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Rhett Miller and Sarah Jaffe, Octopus Project, Missile, and more.

Weekender: Dallas Area Concerts for November 11-13

FRIDAY 

Missile/Diamond Age/Blackstone Rangers (El Sibil): Two solid and sonically adventurous openers are the highlights of this random show at this occasional venue. It would be surprising if the debut of Missile’s new video — due to take place this evening — displays any sort of departure from a presentation that implies either an attempt to offer proof that the group members are direct descendants of Gene Vincent, or the rival body-searching gang from Stand By Me. That being said, the production values on a Missile video are unusually high when compared to most other local products. Oh, and the track is called “Pray for Me,” not to be confused with this song, also called “Pray for Me.”

Sphynx/Sunward/Cowboy Indian Bear (Club Dada): So much can be gleaned from a band’s choice of covers. Do they take themselves very seriously? Is their taste interesting outside of their own music? Or sometimes in spite of it? Covers can be everything from a sarcastic weapon to mock other artists, or a completely sincere tribute. Then there are cover versions that have so many factors working at once, it’s hard to tell where the musicians stand. Take Cowboy Indian Bear’s version of The Outfield’s “Your Love.” It’s subdued to the point where one could make the argument that it’s completely tongue-and-cheek. But the melody is intact and the track seems labored-over. Occasionally I’ll inadvertently make a band or singer angry because I question the reasons behind a particular cover selection. My guess is that if CIB addresses this matter, it will be only to say “Yes, we love that Outfield song.”

SATURDAY

AFTV/Vulgar Fashion/Image Boosters/Ascites/Night Shadez/Richard Ramirez & Sean Matzus (1119 1/2 N. Bishop): The unusually broad way in which this show is presented (“A Night of Art and Music”), is misleading. Certainly those two things will be featured, and the musical lineup is one of the best of the weekend, since it includes a keenly-balanced mix of beat enthusiasts (AFTV, Vulgar Fashion) and likely musical chaos (Ascites, and Richard Ramirez, but probably just about anyone on this bill). It just seems a little suspiciously plain from a crowd I’ve come to know to be one of the most consistently creative presenters of event.

The art portion of the show features local and visiting artists such as David Price, Darcy Neal, and Nina Harp.

Also, this being a big fashion weekend in Dallas, make sure to either catch Richard Ramirez’s live set, or explore his self-described “avant garde fashion” which he shows in Houston and sells in extremely limited editions online, under the name Richard Saenz. His sometimes burned, boiled, or unfinished clothing can also be found in shops as far as away as Latvia and Japan. Ramirez is equally innovative with his approach to music, and put Houston on the map for extreme experimental sounds over two decades ago; long before you heard such noise blasting from giant festival-sized speakers at family-friendly events.

NSP Annual Christmas Mixer with New Science Projects/Spooky Folk/Tony Ferraro and the Satans of Soft Rock/Emil Rapstine (J&J’s Pizza): In what is perhaps the most unlikely Christmas album since Dylan’s 2009 release, Christmas in the Heart, local horror-folk band New Science Projects are actually putting out their own holiday-themed EP. Entitled simply Xmas Time, the EP thankfully does not include a cover of Vince Guaraldi’s “Christmas Time is Here,” and I made damn sure that such a blasphemy hadn’t taken place as soon as I came across news of this online.

I do have to take issue with a Christmas-themed party thrown this prematurely however. If a corporation like Nordstrom can wait until the day after Thanksgiving to start “decking the halls,” then why can’t New Science Projects wait as well? Come on, guys. We’re just a little over a month into the first Fiscal Quarter. You know “he” sees you when you’re sleeping, right? Even if you draw a stream of Christmas lights horrifically coming out of his eyes like a mischievous six year old purposely botching a holiday-themed art assignment? Santa still sees you. Shameful.

ChameleonsVox/Black Swan Lane/Rescue Mission/Anthony Social/Keith P (Trees): You won’t have to twist the arms of any Chameleons UK fans for this considering it includes the all-important lead singer and bassist Mark Burgess, as well as longtime drummer, John Lever, but I have to take exception to one tiny part of the group’s current bio:

…arguably the most widely influential guitar band ever to come out of Manchester England.

All the respect in the world for the Chameleons and I’m sure this tour will do it for the diehards. But about that sentence. I know you used the word “arguably” and I’m just a silly American, but are you sure about that?

Octopus Project/Analog Rebellion (The Kessler): This show was listed in some places but not others, but it appears that it’s definitely happening.By all accounts, The Octopus Project’s live show only grows more over-the-top with each passing year, much to the joy of their fans. Any act that can tour with the presentationally ambitious Man or Astroman? has to really hold their own in that regard.

Rhett Miller/Sarah Jaffe/The O’s (Granada Theater): Three big acts triple-headline this benefit, which is to raise awareness for cystic fibrosis. We should have a giveaway on FrontRow at some point today.

 SUNDAY

Lost Generation (Arcade Bar): The lineup for this is often posted the day before, but it’s never been bad, so there’s that.

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