Saturday, November 26, 2011 – Awkwardly Cast * Fake Believe

Awkwardly Cast (Sorry, No info on line)

Fake Believe (Houston, TX)

REVIEW – Space City Rock
Fake Believe, Talk Speak EP

While there’s nothing strictly wrong with the first two tracks of Fake Believe’s five-song EP, Talk Speak, I’ll admit they had me a little worried. The too-slick, hipster-ish dance-funk grooves on the verses of both “Pornography” and “Another Dead Romantic” didn’t get more than a shrug out of me — when there’s enough of a Rapture-like edge to the danciness, this sort of thing can work, definitely, but here it just seems like it’s killing time between the choruses, which are nicely fierce and rock-ish.

With “Card Homes,” though, things really start to look up. It’s a delicious, lush-yet-dark blast of synth-y pop-rock that gets manages to be ferocious and emo-boy raw while still holding onto that smooth, metallic sheen that covers the whole of Talk Speak; when the chorus comes, I want to drive fast and far away, howling along with guitarist/vocalist David Elbert’s increasingly tortured voice, and surprisingly, it hits me the same damn way each and every time I skip back to the start of the track. There’s just something about Elbert’s voice that fits perfectly here, and it’s hooked me hard.

“Warm Enough” continues in that vein, thankfully, ditching the proto-funk for more serious-sounding electro-rock as on “Card Homes,” with those Anniversary-esque, sci-fi-sounding synths and the little electronicized production touches throughout giving everything a near-future, right-around-the-corner feel. The track starts quiet and almost Portishead-like, but soon enough the melancholy gives way to bitter, just-distorted guitars, only to collapse eventually into pianos and drifting clouds, finally coming back in sky-high and coolly majestic, soaring way the hell over everything below.

Things come back down to earth for “Temporary,” which overstays its welcome just a bit, but even then I’m liking the layer-upon-layer way the band’s crafted their sound. In the hands of a different band, sure, I’ll grant that it might come off a bit self-indulgent, all the studio bits and the ultra-clean production and whatnot. On this EP, though, with these guys — hell, it just sounds like it was meant to be this way. And then, I feel the need to hear “Card Homes” again.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011 – Hell City Kings * Poor Dumb Bastards * The Wrong Ones

Hell City Kings (Houston, TX)

Formed in the Fall of 2004, the Hell City Kings appeared on the Houston punk/rock and roll scene with a well established following. With all of the Hell City Kings’ members having played in various other local bands for years, the group had no trouble playing packed shows throughout the Houston area. Due to the diligence of the band, their incredibly energetic and high intensity live shows, and …t…heir well founded reputation, the Hell City Kings quickly became the “go to” band for local booking agents looking for an opening act for some of their biggest shows. Among those acts were The Dwarves, The Reverend Horton Heat, and even European bands like Turbonegro. Venue size and location, the crowd or lack thereof, and juggling personal lives with band priorities could not keep the Hell City Kings down. The band has played shows ranging from sold out shows at the House Of Blues in Houston to local shows on weekends/weekdays at their home away from home, Rudyard’s Pub. No matter what the show may have to offer, as long as there are people looking for great rock and roll, the Hell City Kings are there to give it to them. Traveling out of town has also fueled the Hell City Kings’ desire to truly be a working band. Hell City Kings have played throughout Texas including Austin, San Antonio, and Corpus Christi. In addition to their love for playing live music, the Hell City Kings have also looked to duplicate that success in the studio. In 2006 the band released its first split 7”, with fellow Houston punks I Am Wolf, to rave reviews. Shortly after, they were nominated for “Best Punk Band” at the annual Houston Press Awards. Following the release of the split, Hell City Kings looked to expand their release repertoire with 2009’s “The Road To Damnation” LP. It took a while to find the right people for the job, but after numerous snags in the studio, the Hell City Kings forged ahead and finished recording in the first few months of 2009. Now, with the release of their first full length record, the Hell City Kings Are poised to take the rock and roll world by storm.

