The Five Best Concerts in Houston This Week: ICP, Eagles, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Charli XCX, etc.
Juggalos at Warehouse Live in 2011
Photo by Marc Brubaker
Insane Clown Posse Warehouse Live, October 13
2014 has been a quiet year in Juggalo Nation, or at least the Uncle Sam hasn't issued any new reports labeling their fans one step above common criminals; that we know of, anyway. Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope did lose a lawsuit against both the Justice Department and the FBI back in July, one that stemmed from the G-men's 2011 classification of Juggalos as "a loosely organized hybrid gang."
Come on...it's just a couple of plus-sized dudes rapping about psychopaths and budget-priced soda pop, right? If you can get past the Faygo baths and incessant titty talk, the Juggalo overlords actually espouse a message of tolerance and solidarity for a class of people normally mocked, ridiculed or otherwise just ignored in American society. Fucking magnets...how do they work? CHRIS GRAY
The Eagles Toyota Center, October 14
Arguably the most successful American rock band of all time, the Eagles have lost little of their drawing power for only having released one all-original album since 1980. Of course that one, 2007's The Long Hard Road Out of Eden, sold some 7 million copies domestically, forever proving that Don Henley, Glenn Frey, the always scene-stealing Joe Walsh and their sometimes-squabbing bandmates can do whatever the hell they please at this point.
As dissected in filmmaker Alison Ellwood's excellent two-part 2013 documentary History of the Eagles, the band has exerted an overwhelming influence not only on the past two or three generations of rock and country music, but also on a certain lifestyle that prizes a peaceful, easy feeling above all else. This is the second Houston stop (after February) of the box-office bonanza known as the "History of the Eagles Tour." CHRIS GRAY
Rodrigo y Gabriela Bayou Music Center, October 15
Blending an insatiable musical curiosity with dazzling instrumental technique, the flamenco-rooted Rodrigo y Gabriela have given "world music" a hip 21-century makeover that has allowed that ambiguous, somewhat dismissive term to shed some of its pledge-dive connotations. The duo's origins stretch from the harrowing metal clubs of their native Mexico City to a hitch in Dublin, where they earned the patronage of folkie Damien Rice; collaborating on the score of Pirates of the Caribbean installment On Stranger Tides; and a trip to Cuba that resulted in the 2012 live album Area 52. Their first studio album in five years, this spring's 9 Dead Alive, was inspired by historical figures including Harriet Tubman, Nobel-winning poet Gabriela Mistral and Queen Eleanor of Aquitane. CHRIS GRAY
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Photo by David McLister/All Eyes Media
Rodney Crowell Discovery Green, October 16
Turning a youthful 64 back in August, Rodney Crowell is on a creative roll thanks to 2013's Grammy-winning Emmylou Harris collaboration Old Yellow Moon and this year's Tarpaper Sky, which re-teams him with most of his Diamonds & Dirt band for a deeply personal album full of wisdom, reflection and Gulf Coast seasoning. As such, it's a close companion to two previous career highlights: 2001 "comeback" album The Houston Kid, which retrenched the onetime Nashville star as an Americana elder (which he's been ever since) and 2011 memoir Chinaberry Sidewalks, where Crowell proved he's as fine an author as he is a songwriter. With Grand Old Grizzly; free show. CHRIS GRAY
Photo by Bella Howard/Atlantic Records
Charli XCX Fitzgerald's, October 16
UK-born Charli XCX is gaining traction as a solo artist, as seen with her recent performance on the red carpet at the MTV VMAs. Her initial propulsion in popularity came from collaborating with other artists (Icona Pop's "I Love It" and Iggy Azalea's "Fancy"), but the Brit's debut single, "Boom Clap," is shooting up the charts, and has her on the verge of becoming a big-time pop star. This may be your only chance to see her at a small venue before Britain's next musical import moves on to bigger and better things. With Elliphant and Femme. JACK GORMAN
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