Billie Eilish onstage at the Toyota Center last OctoberPhoto by Jennifer Lake
It’s been a rough week for Houston sports fans. The University of Houston Cougars blew a 12-point lead and fell to BYU’s nationally-ranked football team; then the Houston Astros lost Game 7, which means no World Series this year; and finally, the Houston Texans lost a nail-biter to the Tennessee Titans, a division rival and unbeaten opponent. Fortunately, this week’s forecast calls for decently cool weather (by Houston standards anyway), and there are some in-person live concerts happening in town. You’ll find them and a handful of the best streaming options below.
blackbear 8 p.m. CST – October 21
With a leg on each side of rap and pop, blackbear has joined the ranks of Drake and Post Malone in the ever-growing class of boastful crooners who just can’t seem to find happiness. His latest release, everything means nothing, saw the Florida native discussing depression and heartbreak in the day and age of social media and a worldwide pandemic atop infectious melodies. Self-pity and chauvinism abound, but the music sure is catchy. He live-streams a performance from lobby of the Hollywood Roosevelt at 8 p.m. tonight.
Shakey Graves White Oak Music Hall – October 23, October 24
Austin native Alejandro Rose-Garcia, better known by his stage name Shakey Graves, has risen to prominence among singer-songwriter circles in recent years. With three full-length albums and a handful of EPs to his name, Graves’ latest offering – Look Alive – coincides with the bluesy Americana artist’s foray into video production via a bi-weekly documentary series, which began streaming back in April. Fans can see him perform in-person this Friday and Saturday night at the first of White Oak Music Hall’s GRID Concert series, which will adhere to the city's recommendations for outdoor public gatherings.
PUP 8 p.m. CST – October 23
After 2016's The Dream Is Over launched them into the limelight, Toronto-born punk rockers PUP were tasked with following up their breakthrough sophomore album with another hard-hitting, self-deprecating offering. But would they be able to entice new fans while maintaining their appeal to longtime listeners? In a word, yes. Four years later, Stefan Babcock, Nestor Chumak, Zack Mykula and Steve Sladkowski returned to the fray with Morbid Stuff, which the band has described as a "recklessly fun ode to nihilism and depression." PUP – an acronym for Pathetic Use of Potential – will live-stream a concert this Friday – a first for the band – In support of their new EP This Place Sucks Ass.
Rufus Wainwright 4 p.m. CST – October 23
Elton John once called Rufus Wainwright "the greatest songwriter on the planet." Can it get any better than that? The son of a pair of musicians, the Canadian singer-songwriter has been touring since the tender age of 13. More than three decades later, Wainwright remains one of the most talented composers in the industry, with nine studio albums, three live records and dozens of features to his name. On Friday, fans can tune into the third of 18 live-streams that will see the New York native performing his studio albums in chronological order.
Billie Eilish 5 p.m. CST – October 24
At the tender age of 13, Billie Eilish had the makings of a star. With her brother as her co-writer, the Los Angeles native uploaded “ocean eyes” to Soundcloud in late 2015, just a month ahead of her 14th birthday. The track showed quite a bit of emotional depth for such a young artist, and it served as a jumping-off point for Eilish, who subsequently signed with Interscope and eventually released When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, which has sold more than three million copies since its release last March. The most macabre teen in pop is scheduled to live-stream a performance on Saturday.
Major Lazer White Oak Music Hall – October 26
This weekend, White Oak Music Hall will host its first in-person concerts since the COVID-19 pandemic forced it to shut its doors and rethink its business. One of those acts will be Jamaican-American electronic dance music trio Major Lazer, who just released the first single from their upcoming fourth studio album, Music Is The Weapon. Those of us who have been dying for some live music will have two opportunities to see Major Lazer on Monday: once at 3 p.m. and again at 7 p.m.
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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.