Poor Dumb Bastards (Houston, TX)

PDB was formed in March 1991 by long time hetero life partners and musical collaborators, Mike Porterfield and Byron Dean. The initial interest was to find a means to get into Emo’s for free, later they discovered Emo’s was always free. Drawing on their collective influences and experiences from some of their earlier work, bands like Cretinoid, Plutonium Flatheads and the Byron Weird Group, Mike and Byron set out create a genre all their own, hence “Texas Drunk Rock” was born. Add the non bass playing talents of Steve Scholtes and the competent, metronomic drumming of Chi Chi Macoola, and PDB were able to carve their initials on the bathroom door of the Texas music scene. Through the many years and many lineup changes, but these Ill-minded sewer rockers have stayed true to their founding principals. POWER, PERFORMANCE, PERVERSION


The Wrong Ones (Houston, TX)

“Rather than mine the pop-punk-y hooks that’ve become the template for the vast majority of punk bands lately, or even really hew close to the garage-rock that’s surged to the surface in recent years, on Deceiver, The Wrong Ones dive straight into the gutter. And while they’re down there, they mix it up with a whole lot of early NYC glam and sleazy, scummy metal, getting and giving a bloody nose and some ripped-up knuckles in the process. More than anything else, what this album makes me think of glam-metal forerunners Hanoi Rocks — like that band, The Wrong Ones ride the line between New York Dolls-style punk and flat-out sleazy, girls-and-blow metal like Faster Pussycat or L.A. Guns. Take a listen to the guitars for proof; ”
jeremy hart – space city rock

“The Wrong Ones come from the other side of the spectrum: brand-new noise that sounds crazy, the kind of stuff that makes record collectors and Ugly Things-magazine nerds shiver nervously while listening; like when you can’t stop touching that damaged and painful tooth ’cause it hurts so good. ”
Eric Springer – Rock is (not) dead

“The Wrong Ones I Love Love Ditchwater Records wrong ones.jpg Part of the new wave of Houston glam-punkers, the Wrong Ones have enough filthy swagger and destructive danger coursing through their veins to corrupt the whole city. Their new I Love Love seven-inch serves is a rightfully seedy opening salvo for the band. Lead singer Jarett “Neurotic” Barger and the rest of the Wrong Ones borrow heavily from the Johnny Thunders playbook, with a glossy sheen of puked-up Lone Star stinging every track. Side A offers up the title track and “Miss PDA,” spinning off your turntable and collapsing on your floor in a drunken stupor. It’s fun stuff, and B-side “Mannequin Girl” is five minutes of blistering, decadent thrash that seems to go for miles on paint fumes and glitter. Overall, this is a good primer for what’s in store for Houston if bands like the Wrong Ones start proliferating. Boys, start your man-orexing now.”
Craig Hlavaty – houston press

Saturday, November 19, 2011 – Fatback Circus * Killing Industry

Fatback Circus (Austin, TX)

Fatback Circus prides themselves on their open-ended originality and their distinctive songwriting. The band’s avant-garde style allows them to indulge in any classification of music, giving each song they create an original and new-fangled sound that is completely engaging. Dalton, Garrett, Nathan, and Aaron share an unyielding passion that will augment their style and their music for years to c…o…me. They’ve made a home for themselves in Austin, TX, though all four were raised in the small, college town of Stillwater, OK. Fatback Circus has released two albums: “The Elephant King” back in 2006 and their new album “Dark World”, which came out in late April. They are currently working on a third album to be released soon. You can catch their videos for “Jessica” and “World Color” on channel 15 METV Austin. Fatback Circus is playing heavily in the Austin area and are well on their way to becoming one of the most crowd-pleasing bands in the region.

Killing Industry (Austin, TX)

Sam Berniard and Chad Gowan, later joined by Mark Hammett and Jason Harrison, started Killing Industry in the summer of 2006. The four members have played in various projects together in the past, and share a common goal of making music from the soul. Their set draws upon a wide range of influences from the Police to the Dismemberment Plan. Berniard’s songs share a common theme of driving back beats, reggae influenced syncopation and soaring melodies in a convenient indie rock package.

Friday, November 18, 2011 – Titan Blood (7″ Release) * The Energy * Weird Party * The Mahas

Titan Blood (Houston, TX)

Titan Blood is a project of TB Collective. Influenced by Strength Thru Oi, Killed By Death Vol. 1, & D’Angelo. 7” out soon. DL the first tape here:



The Energy (Houston, TX)

On their first LP, Houston supergroup The Energy sounds like a band possessed by death. Imagine the spirit and ghastliness of “Death Trip,” from the Stooges’ Raw Power, drawn and quartered across eight tracks and you can understand The Energy’s First Album. Made up of members of No Talk, Hell City Kings and Wicked Poseur, The Energy’s noise is incredibly blunt and discards vaguery for outright depravity. Lead singer Arthur Bates sings about committing suicide or “jerking off to a riot” (“I Won’t Let You Waste Me”), sounding like Joey Ramone on a handful of downers. Every single one of the LP’s eight tracks throbs with desperation, especially the four-part “Stabbing in the Dark.” This is easily one of the bleakest albums to come out of Houston in the past few years, and it was birthed by more than capable hands from one of the city’s most vital musical nuclei. – Houston Press

Weird Party (Houston, TX)

