A trademark of a well-written novel is a complex, engaging central character. It's the author's most important and difficult job to create someone readers will be interested in and have strong feelings about. Same thing with a captivating movie. Did you see Silver Linings Playbook? That was a gre ... More >>
Stop me if you've heard this one -- a lawyer, a doctor, and a writer walk into a bar... Yeah, I'm not exactly sure of the punchline, but that's exactly what happened when I met up with last Friday with the guys from Scienter, Houston's own self-described "melodic alt-rock" group. Led by frontman ... More >>
I don't like these songs. I feel it's ridiculous that hundreds of thousands of people actually paid out money and drove them to the top of the Billboard charts. While they might not necessarily be the absolute worst examples of the lowest common denominator's purchasing power, they quickly came to m ... More >>
Last year on this date in honor of what would have been late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain's 45th birthday, I wrote a blog supposing where the grunge icon would have been in 2012. It got a lot of traction and people loved and hated it. Imagining him as a dubstep DJ was really for grins and shock valu ... More >>
Justice House of Blues October 28, 2012 "They told me if I brought out this flag they would kick me out," says a guy dressed like Hunter S. Thompson sitting next to me on the balcony last night at Justice. In his cargo pocket was a large French flag, in honor of the French electro duo who made thei ... More >>
While they were on tour behind 1987's The Joshua Tree, U2 -- either homesick and looking for fun, bored or legitimately curious to see if the people who showed up that early would recognize them -- booked themselves as their own opening act on the Los Angeles, Indianapolis and Hampton, Va. stops und ... More >>
While most Texans are spending their Friday counting down to ACL or speculating about the Fun Fun Fun Fest line up, I find myself thinking about a festival north of our fair state. We're halfway through June and that means that the 2012 Gathering of the Juggalos infomercial should be dropping any da ... More >>
The Beatles had a problem. They were getting up to 400 pieces of fan mail every day. Not a bad problem to have, but consider the math: That's 2,800 letters a week, 12,000 letters in a short month, and up to 146,000 letters in a year. Even with four members answering their share of the letters, that' ... More >>
Had he not died in April 1994 by his own hand -- or sinister forces working for Courtney Love (insert maniacal laugh) -- Kurt Cobain would have turned 45 years old today. The rock icon killed himself at the age of 27, leaving behind not only a daughter to fend for herself against the wiles of ... More >>
Oh, don't be such a cynic. Matt Damon needs your love in We Bought a Zoo.
The Texans are in first place (for now), the Texas Rangers may become the Lone Star State's first-ever World Series champions tomorrow (ouch), and early voting for the November 8 mayoral/City Council election started Monday. The Houston Press Music Awards showcase is less than three weeks awa ... More >>
Arctic Monkeys, Version 2011This past decade, 2006 was one of the better years in music, with a ton of debuts, great albums and catchy singles. It was also the year this member of Rocks Off started putting his musical critiques into a computer, joining the great circus known as the music indu ... More >>
All that's left of The Zone's Web site.Cox Communications has shuttered its fledgling "alternative hits" concept, 106.9 The Zone, and begun simulcasting The Eagle, The Zone's "classic hits" next-door neighbor, on that frequency as of 5:30 a.m. this morning. "The Eagle's Classic Hits forma ... More >>
It's hard to fathom a time before music videos, and it's even sadder to remember when channels like MTV and VH1 were wall-to-wall music videos. In between there was a golden age, when with every clip that you watched could spark a revolution in you, or at least change your fashion sense. It's ... More >>
UPDATE (3:23 p.m.): Promotional video by Monica Fuentes added after the jump. Jay LeeLittle Joe Washington at the Continental Club's 10th anniversary, July 2010Slowly but surely, Rocks Off has been getting ready for our "Shot In the Dark" photo exhibition at Warehouse Live's Studio next Thur ... More >>
Photo by Adam ElmakiasRocks Off sat down with guitarist and vocalist for alternative punk rock sensation Yellowcard http://www.yellowcardrock.com, whose new video "Hang You Up" is the only reason we can think of to brave MTV these days, to see what we could learn about him in 30 seconds. Roc ... More >>
