Top 5 Shows
Editor’s note: The following are recommended in addition to The Dangits’ album release show at Lola’s Saloon Saturday and Collin Herring’s CD release at The Aardvark Friday.
1.) Rhett Miller, naturally, is the biggest reason to spend Saturday night at Shipping & Receiving (201 S. Calhoun St., 817-343-6393). The native Dallasite co-founded and leads the Old 97’s, whom I hear are quite the attraction among Americana lovers. But along with Dallas’ Salim Nourallah, the bill also includes two Fort Worth acts that are sort of in restart mode: CoyoteHead, featuring ex-members of dearly departed alt-country rockers the cut*off, and chanteuse Brenna Manzare, who’s been on hiatus for a good while. Should be interesting. Tickets are $15.
2.) New Theater Fire is on the way. Maybe you’ll get a taste Thursday at Fred’s Texas Café (915 Currie St., 817-332-0083), where Theater Fire songwriter and cancer beater Curtis Heath will perform with Jayson Wortham and Stumptone frontman/founder Chris Plavidal.
Oh, yeah. New Stumptone is on the way too.
3.) Dallas’ Black Dotz bring the noise, that’s for sure, busting out loud, greasy, groovy punk-inspired R&B. Call it “aggro-soul.”
Check ’em out Saturday in Dallas at Double Wide (3510 Commerce St., 214-887-6510) with George Quartz and Wiving.
4.) I went through a tough, unnecessarily protracted breakup in college with a girl I’d been dating for a couple of years. Before we said our final goodbye, we spent a few months apart, communicating only via letters and notes. She almost won me back –– almost –– after sending me a beautiful poem that began:
Nothing’s so loud
As hearing when we lie
The truth is not kind
And you’ve said neither am I
But the air outside so soft is saying everything
All I want is to feel this way
To be this close, to feel the same
All I want is to feel this way
The evening speaks, I feel it say
As an English lit major and aspiring poet, I was floored, amazed that a person whom I’d known only as a, uh, romantic combatant was also an artful deep thinker. Oh, Name Redacted! How could I have been so blind, my sweetest Name Redacted?!
And then I heard the freaking song on the radio.
I felt so stupid. Not because I thought she was trying to trick me. She was really too good –– and too smart –– of a person to try to pass off several dozen incredibly popular words as her own. No, I felt ridiculous for being so out of touch. Name Redacted was lots of things, but what I’ll always remember –– and appreciate –– her for was her great taste in music. If not for her and her slightly older brother, I probably never would have fallen in forever-love with The Smiths, R.E.M., New Order, Better than Ezra, and Toad the Wet Sprocket.
“All I Want” and “Walk on the Ocean” –– could there even be two better, more cinematic, more beautiful radio-rock tunes from the ’90s? If there are, I haven’t heard them.
In October, Toad (that’s what we fans call them, “Toad”) put out an album, New Constellation, the band’s first in 16 years, and on Friday will be in Dallas at House of Blues (2200 N. Lamar St., 214-928-BLUE).
5.) Bauhaus is arguably the first goth-rock band, having formed in late ’70s. Blending buzzing, shimmering drone, nihilistic lyrics, and spooky, often incantatory vocals, the Northampton quartet was short lived and remained an underground commodity until rediscovered in the late 1990s. In the 1980s, as the other three guys went on to form the somewhat popular Love & Rockets, frontman Peter Murphy went solo, and it was during his solo era that he pumped out his one and only mainstream (semi-mainstream, maybe) hit, “Cuts You Up.”