"A House Is a Home," Ben & Ellen Harper Grammy winner Ben Harper teams up with his mother, Ellen, for Childhood Home, which releases this week. This is the first single from the album. Their tender harmonies and reflections here are like flipping through a family photo album, reminding us of every t ... More >>
Bastille House of Blues April 23, 2014 Bastille could very well be the next Coldplay, OneRepublic or Ed Sheeran. The London-based quartet possesses all of the necessary characteristics and already has the world's collective ear, but first they need to choose a direction. Right now, their sound is ... More >>
A new song seeking to build support for the Astrodome referendum may do just the opposite.
Recently I addressed a subject close to my heart: bands I wish everybody would stop talking about for even five minutes. I even liked some of those bands, but I just can't stand to listen to them anymore because of overexposure. Thanks, social media! Well folks, it's time for another intervention, ... More >>
This past weekend, I was honored to cover the Super Bowl XLVII festivities and game in New Orleans for the Houston Press and local TV outlet KIAH (Channel 39). Great fun, if not for locals in NOLA, who were ravaged by drunken football fanatics puking onto their 49ers and Ravens jerseys in the street ... More >>
Last week we took a look at some of the most holiday spirit-dampeningly awful songs ever recorded. We aren't quite done ruining your holiday spirit just yet however, as this week we have compiled ten of the saddest holiday cover songs ever recorded. Rewind: The 10 Worst Holiday Cover Songs Ever ... More >>
How awesome was that cool front that blew through this past Saturday? Finally, your average Houston afternoon has gone from being a blast furnace to mildly toasty, while the mornings and evenings have become sublime. Hey, we'll take it. This must be what they call "fall," so it seemed like the perfe ... More >>
July 4 is truly America's national holiday, because it combines two of the country's grandest traditions: Taking the day off work and blowing shit up. Because freedom isn't free, fireworks and other explosives are embedded in America's formative myths and our national character. Also, they're pretty ... More >>
Coldplay Toyota Center June 25, 2012 At the risk of obliterating the last remnants of my punk-rock cred, I guess I never really understood all the Coldplay hate. Chris Martin's Ernest Lee Sincere routine puts a lot of people off, sure, and some (like my neighbor) bailed on them when they started dr ... More >>
"Through their own words they will be exposed/ They've got a sudden case of the Emperor's New Clothes." -- Sinead O'Conor Surely you've heard the story of how a rich and powerful ruler was duped by a con man who pretended to weave magnificent garments visible only to those who weren't stupid, and ... More >>
In a few weeks on April 21, Record Store Day is yet again set to obliterate the wallets of record collectors around the country, and the Flaming Lips will have quite a release for fans on that day. What would you think if I said that they have been recording with none other than Ke$ha, Bon Iver, Nic ... More >>
It was announced this week that British bands Blur, New Order and the Specials will be performing at the closing ceremonies of this year's Summer Olympics, which will be held in London in July and August. All three bands represent three distinct parts of British popular music from past 35 years. We ... More >>
SPOILER ALERTThe best thing about the annual Grammy nominations and awards shows is the clamor of anger that rises up when the mere mention of the event even comes up. Immediately people begin calling it a travesty, trotting out all the people who have been snubbed -- Jethro Tull beats Metall ... More >>
We're obsessed with music videos lately, and have spent almost the whole of the weekend seeking new and brilliant ones in order to feature in our weekly column. We're just so impressed with the capabilities open to modern artists at all strata of stardom, and how brilliant a piece of work can come o ... More >>
Photo By Craig HlavatyColdplay's Chris Martin at the Woodlands in July 2009. Coldplay is bringing their Mylo Xyloto tour to Houston next summer on June 25 at the Toyota Center. The band was last in Houston on July 22, 2009 at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion on the down-slope of the Viva La Vi ... More >>
There's been a furor brewing among people who love streaming music services like Spotify and Rdio over bands like Coldplay denying licensing to those services for new releases. Older albums are available, but bands have essentially delayed the release to streaming services. That was all well ... More >>
Marco TorresBy the end of the first night of this year's Austin City Limits, Kanye West had gone over his allotted set time by 15 minutes, turning in one of the most un-rap, rap shows, injecting a Bjork and Talking Heads stage-commanding sensibility into a collection of champion singles. It w ... More >>
Jim BrickerColdplay: Also with the pretty lights.A Zilker field. As Friday's shadows lengthened, a young woman - tall, pale, boots - approached Rocks Off. "Are you going to Pretty Lights?" "I don't think so." "Why not?" "I don't know." "Do you know where I can get some Molly?" "Uhhh... ... More >>
