Post Malone Flexes Rockstar Muscles at a Sold-Out Woodlands Pavilion

Even Post Malone's pants are fire
Even Post Malone's pants are fire Photo by Matthew Keever
Post Malone
Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
June 15, 2018

Last October, following Post Malone's sold-out performance at House of Blues Houston, some friends and I walked across the street to Reserve 101, where we struck up a conversation with one of the bartenders. When we told her how much fun we had at the concert, she scoffed.

Dutifully, and perhaps a little drunkenly, I defended Post's music and star power. After a short back-and-forth, we made a friendly wager, and she agreed to name a drink after me if, on Post's return to Houston, he was headlining the Toyota Center or a similarly large venue.

Less than a year later, Austin Richard Post performed at a sold-out Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, where the cheapest tickets available were $129. I have yet to contact the young lady, but I think it's safe to say that Post's star is still rising... for now, at least.

From the moment Post emerged onstage Friday night, the crowd was turned all the way up to 10. The screams echoing through the Pavilion were so loud that I could barely hear the backing track to "Too Young," the second single from his debut album Stoney that discusses his fear of his life ending before he's ready.

He followed the bittersweet existential track with a few songs about a former lover, "Better Now" and "I Fall Apart," the latter of which was preceded and followed by chants of "Fuck that bitch!" from the crowd. A broad smile plastered on his face, Post told the crowd, "I think y'all might hate her more than I do."

The Dallas native later touted his Texas rap roots on "Candy Paint," which celebrates the kind of car culture our city is famous for. He may not be a local, but his collaborations with the likes of Trae tha Truth serve as proof that he has nothing but love for Houston.

About halfway through the concert, Post asked the crowd if he could play the guitar for them. As fans roared their approval, he added, "This is my favorite part of the show because I get to sit down." Intimate renditions of "Feeling Whitney" and "Jonestown" followed, providing his performance with a bit of variety and warmth.

But he didn't remain seated for long. After a short disappearance backstage, Post returned to close out the evening with four of his most popular tracks: "Go Flex," "rockstar," "White Iverson" and "Congratulations," each of which has been certified at least triple platinum by the RIAA. What resulted was a 15-minute stretch during which everyone in attendance sang along to just about every word.

For now, Post Malone is a rockstar. The real question is whether his music has any real staying power. His two albums, as bloated as they may be, have shown a lot of promise and moments of brilliance, providing him ample material for a killer live show. Time will tell if he can blend enough interesting elements together to remain relevant in an ever-changing industry.

In the meantime, I'll be thinking about what ingredients should go be in that drink I was promised.

Random Notebook Dump:
My wife's coworker — Hi, Wayne! — sent his kids to Friday night's show, so he was checking in with us to make sure things didn't get too crazy. When news broke that Trae tha Truth would be replacing 21 Savage on the bill, he sent her such a hilarious text that I felt I had to share it here: "(My son) is puzzled as to why a guy who was shot three six times can't perform because he has a cold." As they say on Twitter, shots fired.

Too Young
Better Now
No Option
Candy Paint
I Fall Apart
Up There
Feeling Whitney (acoustic)
Jonestown (acoustic)
Go Flex
White Iverson
KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Matt is a regular contributor to the Houston Press’ music section. He graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in print journalism and global business. Matt first began writing for the Press as an intern, having accidentally sent his resume to the publication's music editor instead of the news chief. After half a decade of attending concerts and interviewing musicians, he has credited this fortuitous mistake to divine intervention.
Contact: Matthew Keever