The Austin Chronicle

Austin’s Crucial Concerts for the Week

Jackie Venson, Grace Sorensen, Monte Warden, and many more

By Carys Anderson, Derek Udensi, Michael Toland, Laiken Neumann, Abby Johnston, Cat McCarrey, Raoul Hernandez, Genevieve Wood, and Doug Freeman, May 17, 2024, Music

Monte Warden & the Dangerous Few Album Release

Thursday 16, Parker Jazz Club

Austin’s beloved Monte Warden and the Dangerous Few have been holding down a monthly Thursday night slot at Parker Jazz Club for at least a couple of years at this point. Continuing to hone their rootsy Great American Songbook style of original tunes, the group brings it all home on second album Jackpot!, dedicated to the club that gave them a home. Warden and company will be signing copies of the self-released LP at Waterloo Records, which has racked up plenty of sales of his projects over the decades. The Friday signing follows the already sold-out release show at Parker.   – Michael Toland

Slater, Floats

Friday 17, The Ballroom

A member of the Vada Vada collective (the Garden, Enjoy, Puzzle), Southern California’s Slater might look like a long-lost Shears brother, but the alt-pop purveyor draws a sonic line. Inspiration from early Aughts’ pop and R&B asserts itself through Slater’s modern drum and bass beats, crafting a glossy Frutiger Aero soundscape. His bubbly blend of rap and warped whines carry the 3OH!3 torch, but he holds a definitive flair for genre experimentation. (See: reggae-flittered “Liminal Space Within a Puka Shell Necklace.”) San Antonio-born Floats open with whirring garage pop.   – Laiken Neumann

Kamasi Washington

Friday 17, Empire Garage

Saxophone virtuoso Kamasi Washington lands at Empire Control Room just weeks after the release of Fearless Movement, his third full-length. The Los Angeles jazz artist has referred to this LP, his first since 2018, as his “dance album,” and though project collaborators such as George Clinton and André 3000 won’t be there to help the groove (at least not that we know of), Empire will be a fitting venue for the jazz great to embrace a funkier sound.   – Abby Johnston

Good Pollution: Cassette Release Show and Yard Sale

Friday 17, Museum of Human Achievement

Everyone’s favorite experimental comedy show/rock band/salsa brand has their sights set on the “fresh fertile lands of Philadelphia,” but they’re not quite outta Bat City yet. First, Good Pollution – composed of Clara Blackstone and Perpetual Oyster – hosts a cassette release party featuring the musical talents of Dromez, Attic Ted, and Cookie Tongue (New Orleans) as well as embarrassment artist Andie Flores. But of course, it wouldn’t be a real goodbye without a yard sale, where you can pick through Good Pollution’s belongings to help fund their ferrying off to the East Coast.   – James Scott

Shrek Fest 2024

Saturday 18, Swan Dive

Do you yearn to be left alone in your swamp? Are you layered like an onion? Then join in a celebration for everyone’s favorite green creature, and I’m not talking Kermit here. He’s an ogre, he’s an All-Star, he’s Shrek. Celebrate this not-so-jolly green giant on the 18th anniversary of Shrek 2’s release with a fairy-tale party courtesy of Swan Dive. Rock out with Grandma Mousey, Allepakcok, and Shrek cover band THE EDDIE MURPHY EXPERIENCE. Be there or be a silly donkey.   – Cat McCarrey

Grace Sorensen

Sunday 19, Parish

Niche festivaling teased out a massive Hispanic demographic for international all-stars. Meanwhile, locally, that scene sprang up during the pandemic. Round Rock Latina Grace Sorensen debuted at ACL Fest last October, turning the tiny BMI stage into a micro Coachella with chic simmering pop. A smoky dusky delivery for latest rubdown “Superstars,” plus crib beats, electro keyboards, and percussive melodies on a stream of singles dating back to last June (heated hard drives “Madness, Madness” and “Miss Majesty”), convince. “I listened to a lot of Donny Hathaway and Marvin Gaye, a lot of blues, and so much classic rock,” she told us in a cover story that month.   – Raoul Hernandez

