Marc Ribot/Mark Growden (The Kessler Theater): With a peacock’s worth of hat-feathers — especially in the inconsistent world of session musicians — Marc Ribot simply could have taken it easy and made increasingly digestible music. But he is in a league apart from his peers, due to his continual dalliance with more difficult genres and artists. From John Cage to free jazz, Ribot still clings to the less graspable of expressions, even when compared to the forward-thinking work he has done for the likes of Tom Waits and Elvis Costello. Opener Mark Growden has been with the Kessler since day one, at least of its current incarnation; he played on opening night of the theater’s second act as a venue, which began last year.
Disco Dare (Mable Peabody’s): Denton nightlife seems to be undergoing quite a transitional phase right now, and it’s “wait and see” on several fronts. One of the most interesting developments is Yeah Def’s departure from Hailey’s where he carried the torch (passed on from the revered DJ G) for one of the town’s most oft-referred to events: 80s Night.
So, for now, here’s what we know: Yeah Def has taken his Thursday night talents to Mable Peabody’s for something called “Disco Dare,” wherein Mr. Def promises to “focus on the 80’s,” admitting, however, that that’s “not a limit.” He’s giving himself some chronological, and perhaps stylistic, wiggle room. Mable’s is a pretty fun place to spend an evening, with a built-in and very interesting audience. So, Yeah Def has that going for him. It’s also a more intimate setting than the cavernous Hailey’s big-room. So there’s that too. I have not heard great things about what has replaced 80s Night at Hailey’s, but I will see for myself soon. I wish Mable’s were walkable, as it would have been a heck of an addition to the varied live environs of 35D next March. More info on that soon, too.
Usual Suspect/Ruby Rhod/Shook Nite/Ynfynyt Scroll/Matt Blaque (Simone Lounge): Speaking of Denton’s transitional period, Simone Lounge continues to stake out ground usually claimed by other more well-known spaces, through a mix of diverse booking along with a well-connected party crowd. Thursdays are steady for the venue, and though I’d like to go further, just typing the DJ names above already made me feel about twenty IQ points less intelligent. I know that somewhere, some actually intelligent young men are having a laugh, and I say that because I do know that musicians Clint Butler and Rodrigo Diaz (who is a guest, and also pens the Observer’s “North of the Dial Column”) are involved.
Jacques Renault/Flying Turns (Rio Room): The draw here is definitely Jacques Renault, as he has played all over the world at the sorts of clubs that are constantly referenced in any big dance artist’s CV, and has remixed the likes of Yacht, Poolside, and perhaps even one more act related to relaxing and bodies of water. But that doesn’t mean you should overlook the all-vinyl set by Flying Turns, who hail from Austin, and are named after one of my favorite Crash Course in Science tracks, if not one of my favorite tracks of all-time. That bodes well for the evening, and should provide an excellent warm-up for Renault’s likely smoother set. Just one of another series of big bookings at Rio Room on Thursdays this winter. As is usually the case.
Wild in the Streets (The Amsterdam Bar): First Thursday of every month.
Discipline (Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios): It may lack the musical chairs-like drama of other DJ nights and venues, but Discipline at Rubber Gloves has been plugging away for almost a year now. Hard to believe. The thing about this crew is that it wouldn’t simply be hard to replace them. It would be damned near impossible. Nobody wants to be that nerdy. At least, I hope not.
“Lip Service” with We are Dark Clouds/DJ Trademarx (NSFW Clothing): This looks to be a no-brainer of a pre-party (aren’t they all?), as this new Expo Park fashion retailer makes itself known. Music will be provided by a duo of DJs mostly seen around town at Beauty Bar or Crown and Harp, and who are known for playing a danceable variety of everything from Nervous Records house tracks to PIL. Drinks are free and all clothing is ten percent off. Event is 8-11 pm.
