The Austin Chronicle

https://www.austinchronicle.com/music/2024-02-23/the-austin-music-awards-a-black-rock-maverick-and-more-crucial-concerts/

The Austin Music Awards, a Black Rock Maverick, and More Crucial Concerts

Our recommended shows for the week ahead

By Rachel Rascoe, Miranda Garza, Kevin Curtin, Carys Anderson, Raoul Hernandez, Elizabeth Braaten, Genevieve Wood, Doug Freeman, and Derek Udensi, February 23, 2024, Music

Bratty

Friday 23, Empire Control Room

A week after debuting at Coachella, Bratty bandleader Jenny Juárez brought her dreamy-then-spiky bedroom pop to last year’s Austin Psych Fest ahead of Cuco (who she’d previously worked with on lovesick psychedelic wash “Fin Del Mundo”). A notable breakout from Mexico to the stateside alternative music scene, the Culiacán, Sinaloa singer-songwriter cut back on features to return to her swoony pop bona fides on latest album TRES. Also playing with Spanish-language folk influences – through from a more somber, strummy perch – Dallas solo act Paula Prieto joins ahead of her own upcoming Lollapalooza Argentina stop.   – Rachel Rascoe


The Infinites Album Release

Friday 23, Radio/East

Five years after the release of their self-titled debut album, the Infinites have yet to dim their sun-soaked sound and imaginative lyricism. The band’s penchant for storytelling persists on sophomore effort Archetypes, where each song explores the depth of different characters ranging from “The Ghost” to the “Secret Agent.” Subdued electric currents flow throughout the record, jolted by a tag team of rumbling bass notes and grounding drum patterns. Supporting the sophomore release will be the Stacks’ alternative, guitar-heavy antics, dorothy’s jangle-pop ambience, and Gummy Fang’s static twee melodies.   – Miranda Garza


Alex Maas, Christian Bland

Friday 23, LuxeArt Hangar

Fission occurs when a heavy atom splits into multiple lighter ones. Such a reaction occurs Friday, when the nucleus of psychedelic favorites the Black Angels divides into separate solo performances from singer/multi-instrumentalist Alex Maas (8:30pm) and guitarist Christian Bland (7:30pm). The intimate show, live at the LuxeArt Hangar atop the SoCo hill, also welcomes Gran Moreno (9:30pm) – a heavy guitar-n-drums rock duo that formed in Mexico City and now hangs their hat in Austin. Hit it early for Gus Baldwin (6:30pm) who injects songwriting earworms into frantic garage stylings.   – Kevin Curtin


Twin Peaks Day Party

Saturday 24, Hotel Vegas

Diane, 8pm, February 24. Entering the town of Twin Peaks. On the fateful day that Special Agent Dale Cooper began his investigation into the death of Laura Palmer, indulge in cocktails, coffee, and donuts, then catch performances by Lauren Lakis, Middle Mass, members of Queen Serene and Fading Yellow (dubbed here, naturally, the Bookhouse Boys), and Caleb Landry Jones – who played Becky Briggs’ shithead husband Steven Burnett in The Return. Feels So Good pops up with Lynch-worshipping merch, and Raphael Umscheid, EL DRIPCUTS, and TV EYE provide appropriately spooky visuals. Isn’t it too dreamy?   – Carys Anderson


Alesia Lani

Saturday 24, Central Library

Among the Austin Public Library’s storytelling segments and spoken-word workshops, this year’s Black History Month celebration spotlights the melodic R&B cohesion of Alesia Lani. Velvet vocals ebb and flow between thudding basslines on her 2023 sophomore album Self-Titled, where Lani’s neo-soul meets heartfelt lyricism. A funk-fueled force to be reckoned with, “I Don’t Mind” piles stark harmonies against infectious grooves. The nine-track project also features notable collaborations, like the electric-addled “Breaking Me Down” with Jackie Venson and the beat-driven, piano-accented “Big Shot” with Magna Carda. Lani’s library performance is free and open to the public.   – Miranda Garza


Bevis M. Griffin: Texas Black Rock Maverick

Saturday 24, Texas Music Museum

“Grown men playing with adult weapons and sophistication galvanized Franklin’s Mast’s young Black singer/drummer Bevis Griffin,” led off the second chapter of Tim Stegall’s “Austin Punk Chronicles.” Published in these pages on the precipice of the pandemic, January 2020, “Glam Punks of 70s Austin Get Up to Their Gypsy Tricks” dusted off the Texas state capital’s barely documented transition between classic rock to punk and beyond. Pivotal to that moment, our town’s seminal constant, Griffin, continues pinpointing a singular moment in music evolution. Author Gene Fowler elicits stories, history, and inspiration starting at 2pm.   – Raoul Hernandez


