tour veterans. His leaving cleared the way for David Schmitt to take control of the Denver-based group — which debuted with 2008’s Garageband-recorded It’s Not Classy, It’s Classic — to make quite a few adjustments to their sound on last year’s Savages. Although some critics thought Schmitt and his bandmates were a little too scattered on that album, they’ve bounced back impressively with “Anywhere But Home,” a new single that doubles down on the group’s EDM content. Their collaborator on the single, L.A. progressive-house DJ/producer APEK, is now one of Breathe Carolina’s special guests on this tour. Also with Feenixpawl.
The Nightingale Room, July 30
James Templeton, a member of fearless Houston post-rockers By the End of Tonight and the auteur behind the even more outre LIMB, has long been one of Houston’s most adventurous musicians, but his latest project Black Kite inches ever so slightly closer to the mainstream. Teaming up with soul-scorching vocalist Vicki Lynn and electronica producer birdmagic, Black Kite’s music is disquieting and unpredictable, but can also be fragile and totally mesmerizing. Thursday they perform at the Nightingale’s Thursday free-concert series with gifted rapper and recent Houston transplant Jawwaad and a band that requires some very cautious Internet-searching, Black Fetish.
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