The Top 5 Shows

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Posted June 19, 2014 by ANTHONY MARIANI in Blotch
Tweak Bird: two brothers, lots of fuzz and stomp.Tweak Bird: two brothers, lots of fuzz and stomp.

As you may or may not have heard, the Weekly’s 12th Annual Music Awards Festival is 4-10 p.m. Sunday at eight venues in the West 7th corridor. Quaker City Night Hawks, Pinkish Black, Son of Stan, Telegraph Canyon, The Longshots, and 43 other Fort Worth bands are playing. It’s free. You should go to that, but until then …

1.) Tweak Bird is, uh, the shit. Guitarist/vocalist Caleb Bird and his brother, drummer/vocalist Ashton Bird, loudly motor their instruments through knotty, seemingly perilous passages under a purple haze of doom, bong smoke, and the lunarlike glow of the brothers’ soft, airy voices. Since forming in 2007, the L.A./Southern Illinois duo has put out two EPs and two albums, including the newish Any Ol’ Way, a thick and hearty slab of bite, explosiveness, and fuzz. “Is it filet mignon?” the Birds write on their website. “Nope! But who eats that shit anyway.”

The brothers lowly recommend seeing them perform. “Live shows are fun because you get the feeling that the hinges could come off at any moment, and guess what? Sometimes it happens, and it’s a total disaster, but it’s still more entertainment than a lame-ass beep beep boop robot show. Plus, Tweak Bird’s not famous, so you probably won’t pay more than 10 bucks to see them.”

Caleb and Ashton sound like cool dudes, and while I’m not a betting man, I’d gladly wager your ’94 Honda Civic that tonight (Thursday) at Three Links (2704 Elm St., Dallas) they share in the mass consumption of alcoholic beverages with the opening band, The Phuss, the veteran local proto-punk trio that recently signed with Magnetic Eye Records. (Fun fact: The guys in The Phuss like to drink. A lot.) Dallas’ Drug Animal is also on the bill. Authors of the hits “Honey, This Ain’t No Romance,” “And J.F.K. Will Have His Revenge on Dallas,” and “Crazy Women,” Drug Animal is horrible. But in a good way. OK, semi-decent. And -tumescent. Apparently.

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2.) Forget about “Danger Zone” and “Playing with the Boys.” Please. Well, watch this first, and then try to forget about those two groaners.

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In a minute or two (or maybe longer), the giggles will relent, which will allow you to focus on the greatness that is Kenny mother-fucking Loggins. And not a moment too soon either –– the sweetly soulful pop crooner performs tonight (Thursday) at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie (1001 Performance Pl., 972-854-5111) with another yacht-rock giant, Michael McDonald, plus “The Neutron Dance”-doing Pointer Sisters and the “Good Times”-havin’ Chic. “Danger Zone,” about as corny a song as can be, isn’t necessarily bad. The sliding, occasionally muted barre-chord riff is creamy Velveeta, the repetitive vocal line catchy, and the rhythm as propulsive as one of those fancy aeroplanes the guys fly in the movie. The song just isn’t Kenny, the bearded, wavy-haired stick figure of a man with the perma-popped pastel collar who put out perhaps one of the quirkiest, coolest hits of all time, “I’m Alright,” and who also sang the socks off dozens of lite-FM gems, including this juicy piece of smart, literate, melancholy yet positivist brilliance:

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If my beloved in-laws weren’t touring the Northeast in their 35-foot coach stocked with Glenfiddich bottles, Brad Thor novels, Gloria Estefan CDs, war documentaries, and comfy shoes, I’d totes take them to this. Of course I wouldn’t break the news to them that they’d be buying our luxury box suites until after our second or third Old Fashioned in the Verizon parking lot after 4:30 p.m. dinner at Olive Garden. I may be crazy, but I’m not crazy.

3.) Yuna is a radio-pop singer from Malaysia who seems pretty interesting. She’s performing Monday at The Kessler Theater (1230 W. Davis St., Dallas, 214-272-8346) with Moonrise Nation.

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4.) Saturday night. The entire night is No. 4. Your location: Fort Worth.

At Lola’s Saloon (2736 W. 6th St., 817-877-0666), one-man pop-rock machine Nathan Brown, some outfit called Spirit Animal, and Kenny Loggins if Kenny Loggins grew up in Sun Belt suburbia in the late 1980s, worked as a retail grunt at the mall to pay for his used Corsica, listened to rock records, and smoked a lot of dope, Son of Stan, will open for progressive indie-rock locals Calhoun. Cover is $10-12.

Down the street at The Grotto (517 University Dr., 817-882-9331), Denton hard-rock legends Baboon headline a bill that also includes a triumvirate of exceptional Fort Worth acts –– the My Bloody Valentine-esque Cush, the gritty Skeeves, and the stoner-metallic Huffer –– plus Panther Robe, which is apparently some new local project with thick, throbbing, veiny pedigree (Stumptone’s Chris Plavidal, Eyes Wings and Many Other Things’ Sean French and Collin Arnold, Dove Hunter’s Quincy Holloway and Chad DeAtley, and more). Cover is $8-12.

Lastly, at Shipping & Receiving (201 S. Calhoun St., 817-343-6393) on the Near Southside, Fort Worth neo-disco dynamo Ronnie Heart will take the stage and sing and dance all over that bitch, doing splits and shit, gyrating up and down, after St^llion (Ice Eater drummer/co-songwriter Wyatt Adams’ electro project), GW4, and One Little Indian, a.k.a. Jeevan Antony –– I had the pleasure of catching the diminutive Fou/Madras frontman swapping songs with Quaker City Night Hawks’ David Matsler a couple of Tuesday nights ago at Lola’s. Talk about chutzpah. After Matsler would finish a loud, gut-wrenching, soul-destroying Lightnin’ Hopkins or Robert Johnson cover, again reducing us few concertgoers to stunned puddles of tears for the sorry-ass state of humanity, little Antony would close his eyes –– the two musicians sat next to each other on stools –– and, like an ancient child-prince in a porcelain pool of gold-flecked wine, oooooze into one of his slow, softly soft, quiet little songs about breaking up or crying. Through no fault of Matsler’s, I kind of felt that at some points the Quaker City co-frontman was going to jump up from his chair, tear open his shirt, let out a blood-curdling roar, and then chomp off Antony’s head or right arm or something, and I sort of wanted to physically protect the little fella, but, damn, if Antony just didn’t keep plugging away, doing his own genteel thing and not trying to compete with his song-swapping compadre, understanding, naturally, that going toe to toe with David Matsler is a fool’s errand. Dude’s a monster. Metaphorically speaking, of course. Whew.

5.) I thought Sally Majestic broke up. Like, a couple of years ago. Anyway, not only did the veteran Chili Pepper-ish Fort Worth act not break up, but the guys have a new record coming out. Color me not surprised. The dudes play Friday at The Rail (3101 Joyce Dr., 817-560-RAIL) with Panic Volcanic, Dead Oak, and The Cosmic Trigger, another groovy local outfit with a new album on the way.

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