Maleveller/Eagle Claw/Hawk vs Dove/Spacebeach (LaGrange): The first and last time I tried to list an event at LaGrange, the show was inexplicably moved to Bryan Street Tavern. We’ll give this another shot, since the inclusion of the rather non-metal Spacebeach in the company of definite metal act Maleveller is a very interesting pairing.
Centro-matic/Spooky Folk (Club Dada): It’s not sold out right now, but it’s reasonable to assume it could be by day’s end. Centro-matic playing locally shouldn’t necessarily feel like a special event — or that it must be tied to a benefit or awards ceremony — and yet it always does feel that way. They are simply playing Club Dada, and they only have room for a single opener, also from Denton. The group is popular enough to warrant a double-check at the bill, in order to make sure it’s not on someone else’s behalf. That’s certainly not a bad place to be for any act.
Boogie Down with DJ G & Rufus P. Funk (Fallout Lounge): What is a normally attractive evening of “jazz-funk, old school R&B jams,” etc, has “Funky Jingle Bell Edition” as its timely theme this week. Easy there, fellas. You have at least three weeks where you don’t have to feel obligated to play anything seasonal, if at all. Do we really need to kick it off like this?
Doom Siren/Steel Bearing Hand/Guiso/Oust (Queen City Hall): Note: Kill The Client was originally supposed to perform, but backed out due to an unspecified reason. Update: The group will perform as a two-piece.
Love Inks/Blackstone Rangers (Canton Coop): The virtual tons of online press showered onto Austin’s Love Inks makes complete industry sense on many levels. They have a perfectly subdued pop sound and sensibility that makes them easy to like and easy to write about. Perhaps that afforded the band the confidence to cover David Essex’s 1973 hit, “Rock On,” which the group recently premiered on Nylon’s website. At first, I merely thought it was a poorly-named original by the group, and could hardly believe that it was actually a cover. It’s a bold repertoire choice, and my hats off to them for making me wonder aloud whether or not it’s a justified move. Throw in the literal interpretation of the lyric’s James Dean imagery (which might remind one of this famous Dean-worshipping video), and you have a band that has no problem appropriating any and all popular iconography as its own. Why not?
Away from the Numbers (Fallout Lounge): Along with Telegram Sam and DJ Gabe, the prolific blogger from the “Say, Man!…Say“ site will also be on hand. Topics on the site include everything from GG Allin to the aforementioned Jacques Renault, whom the author describes as “Nu-House.” However, a quick fact check reveals the “Say, Man!…Say” site as the main search result. Not saying it’s wrong, just found it funny.
Northern/Breathing Lines/Nick Groesch (Rubber Gloves): Another music and art event split between Rubber Gloves and the neighboring Meme Gallery that will also feature work by visual artists Elizabeth Hurtado, Andie Sterling, and Hunter Wild. The Breathing Lines performance will also be multimedia, so the lines will continually be blurred this evening. Two Notes: Northern is the project of Sleep Whale’s Joel North. Nick Groesch has performed as a member of the Polyphonic Spree, but even I won’t stoop to 2003 levels of cliche by mentioning how spectacularly common that is. It makes sense why the Spree would want the young man’s help. He’s a jazz major and pianist. In other words, not just one of those indie rockers that can “kind of” play keyboard.
Anthony Social/Keith P (Holiday Skatium located at 2920 Carson St. in Haltom City): So the two DJs from Beauty Bar’s “Funeral Party” have decided to have an “adults only,” old-fashioned roller skate party at a skating rink in the Mid-Cities. Oh, and it’s also BYOB. That’s great. Sounds like a fantastic idea…for a spectator. Let me be clear: I thought it would be hilarious to roller skate at a little kid’s birthday party as a grown man not too long ago, and it didn’t exactly go as planned. I was flat on my back and knocked my head against the ground violently within about eight seconds of putting on a pair of skates. By all means, go. But don’t say I didn’t warn you. Event is free. More information here (must be logged into Facebook for link).
Image: Marc Ribot (courtesy photo)