Death Valley Nights

Ian McLagan 1945-2014

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame keyboardist and 20-year Austin resident Ian McLagan suffered a stroke on Monday and was admitted to Brackenridge Hospital on Tuesday, where he died Wednesday at 2:39pm according to those who worked with him. Read More | Comment »

3:17PM Wed. Dec. 3, Raoul Hernandez

Levitation Uncorks 2015 Lineup

Three-dozen acts offloaded from the Levitation mothership just now, the re-branded Austin Psych Fest. While South by Southwest has revealed 400 names for March madness, and last week Rodeo Austin shot out of the gate with its lineup, Levitation now kicks in with a hefty dose of its May 8-10, 2015, freak flag at the idyllic Carson Creek Ranch once again. Read More | Comment »

11:13AM Wed. Dec. 3, Kevin Curtin & Raoul Hernandez

Rodeo Austin Re-Enlists Dwight Yoakam

Best music I saw during South by Southwest this year? Dwight Yoakam at Rodeo Austin. Work hell meant yours truly took in exactly two acts at the festival, for which my antidote has become spending the last Sunday of SXSW at the Travis County Expo Center. My wife and I hosted The New York Times and Rolling Stone for Yoakam – returning to that same Sunday in 2015. Read More | Comment »

11:30AM Mon. Nov. 24, Raoul Hernandez

S-L-A-Y-E-R Siege

Oakland Raiders receiver Fred Biletnikoff had flypaper hands, jack rabbit moves, and elusive grace over the middle. Slayer is none of these things, but when Kerry King approached the drum riser to commune with Paul Bostaph and revealed the football Hall of Famer’s name on the back of his jersey, the unholy tie between brute sport and thrash metal roared. Read More | Comment »

11:11AM Wed. Nov. 19, Raoul Hernandez

Stephen King Revival

You’ve got one opportunity only, because there are some 449 others getting Revival signed too, which happens in just under 90 minutes on the third floor of BookPeople. Most have something prepared – a short, fast burst, or a single point (hopefully) of intersect. Others just nod and smile, and utter nothing at all. What would you say to Stephen King? Read More | Comment »

11:47AM Mon. Nov. 17, Raoul Hernandez

Housecore Horror Live Shot: Saturday Part 1

Day two of heavy metal parking lot dawned hotter than the previous afternoon at Midway Field House. Conditions increased in severity the next six hours. Torrid, more bodies, unrelenting, Saturday turned Friday here into kiddie pool fodder. What sun on concrete missed by degrees – just shy of 90 – seasoned metallurgists made up for in scorched earth sets. Read More | Comment »

12:47PM Sun. Oct. 26, Raoul Hernandez

Housecore Horror Live Shot: Friday Part 1

Once again, they paved over paradise with a parking lot. A heavy metal parking lot. Read More | Comment »

10:07AM Sat. Oct. 25, Raoul Hernandez

ACL Fest Cancels Early Acts Due to Rain

This just in from the ACL Fest press office: “Due to heavy rains overnight and into this morning, we will be delaying the start of ACL Festival today by one hour. Doors will open at 12pm with the first bands beginning at 12:30.” Read More | Comment »

10:57AM Sat. Oct. 11, Raoul Hernandez

Ringo Starr’s Still the Greatest

Scale: two nights by Paul McCartney at the Erwin Center in May versus Ringo Starr’s pair of performances at the Moody Theater this week. Call it a difference of 20,000 fans. And yet, when the Beatles drummer touched off “Yellow Submarine” halfway through a two-hour set Wednesday night at the Moody Theater, it was equally – and literally – breathtaking. Read More | Comment »

2:02PM Thu. Oct. 9, Raoul Hernandez

Soul Track Mind: Unbreakable

Sharon Jones’ new millennial emergence put sweet soul music back into the mainstream. Not only did the Brooklyn dynamo’s indie rock favor throw the spotlight back on forgotten elders Bettye LaVette, Charles Bradley, and Lee Fields, it sparked seminal new acts including Jones’ Dap-Kings and Mayer Hawthorne. Welcome Soul Track Mind to the latter stable. Read More | Comment »