NASA/Hair BallsNo more cool pictures like this for a long time :(If you're an astronaut, you recently might have awoken you from a sound night's rest on the space shuttle to the sounds of U2, Beyonce, Electric Light Orchestra, Aaron Copeland, or even some old Coldplay. On those more unlucky d ... More >>
What's with all the damn Coldplay?NASA, always on the lookout for good publicity, has made a cottage industry out of the wake-up music it uses to rouse crews orbiting the earth. They recruit artists to record messages that are played after the song, because the first thing you want to hear ... More >>
Stevie Wonder on FacebookStevie Wonder: Even My Morning Jacket will be watching.This morning, the organizers of the Austin City Limits Music Festival announced the schedule for the September 16-18 Zilker Park throwdown. We all knew there would be some tough choices, but Rocks Off found that w ... More >>
So, we listened to Coldplay's new single, "Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall" for the first time and, try as we might, we just can't hate it. Now, it's not great. One could argue that it only barely crosses the line into "good" territory. It sounds like Chris Martin locked himself in a room and l ... More >>
Craig HlavatyColdplay at The Woodlands, July 2009Summer is creeping in, which means the fall concert calendars are filling up fast, and we should know which Austin City Limits Music Festival artists will book side dates in our area sooner rather than later. The standard disclaimer: Rocks Off ... More >>
Marc BrubakerGoin' back to Zilker: Arcade Fire at The Woodlands, May 4Moments ago, the Austin City Limits Music Festival announced its lineup for the 10th-anniversary weekend, scheduled for Sept. 16-18 in Zilker Park. Top names include Stevie Wonder, Coldplay, Kanye West, and Bright Eyes. P ... More >>
Provided they didn't take the easy way out and name themselves after a song (Rolling Stones), their hometown (Boston) or each other (Hall & Oates), almost every band that went on to sell millions of records, get tons of radio play and sell out arenas has had some form of the following convers ... More >>
Photos by Craig Hlavaty Coldplay carries with them almost every major defect available to make it possible for someone like Aftermath to hate them. Bandleader Chris Martin prances on the stage like a marionette detached from his strings for one, his gee-whiz smile notwithstanding. Just like the its ... More >>
Initiated by indie-rockers like Sonic Youth, Slint and Built to Spill at mid-2000s festivals - UK/U.S. hopover All Tomorrow's Parties and its various tie-ins being the most prominent - playing a beloved LP front to back in concert is now the hottest thing going on the classic-rock circuit. Within th ... More >>
The Gutter Twins Maybe Rocks Off spent a lot of 2008 with his head in the archives, but he was paying attention to new stuff too. Occasionally. It's as easy as satellite radio, channel 47's (Ethel/Alt Nation) weekly new-music hour Submission/Transmission. Monday night, S/T happened to be playing its ... More >>
Pop music often gets a bad rap for being disposable or vapid, and in many cases that's true. (Katy Perry, Danity Kane and the Pussycat Dolls, step right up!) But every year, a few irresistible bits of innovative ear candy rocket up the charts and seep into our subconscious. The following ten singles ... More >>
Photos by Mark C. Austin The problem with Chris Martin isn’t the fact that the Coldplay frontman writes lyrics that resemble something that might come from the diary of a seventh grader who sniffs magic markers (snow, it turns out, is white after all). No, it’s the fact that he almost forces p ... More >>
Who has the upper hand in various musician-celebrity marriages?
I know, I know. You're sitting there at work, thinking, "Gee, I wish there were a way I could appear to be working while actually measuring my musical knowledge across a broad spectrum of time periods and genres, and then translate that knowledge into a numerical score I can use to lord over my less ... More >>
My 11-year-old son John Henry hates U2. I can’t really figure it out, since he digs Coldplay. I thought it might have something to do with South Park’s recent skewering of Bono, but if I recall correctly, he has hated U2 since long before that episode aired. A year or so back, I loaded some Josh ... More >>
I thought beefs went out with the XFL, but apparently in the rap world, they still linger. Today, two of its biggest stars, Kanye West and 50 Cent, are both releasing albums, much to each other’s chagrin. The occasion is being trumped up by the media, tearing our nation at the seams. Will we illeg ... More >>
Stars of Track and Field perform Saturday, May 12, at the Engine Room, 1515 Pease, 713-654-7846. Joseph Arthur also performs.
Jenny Lewis primps for her big push
Thursday, May 19, at Numbers, 300 Westheimer, 713-526-6551.
Friday, March 18, at the Meridian, 1503 Chartres, 713-225-1717.
Travis starts cussing, but otherwise remains the same
Queen Norah reigns, Josh Groban pains, and lots of Natalie Maines
Chart-toppers in the UK, Ash is happy on the American club circuit. But how long will it stay there?
Radio wild card Coldplay struts in from the UK with plenty of attitude