The Best Concerts in Houston This Weekend
Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears Cactus Music, August 30
It can't be a coincidence that the recent vinyl revival and the rise of young throwback soul bands like Austin's Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears have happened at the same time, but it sure works out well Friday night. To promote the band's brand-new fifth album, Electric Slave (out next Tuesday), the Honeybears are commandeering Cactus as part of their "Electric Texas Takeover," a lightning-quick Labor Day Weekend jaunt to record stores in Houston, Dallas and Austin; it promises to be their only performance in the area for quite a while. An advance purchase of Slave is the only way to secure the wristband required for entry Friday, so come early -- this one's gonna be crowded. CHRIS GRAY
Buddy Guy, Jimmie Vaughn Arena Theatre, August 30
These two veteran blues guitarists and singers are a sight different from one another, but don't be surprised to see them together onstage Friday, with neither man giving much in the way of ground.
About as cool a customer as they come, Vaughan will be making his first appearance on a Houston stage since he had a heart attack in January, but if he's back out on the road, you can bet he hasn't lost a step. (His crack Tilt-a-Whirl Band won't let him.)
Tour partner Buddy Guy is hoping for a banner year behind the brand-new Rhythm and Blues, a guest-heavy recent Billboard No. 1 Blues Album where he's not shy about either patting himself on the back or flashing the skills that still pay the bills. CHRIS GRAY
Steely Dan Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, August 30
For a band that once famously rejected live gigging in favor of holing up in studios to create meticulously crafted records, Steely Dan has surprisingly become late-career road dogs. On "Think Fast," SD's fifth tour this decade alone, Donald Fagen, Walter Becker and their crack band will plow — smoothly, of course — through their '70s catalogue, in addition to more recent material like 2003's Everything Must Go and selections from solo material such as Fagen's Morph the Cat and Becker's new Circus Money. Previous Houston stops have been playing to the vast lawn at the Woodlands, and that's where they'll be landing again for you to hear Steely's crisp sax blows, tasty guitar licks and Fagen's wry, slightly pervy vocals. BOB RUGGIERO
More concert porn continues on the next page.
Backstreet Boys, DJ Pauly D Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, August 31
As the best-selling boy band in history, the Backstreet Boys are not only jumping on the '90s nostalgia bandwagon but also hitting the recording studio to freshen up their sound with some tracks that will bring them into the 2010s. But their summer tour will surely throw in at least a few old favorites, since it would hardly be a Backstreet Boys concert without "Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)." They've invited Jersey Shore playa Pauly D along to play resident DJ on the tour, so watch for a shortage of hair gel in every city the slickly suited caravan passes through. ANGELICA LEICHT
Spain Colored Orange Continental Club, August 31
Usually when a band resurfaces after a long layoff, they've been working up new tunes or more personal matters are afoot. We know the latter is the case for Spain Colored Orange, whose pianist/vocalist, Gilbert Alfaro, is a relatively recent husband and dad (congrats), so we hope the trumpet-guided psychedelic pop crew has a new tune or two in the bargain for its first local gig in many moons. (We hope they bring the lasers back, too.) Joining SCO are purveyors of two of the better local albums of 2013, Astrofunk groovers the Journey Agents and Bazooka launchers Jealous Creatures, who alongside slam-blues duo Kenny the Spider make a pretty square four-sided local bill. CHRIS GRAY
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