4:20PM Mon. Sep. 15, Raoul Hernandez

White Denim Television

“One of our own,” nodded Terry Lickona Monday night during his introduction to White Denim. “About time they set foot on our stage.” Taping season 40 of Austin City Limits, the local fourpiece actually set eight feet onstage, which then proceeded to tap, tip-toe, and pogo over a 75-minute set. Drummer Josh Block nearly beat a hole in his bass drum. Read More | Comment »

11:59AM Tue. Aug. 5, Raoul Hernandez

Sacred & Profane: Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds

Shaking the ACL Live at the Moody Theater temple Saturday and Sunday, three-and-a-half hours and 31 gut shots all total, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds alternately caressed and flayed its flock. At the former main event, a sold-out concert prior to the band’s Austin City Limits taping, Cave reached down and rubbed both ears of a man in the front row. Read More | Comment »

1:30PM Mon. Jul. 21, Raoul Hernandez

Johnny Winter (1944-2014)

Baby bands take note: You don’t want a feature about your act in the Chronicle. Used to be bands simply broke up after landing on our cover (looking at you Ed Hall, playing this Saturday at the North Door). Now, the curse is worse. Two weeks to the day after our Johnny Winter story comes the news that the Beaumont blues great died in Zurich yesterday. Read More | Comment »

1:00PM Thu. Jul. 17, Raoul Hernandez

July Is Crime Month: Raymond Chandler’s 'The Long Goodbye'

Sometime during the Seventies, a decade that took me from 5 to 15, a neighbor who spent a significant portion of his career in Naval intelligence hunting our native Bay Area’s Zodiac because his employers feared the killer’s ciphers made him one of theirs, gave me a worn paperback of Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye. My mind still reels. Read More | Comment »

11:30AM Fri. Jul. 11, Raoul Hernandez

2014 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Broadcast

Even at its most pompous, elitist, self-aggrandizing, and racist, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame betrays a glimmer of hope. After many takeaways from the three-hour HBO taping, showing numerous times this month, the closing highlight reel rewinds only three notable African-Americans in the entire show. Blacks did, after all, invent the genre. Read More | Comment »

6:35PM Fri. Jun. 6, Raoul Hernandez

Vulcan (Video) Mind Meld

Vulcan Video rules me once more. Late last millennium, mending a broken heart, I plundered the rental magnate’s French/Spanish film wall like a privateer. Catherine Deneuve, Penelope Cruz, Agnes Varda – my ransoms. With their forever West Campus hub at 29th and Guadalupe relocated to North Loop, I’m now within walking distance. Suck it, Netflix. Read More | Comment »

2:00PM Fri. May. 30, Raoul Hernandez

Meat Loaf Gets ‘Stage Fright’

When is a film so bad that it’s good? Cinephiles still cite 1995 Paul Verhoeven/Joe Eszterhas wreck Show Girls in the latter category, but even inebriated, yours truly didn’t find any humor in its schlock. Though an unabashed Meat Loaf fan, I couldn’t rally even one star for his new film Stage Fright, opening locally in two midnight screenings this weekend. Read More | Comment »

4:20PM Wed. May. 28, Raoul Hernandez

Margaret Moser Plaza

Last Thursday, amid the hustle and bustle of our Downtown, a sanctuary of benches and palm trees next to the Austin Music Hall was christened Margaret Moser Plaza for the Chronicle’s senior music writer. The next day, after 33 years logged on this newsweekly’s music beat, she retired. Read More | Comment »

1:45PM Tue. May. 20, Raoul Hernandez

Summer Fun: A Cheeseburger at the Blue Hole

Barton Springs: Love the lawn, fear the water. Wimberley’s Blue Hole, there I’m a duck. We made it out three times last summer, the final one with our beloved Aunt Nancy, who died during SXSW in March. Four people killed in a hit and run, a dear friend and SX crew chief lost her father suddenly that weekend, and my wife’s aunt – Nancy Varnum – never woke up. Read More | Comment »

5:25PM Fri. May. 16, Raoul Hernandez

Springsteen’s High Hopes in Houston

Bruce Springsteen’s SXSW showcase at the Moody Theater in 2012 meant the E Street Band never returned to play for 10,000 additional diehards at the Erwin Center, a fact he lamented in citing Texas when asked if the tour would return to the U.S. after an Australian trek this winter. Dallas and Houston got theirs this spring, the latter on Tuesday. Read More | Comment »

4:20PM Thu. May. 8, Raoul Hernandez

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