Nick Garza’s Songwriter Get Along

Sunday 19, Devil’s Backbone Tavern, Fischer

Since Robyn and John Ludwick took over the nearly century-old Devil’s Backbone Tavern in 2018, they’ve created a haven for fellow songwriters at the Fischer outpost about an hour southwest of Austin. Case in point: Nick Garza’s Songwriter Get Along, which convenes some of Central Texas’ best artists for a Sunday night song swap. For the third installment, Garza gathers another powerhouse lineup with Jonathan Terrell, Kelley Mickwee, Paige Plaisance, and Garrett T. Capps, along with acoustic offerings from Chaparelle’s Jesse Woods, Harvest Thieves’ Cory Reinisch, and Rattlesnake Milk’s Lou Lewis. Expect surprise invites up onstage from the crowd as well.   – Doug Freeman

Emo Muzingo

Tuesday 21, Bouldin Acres

I’m not very good at general trivia – save for the music round, when my otherwise useless ability to recognize songs after a few seconds really comes through. If you, too, love a game of Name That Tune, head to South Lamar beer garden Bouldin Acres for Muzingo, or musical bingo. This week, it’s emo night, so brush up on your Paramore and Panic! beforehand ... maybe even study some Rites of Spring and Sunny Day, if you really want to cover all your bases. Prizes are included, of course.   – Carys Anderson

Middle Sattre Live Score

Wednesday 22, Hole in the Wall

Holding down Hole in the Wall’s monthly residency, Middle Sattre curates Wednesday night showcases as innovative as their chamber pop-informed folk. The eightpiece operates less as a rigidly defined band than as a free-form cooperative, continuing to broaden their instrumental lexicon on fantastic February release Tendencies. Earlier shows included a contemporary classical takeover, while their upcoming set features a live film score to 1927 sci-fi cult classic Metropolis. Consider the cinema-inspired event a quadruple-header: E. Artifact and Mockjaw contribute jazz-twinged breaths of life, while Thomas Echols maneuvers between classical guitar and futuristic synth sound with equal expertise.   – Genevieve Wood

Hot Luck Fest

Thursday 23 - Sunday 26, Mohawk & the Coral Snake

Aaron Franklin’s annual food and music festival brings the heat (sorry) this year – sonically, that is. Among the locals slated to wind down days of eats at Mohawk and the Coral Snake: punks Subpar Snatch and dreamy singer-songwriter Tearjerk, playing Thursday; post-hardcore quartet Porcelain, one-man pop band Mobley, and Jackie Venson’s electronic side project Jackie the Robot, playing Friday; and garage/glam rockers the Ugly Beats and A Giant Dog, wrapping up Saturday/Sunday. Another surprising, non-Austin get: Saturday act the Mummies, the Eighties/Nineties lo-fi masterminds who unceremoniously started gigging again in the 2000s.   – Carys Anderson

Music Notes

by Derek Udensi

KUTX Rock the Park

Friday 17, Mueller Lake Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Promqueen performs at the latest edition of KUTX’s always free, family-friendly event. She’s had quite the month so far: KUTX named the Vietnamese American rapper/singer its May Artist of the Month and the recently announced 2024 ACL Fest lineup revealed she’ll perform during the festival’s first weekend.

Brendan Walter

Saturday 18, Saxon Pub

Walter (“Sunflower”), a Dallas-raised country singer who moved to Austin last year to pursue music full time, bids Austin farewell at his most-frequented venue before relocating to Nashville. He currently counts over 110K followers on TikTok.

Sean Paul

Sunday 19, Stubb’s

Does “just gimme the light and pass the droooooo” ring a bell? What about “need a lot of trees up in my head”? Recite a quote off any single from Paul’s 2002 album, Dutty Rock, and there’s a good chance someone will join in. The Jamaican dancehall/reggae artist last released an album – Scorcha – in 2022. Colombian artist Farina supports.

Fredo Bang

Thursday 23, Empire Control Room

This melodic Baton Rouge rapper started 2024 by releasing his second studio album Yes, I’m Sad. Kuttem Reese co-headlines.

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