Trends in music can be as prevalent - and subsequently fleeting - as they are in fashion. Though the eagerness to join trendy-indie bandwagons can be puzzling, music's most recent instrumental trend, the ukulele, grabbed our attention, especially after SXSW. Among the dozens of SXSW-related ... More >>
"I fantasize sometimes that my musical career would hit gold and help us escape these grim realities, but it's not something I really expect to happen." There are few issues in the current political climate more fraught with contention than whether or not the U.S. government will take a more ... More >>
Neil Young has spawned many children in the indie/folk-rock community, many of whom have directly constructed their style based on the Canadian humanitarian's more acoustic oeurve rather than the ragged-glory feedback cues that goosed grunge gods like Pearl Jam a generation ago. In the tradi ... More >>
Photos by Jim BrickerLady In Red: Tontons singer Asli Omar Were you there? You might want to look for yourself in this slideshow of crowd shots. Be sure to also check out the pics of the bands. Around 9 p.m. Saturday, Rocks Off was walking out of Tacos A Go-Go and ran into Main Street Block ... More >>
It's often the little things that make our favorite songs our favorites - the curious, unforeseen additions of small touches like an understated bit of whistling. For those who like to categorize their playlists into themes, we present you with the Rocks Off approved Whistle Playlist. The S ... More >>
Not official Nike footwear.Like most of Western society, I'd figured I was pretty much numb to the use of popular songs in commercials. I don't know how far back the practice dates, exactly, but I remember the anecdote from No One Here Gets Out Alive about Jim Morrison shooting down the sugge ... More >>
'Tis the season for office Christmas holiday parties. No doubt you have already had yours at work, or are getting ready for one. They all include copious drinking, great food, stolen glances, slurry conversations, "Can ah bum ah cigarette?" and intentional accidental groping. No bonus this ... More >>
Craig HlavatyDealey Plaza in downtown Dallas Warning: Some of these videos contain very graphic images. Anyone who knows Rocks Off, even in passing, knows of his fierce JFK assassination obsession. The theories, the scientific data, the literature and the various opinions shooting through the Int ... More >>
The 2009 Austin City Limits Music Festival became a quagmire everywhere but onstage.
The loquacious Irishman is pathologically incapable of keeping his opinions to himself.
Photos by GroovehouseOf all the bands at ACL this year, Ghostland Observatory and Girl Talk competed heavily against one another for the most visually compelling acts. But because we can see lasers down at the Pink Floyd show at the planetarium just about any old time, our vote g ... More >>
Today Rocks Off is starting a recurring series of local music urban legends; not so much 'urban legends' in the sense of oft-repeated stories that turn out to be false - though those are fine too - but actual legends: events and incidents that get talked about so much they become a part of local lor ... More >>
In case you missed it - and if you value your immortal soul, we're sure you did - Hannah Montana star/future tell-all memoir author Miley Cyrus unveiled a newer, more "mature" look last weekend at the only venue appropriate for such things: the Teen Choice Awards. Nothing says "successful transitio ... More >>
Does the U.S. belong with the Axis of Evil?
If productivity alone conferred greatness, then flinty rock scribbler Dave Thompson would be the Trollope of pop-culture quick reads. I Hate New Music is the latest of over 100 titles this insta-book wizard has blinked into being. And dig the intro penned by the legendary Richard Meltzer, the Big Ba ... More >>
Mark C. AustinMonday morning, word came down from Aerosmith and ZZ Top's respective camps, via Billboard, that the two boogie-rocking bands are teaming up for a massive world tour. After some digging, Rocks Off found out the tour makes its Houston-area stop Friday, July 17, at the Cynthia Wood ... More >>
If singers were cheese, what kind of cheese would they be?
Nelly Furtado's new ho do
Recollections of Nirvana's three Houston shows
Sleater-Kinney graduates from the club circuit to shed shows. Is the world ending?
NIN was an unexpected treat, but Hole was a sorry trick
Brad Tyer finds fun, more fun and big fun on the Richmond Strip
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