The Austin Music Awards

Sunday 25, Antone’s Nightclub

For 42 years, the AMAs have celebrated the creatives that make our city the Live Music Capital of the World – from singers and guitarists to sound engineers, bookers, and instrument repair shops. As voted by the public, this year’s Austin Music Poll winners are announced in this week’s Chronicle (grab a paper now!), priming Sunday’s shindig for pure celebration. Tickets benefit the SIMS Foundation and get you in to see performances by DAIISTAR, Pussy Gillette, S.L. Houser, Walker Lukens, Ben Kweller, Sabrina Ellis, Kalu James, Eve Monsees, Kevin Russell, and many more.   – Carys Anderson


fish narc

Monday 26, Mohawk

Anyone with a place in their heart for SoundCloud-era emo rap owes a lot to fish narc. After pivoting to the genre following the dissolution of his band, he joined hip-hop collective GothBoiClique and rose to prominence by producing tracks for late greats Lil Peep and Juice WRLD. Now fresh off bedroom-pop-meets-post-punk album fruiting body and a stint touring with Lil Tracy, he’s focusing on his own sound. With opening sets from frequent collaborators – L.A. rapper Horse Head, Philadelphia emo artist Zubin, and San Antonio’s very own JPDREAMTHUG – this lineup showcases some of GBC & Co.’s finest.   – Elizabeth Braaten


A.L. West, McMercy Family Band

Monday 26, Sagebrush

Daniel Bryson’s quartet, A.L. West, melts warm, drowsy guitar jams like late-Nineties indie bands before they had to fill a bigger-stage sound, a bedroom Built to Spill. Last November’s underrated debut LP, The Store, gently mellows behind Bryson’s reedy hum and cradling melodies. The lead-up plays equally impressive with the McMercy Family Band (Dan Grissom, Lindsey Verrill, et al.) stomping their new old-time folk, Wilson Marks drawing his playfully poetic Harry Nilsson vibes from last year’s Won’t Fit in a Song, and the Deer’s Grace Rowland stepping solo.   – Doug Freeman


Vader, Origin

Wednesday 28, Come & Take It Live

In the before times, a certain Hispanic headbanger bought Vader bandleader Piotr Wiwczarek Mexican beers and a blue-collar feast at Taco More, an incognito lip-smacker between Emo’s and Come & Take It Live. He recounted Iron Maiden opening its World Slavery tour in Poland, which mimicked the Beatles on Ed Sullivan: a national music movement 24 hours later. His death metal pioneers remain the first shot across the bow of the Polska metal scene and splintered gates for extremists Batushka, Behemoth, Decapitated, and Hate. Vader’s 40th anniversary victory lap ignites with brutal support from Kansan tech death dealers Origin.   – Raoul Hernandez


KVRX’s Remixed & Reimagined

Thursday 29, Chess Club

With new showcase Remixed & Reimagined, UT-Austin’s tastemaking student radio station celebrates Black History Month with four phenomenal local talents. Shapeshifting opener Alesia Lani swings between lo-fi vibrations and guitar-driven R&B with ease, while vocalist Égaux Sells’ heaven-sent soprano guides the meditative moods of jazz fusion group BluMoon. When not spinning records on KVRX under alias DJ BOOTYSHORTS, solo artist Vonne devises dreamy bedroom pop melodies that draw from jazz composition. Riding the high of recently released EP Enough, musical polymath Daniel Fears cites crooners Masego and Dijon as inspirations for his distinctive brand of contemporary R&B.  – Genevieve Wood





Music Notes

by Derek Udensi

Diana Ross

Tuesday 27, ACL Live at the Moody Theater

Select seats starting at $99 remain for those enduring a “Love Hangover” from Valentine’s Day.

RMR

Tuesday 27, Antone’s

The once-anonymous singer-rapper first gained attention for “Rascal,” a post-“Old Town Road” track featuring a chorus about vengefully scamming due to heartbreak that heavily incorporates elements of Rascal Flatts’ “Bless the Broken Road.” He followed with the June 2020 EP DRUG DEALING IS A LOST ART before starkly cutting back his output. RMR (pronounced “rumor”) reemerged in the past year, sans both his major label and trademark black ski mask, to offer an expanded take on piano-heavy pop (“Rings on Saturn”). Kid Bloom headlines.

Ric Wilson

Wednesday 28, Emo’s

This proud Chicagoan combines his penchant for groovy, disco-laced hip-hop with activist beliefs on 2023 extended play CLUSTERFUNK. Why infuse messaging on topics such as mass incarceration and police brutality into the dance-floor-primed collaboration with producers Chromeo and A-Trak? He answers on “I’m Not a Leader I’m a Mouthpiece”: “I stopped tweeting tweets and put it on beats/ Because n****s only listen when they movin’ they feet.” Fellow Chicago natives DRAMA close.

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