Live Music Roundup: Who to See This Week

Dwight Yoakam

Wednesday, December 28

“Well I’m back again for another night of trying to break free from this sadness that I can’t lay to rest,” Dwight Yoakam croons. “This old honky-tonk sure does feel like home and the music with the laughter seem to soothe my loneliness.” During an era of Nashville focusing on pop-country (are they ever not, though?), Yoakam’s raw lyricism and honky-tonk style weren’t exactly received with open arms from, which is what made him move out to California where he started gaining traction playing his unique sound of country music in rock and punk rock clubs in the late 1970s. With several Grammys, a few top Billboard hits, and countless other awards, Dwight Yoakam is revered as one of the most innovative songwriters of all time, proving once again that marching to the beat of your own drum (or slide guitar) pays off in the end. 7:30pm, $39.75-$199.75, Tobin Center, 100 Auditorium Circle — Chris Conde

The Texases
Wednesday, December 28

With the desire to just play some good ‘ol fashion country tunes and grant permission to two-step unashamed, The Texases, a classic country cover band from San Antonio, want you to throw on those boots and come kick it with a Lonestar, ‘hon. The brainchild of Travis Texas (D.T. Buffkin of D.T. Buffkin), Jerid Texas (Jerid Mooris of El Campo) and members of their own individual bands, the Texases sing your favorite country songs from artists like George Strait, Merle Haggard, Alan Jackson and Garth Brooks, just to name a few. Since Dwight Yoakam is actually playing down the road the same night, the band plans to finish out their set with all Yoakam covers. Fingers crossed Dwight makes an appearance. 9pm, Free, Paper Tiger, 2410 N. St. Mary’s St — CC

The Eric Tessmer Band
Thursday, December 29

Blues and rock ‘n’ roll don’t necessarily need help in the sex appeal department. However, that doesn’t mean Eric Tessmer can’t thrust us into a sensually aural experience with his distorted blues riffing and charming baritone voice. Named after guitar legends Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix, Eric James Tessmer moved to Austin from Wisconsin at 19 where he began to gig at local venues before the tech boom of the late aughts. Armed with a bass guitar player and drummer to form a powerful three piece, the Eric Tessmer Band carries the live blues rock legacy of old Austin with their own brand of soulful psychedelic rock ‘n’ roll blues. 7:30pm, $10-$45, Sam’s Burger Joint, 330 E. Grayson St. — CC

Friday, December 30

If you listened to Mudvayne, Nothingface, and Pantera in high school, then you’re about to lose your fucking shit at this show, bud. With the idea to form a supergroup during the Tattoo the Earth Tour in 2000, Mudvayne vocalist Chad Gray, former Nothingface guitarist Tom Maxwell, bass player Kyle Sanders, guitarist Christian Brady and former Pantera and Damageplan drummer Vinnie Paul birthed their nu-metal devil-baby with the release of their self-titled first album in 2007. Almost ten years later, after going through a few lineup changes (and most likely a shit ton of whiskey), Hellyeah returned this year with the release of Unden!able, which features some archived guitar work from Dimebag Darrell. 8pm, $25, Aztec Theater, 104 N. St. Mary’s St. — CC

Dolphin Dilemma
Friday, December 30

“I like to play music and dance. I care about dolphins. They are real real smart…” With a Facebook bio that will make you “lol” and a seriously dope live show that will bounce you into an evanescent mist of vapor waves and vintage electro drum beats, Dolphin Dilemma aims to convince us to not take life so seriously and to get lost in the magic that is funky electronic music. Equipped with a mini Korg synth and an RC-300 loop station, Zachariah Applebaum, who makes up one third of the heavy-hitting local psychedelic prog-rock band Verisimilitude, pulls us through a soundtrack of 1970s future soundscapes for a party he’s calling “Jungle Boogie,” which will feature three other artists, a cash prize dance contest and discount at the door if you come dressed as your favorite jungle beast. 9pm, $8, Ventura, 1011 Ave. B — CC

Darkness Divided
Friday, December 30

Yes, Christian Metal is still totally a thing. With bands like Zao, Living Sacrifice and Norma Jean paving the way for the genre in the late 90s, aggressive music with faith-based lyrics has somehow nestled quite comfortably next its not-so-Christian counterparts in the metal scene. And with two albums released on the revered hardcore label Victory Records, the San Antonio quartet Darkness Divided really aren’t doing too shabby. With a bazillion kids already in the metalcore game, Darkness Divided set themselves apart from the basic bitches (hair flip emoji) with their technical instrumentation, clever dynamic and time-twisting transitions on their latest, Charcoal Tongue. 1pm, $8-$10, The Korova, 107 E. Martin St. — CC