Weird Party is nothing but a big pile of sweaty, audacious, ready-to-scrap Rock and Roll. Etched in their new 7” is all the snot, spit, and fire of the finest punk. Live, they are possessed men who rage with a fury that infects any unwitting crowd. Hell, they might even steal your girlfriend at the end of the night if you’re not careful. The thing is, for all the wild shows and kick-ass Rock and Roll, you won’t find another band that is as smart, droll, and dedicated to their craft as these guys. – Free Press Houston




The Mahas (Houston, TX)

Jacob Majors–Bass
Tom Triplett–Guitar
Billy Boyd–Drums
Scott McNeil–Guitar/Vocals



Thursday, November 17, 2011 – Generation Landslide * Dead Roses * Chelsea Hotel

Generation Landslide (Houston, TX)

GENERATION:landslide! is a band whose voice comes from the heart and soul of Houston, TX. There’s a raw element here seemingly absent from a great deal of the current bands that are touring and trying to make it. When I say “raw”, I don’t mean idiotic monkeys bashing things, needles peaking and your ears going into shock. No. These people are songwriters…artists…au

diophiles. They have a great passion fo…r music and the common man. They are the champions of “garage”-rock and psychedelia; a band of seekers. The band consists of Tom Underwood on Guitar/Vocals, Kathie Muncy on bass/Vocals, Sellers Thomas on guitar/vocals, and Charles Zittle on drums/vocals. The band’s first recording effort, “Tomorrow Was Yesterday”, was engineered by Steve Bundrick at (the now closed) Z-Lab Studios in Houston, TX (Bundrick has also filled in on drums from time to time as well as big Al Murphy). It features the guest talents of Greg Trifaldo, Greg Varhaug, and David Watkins as well as featuring the guitar talents of former member Wil Hudgens. Tom’s songwriting could be considered somewhere in the neighborhood of Warren Zevon, Lou Reed, and Tom Petty. There’s a strong pop sensibility with a raw punk edge.

Dead Roses (Houston, TX)

“We’re not just a band…..we’re a fucking tragedy” – with these immortal words, they launched into their debut set on Valentine’s Day of 2004, and H-town’s infamous DEAD ROSES were born. Since then, they have played shows with notable acts such as the DEMOLITION DOLLRODS, GLASS CANDY, DEAD MOON, BOBBY CONN, LOST SOUNDS, LES GEORGES LENINGRAD, FATAL FLYING GUILLOTINES, MEAT PUPPETS, and DIRT BOMBS. Heart broken, sleep deprived, glam damage is this group’s forte. Their formidable line-up includes former members of the LEPERS, INTROVERTS, CULTURCIDE, PAIN TEENS, TRUTH DECAY, VULGARIANS, NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCE, THE HAUNTING ALLURE OF ELKE PALLENBERG’S VOID, SWARM OF ANGELS, HIGH ALMOND CONTENT, NTX PISTOLS, DISCOMFORTRON, BALACLAVAS, FUTURE BLONDES, DIAMONDS AND PEARLS, AFTER PARTY, UNGARISCHE DEUTSCHE FREUNDSCHAFT, DOTS, MYSTERY FLAVOR, and BRIDE OF PINBOT to name a few. DEAD ROSES have recorded and re-recorded their epic first release nine times, but refuse to put it out until it absolutely meets their impossibly high standards of excellence. Other activities/interests include socializing with international superstars, needlepoint, speaking with fake foreign accents, experimenting with eyeliner, and getting kicked out of ALICE COOPER concerts.

Chelsea Hotel (Houston, TX)

This Houston, TX band is fronted by Robert Conn on guitar and vocals. Conn was one of the original members of The Pagans and Defnics from Cleveland, OH. Robert was also on The Plague “Just Say No” classic thrash punk album….. Conn maintains his raw edge “punk n’ roll” style of writing with Chelsea Hotel…..Bass duties are handled by Jewels. This Houston girl knows how to rock with the best of ’em, and she’s all about playin’ some kick ass Texas rock n roll!!!…. Curt DeGidio is on 2nd guitar. He is a great addition to the lineup. Curt hails from Cleveland, OH and did time with The Chrome Kickers as well as other projects… Drums are handled by Houston’s own Andy Chaos who just kills a drum kit with the power he puts out!! This is a rock n roll lineup you don’t want to miss….. The band has had Robb “Dog” Loughmiller on drums, former Junkyard man Max Gottlieb on guitar, Billy Kenner on drums and a brief time with Lonnie Vincent of The Bulletboys who sat in for a few gigs and practices in late ’08/ early ’09. Thanks to all who have passed through this band we call CHELSEA HOTEL, for that very reason!