Fort Worth’s Vatican Press is doing that trashy, raw, new-Brit-pop thing and pretty well. The sound’s equal parts Bowling For Soup and The Color of May, everything held together by faith, hope, and Elmer’s glue. TVP plays tomorrow (Saturday) at the Aardvark (2905 W Berry St, by TCU, 817-926-7814). Also on tap: the equally raw but much more indie PVC Street Gang, the noisy Krankenhaus (the Dallas band, not the European one), and the precious, hearts-on-their-faux-vintage-sleeves Ones You Loved.

Also tomorrow (Saturday), some members of Spoonfed Tribe and some other assorted hippie musos will be gathering at Lola’s Saloon Sixth (2736 W 6th St, by the Cultural District, 817-877-0666) to get all crazy and bang on stuff as The Skin and Bones Drum Cult.

On Sunday, there’s the joyous Afro-pop of white-boy Joel Laviolette and Rattletree Marimba, e-hippies Katsuk, and Texas Musician Kurt South at Fred’s Texas Café, 915 Currie St, in the West 7th Street corridor, 817-332-0083)


Here’s an off-Broadway show I’m hoping comes to Casa Manana: ‘Rock of Ages,’ a jukebox musical and “a seriously silly, absurdly enjoyable arena-rock musical that thrashed open at the Brooks Atkinson Theater on Tuesday night in front of a bobbing sea of cigarette lighters waved aloft,” said the ‘Times’’ Charles Isherwood in a recent review. “The frothing piles of pleated, teased, bleached, dyed and fried tresses being tossed around in this new show about the good old days — in this case the 1980s on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles — make ‘Hair’ look tame indeed, virtually Rogaine-ready, the Yul Brynner of musicals.”

Minor quibble: In addition to mentioning tracks by Poison and Twisted Sister, Isherwood says some of the show’s other songs include REO Speedwagon’s “Can’t Fight This Feeling,” Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing,” Foreigner’s “Waiting for a Girl Like You,” Jefferson Starship’s “We Built This City,” and an unidentified track by Pat Benatar.

But I thought ‘Rock of Ages’ was set in Sunset Strip in the ‘80s? The bands that ruled Whisky A-Go-Go, The Roxy, and the rest of the strip back then were L.A. Guns, Ratt, Quiet Riot, and Guns ‘N’ Roses. Not Pat Benatar. Not REO Speedwagon. Not Foreigner. WTF?!

Here’s a music-genre cheat sheet (that ‘Rock of Ages’’ producers would do well to study): Journey, Foreigner, Pat Benatar, Starship, et al.: Please file under “pop rock” (catchy, soft in the center). Poison, Twisted Sister, Ratt, Motley Crue, Winger, Bon Jovi: They’re hair-metal (big hair, tight pants, celebratory), NOT to be confused with heavy-metal (no makeup, loud, sometimes serious to a fault).

So. Just so we’re clear:

Here’s a (bad-ass) quintessential heavy-metal song. And another (with perhaps the longest toilet-flush ending of all time).

Here’s a (bad-ass) quintessential hair-metal tune. And another (one that’s kinda weird because the singer is prettier than the proverbial distraught girlfriend in the video).

And here’s an instance of the rare and excruciatingly bad-ass heavy-/hair-metal hybrid. Just FYI: The video was shot years before frontman Rob Halford came out of the closet and basically confirmed what people with eyes and ears already knew. In the linked video above, he plays Natalie Wood’s character from ‘Rebel Without a Cause,’ and in another Priest song, “Livin’ After Midnight,” doesn’t he at one point say, “Ahhhh’m gonna blow ya”?!? Anyway, watching the first video, try not to let the state-of-the-art special effects distract you from the song. Here’s another heavy-/hair- hybrid vid, one whose costumes and special effects are almost as high-tech.

Finally, (girly, feely) pop-rock.

See the difference(s)?