Pat Green
Friday, December 30

While he may have earned his cred in the beer halls and honky tonks of Texas, country singer-songwriter Pat Green, having ascended to mainstream country stardom and toured with the likes of Kenny Chesney (for cryin’ out loud), isn’t one you’re likely to catch in your local shit-kickin’ dive anytime soon. Unless, of course, you live near Greune Hall, the state’s oldest dancehall and most prestigious place to get Lone Star spilled on your boots. If you’re lucky enough to snag tickets for this special, intimate holiday performance, you’ll witness a successful artist back in his element, an arena-polished sound packed into what basically amounts to a hallowed (and fairly large) wooden shack. And, if you know Green’s brand of red dirt/river party country, you know that’s exactly how it sounds best. $35.00, 7:00pm, Gruene Hall, 1281 Gruene, New Braunfels, (830) 606-1281, — James Courtney

Blue October
Saturday, December 31

Originally formed in Houston in 1995, Blue October grabbed the attention of Kid Rock’s former manager early in their career and eventually signed to Universal Records, launching the band into the deep pools of mainstream rock. While the South Texas boys have a heavy mainstream radio rock sound, traces remain of Americana and even post-rock – that is, along with the kind of heavy production that just goes with the territory of being a huge rock ‘n’ roll band. With numerous releases, countless tours, and a few member changes, Blue October continues to drive forward on the roads of mainstream radio success. 9pm, $49.50, $65, $75, Aztec Theater, 104 N. St. Mary’s St. — CC

click to enlarge Televangelist -
Saturday, December 31

Too emotive, listenable, and broadly-appealing to be math-rock sticklers, and too precise and geeky about their angular sonics to be indie rock darlings, the four dudes in Televangelist seem content to straddle the line. The band’s melodic, progressive rock sound has expanded with each of its three releases, culminating with last year’s excellent LP Wild, Jealous, Youth. This Saturday, before heading out on the road to win glory and spoils unending, Televangelist will celebrate the kick off of a 17-date western tour. It’s a frequent refrain around these parts that bands need to get out on the open road to truly test their mettle—here’s your chance to wish Televangelist well, as they head off to do just that. For a primer on the band’s propulsive music, head on over to $5.00, 7:00pm, Ventura, 1011 Avenue B, (210) 802-6940. — JC

Volcán performing at Imagine Books and Records. - Photo credit: Oscar Moreno
Photo credit: Oscar Moreno
Volcán performing at Imagine Books and Records.
NYE with Volcán
Saturday, December 31

To describe SA thirteen-piece Volcán simply as a talented nueva orqestra Latina hardly prepares you for the band’s explosive, transfixing sound. This deconstructed cumbia/Latin pop group, hot from the get go, dropped its first EP, Ritmo, Cultura, y Amor, back in October, and it’s one of our favorite releases of the year. But, to truly know Volcan, and bear witness to the group’s power to move the body and the mind, you must seek the live experience. And, from where we’re sitting, there’s likely no better time to catch Volcán than on New Year’s Eve, an ideal backdrop for the passion and hope of the young outfit’s music. And, if passion and hope seem to have fled you, on the final night of the year, Volcán should prove a fine soundtrack for any dance into oblivion. $5.00, 8:00pm, Brick at Blue Star, 108 Blue Star, (210) 262-8653, — JC

Jon Pardi
Saturday, December 31

“There’s a growing audience for throwback. People want to hear somebody who really enjoyed the ‘90s country music era and brings that to 2016 country,” Jon Pardi says on his website, plugging his most recent album, California Sunrise. “A lot of this record is bringing an old-school flare back to a mainstream sound, but that gives me my own lane.” Born and raised in California, Pardi, like any respectable country artist trying to make it in the scene, moved to Nashville to chase his ambitions. After a few tours under his belt buckle, including one opening for Alan Jackson, as well as securing a spot on the Capitol Nashville record label, you could definitely say that Mr. Pardi has done pretty good for a California boy chasing honky-tonk dreams. 7pm, $16-$41, Cowboys Dancehall, 3030 NE Loop 410 at I-35 — CC

Mingo Fishtrap
Saturday, December 31

Singer and lead guitarist Roger Blevins has a voice that will make you say, “Damn, this boy’s got soul.” Seriously though, in a day and age of Soundcloud, iTunes, Spotify and basically a billion other music listening platforms, it’s rare you a hear a new voice that brings you back to that curiosity and awe you first experienced in your early music listening days. Mingo Fishtrap, a six piece soul-funk band hailing from Austin Texas, will have you shaking that thang and raising your hands to praise the heavens for blessing you with an opportunity to experience the masterful music layering and dynamic that makes this band a rare Texas gem. With Aaron Stephens, 8:30pm, $20-$90, Sam’s Burger Joint, 330 E. Grayson St — CC
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