The Best Concerts In Houston This Weekend: Patty Griffin, Something Wicked, Maxwell, etc.
Patty Griffin's voice has a tendency to bring on a churchlike hush over any room the she's singing in -- Texas Monthly recently dubbed it the "Patty Griffin effect" -- which could make for an interesting evening Friday, when the Austinite goes up against a ballroom full of Houston's notoriously talkative concert patrons. But if anyone can shut up a Houston crowd, it's her.
Since arriving with arresting 1996 debut Living With Ghosts -- an actual demo that A&M Records released untouched -- the Maine-born Griffin has released several albums that freely mingle rock, pop, folk and gospel (that's 2010's Downtown Church). This year she has greeted fans with both American Kid, inspired by her father's life, and now Silver Bell, a 2000 recording that had been sidelined by record-company consolidations until now, but that contains two songs that gave Griffin plenty of mailbox money when covered by the Dixie Chicks on 2002's Home. CHRIS GRAY
Warehouse Live, October 25
It's tough to sing the blues if you've got nothing to sing about. Annika Chambers did an eight-year hitch in the U.S. Army, including deployments to Iraq and Kosovo. Problem solved. Her life experience helped Chambers win a 2013 Houston Press Music Award for Best Female Vocals, and now she has a calling card to go with it in debut CD Making My Mark, 12 soulfully solid tracks like "Let's Get Down to Business" and "That Feel Good."
She sounded fine indeed opening for Shemeika Copeland at Discovery Green last week, but Friday night in Warehouse's Green Room looks to be Chambers's real coming-out party. CHRIS GRAY
Much can be said about the depth of talent that promoters Nightculture and Disco Donnie Presents have lined up for the second year of Something Wicked, including big names like Adventure Club and Wolfgang Gartner, but for many fans it's going to come down to one name: Tiësto. One of the most popular DJs on the planet, Tiësto was actually supposed to headline last year's festival before he injured his back and had to take time off from touring. As long as he stays healthy, expect one of the biggest - and spookiest - dance parties of the year. CORY GARCIA
Ronny Moorings' Clan of Xymox is one of the most important post-punk electronic acts in history, particularly in the development of the sinister subgenre known as darkwave. Dutchman Moorings founded the clan all the way back in 1981, and their chilly, atmospheric synth-pop eventually caught the ear of influential UK label 4AD, which made them a U.S. underground favorite with the albums Medusa and Twist of Shadows.
In the '90s and into today, Moorings has steadily upped the BPMs while retaining the shadowy allure that makes Xymox the platonic ideal for the Halloween edition of Numbers' monthly macabre soiree Underworld. CHRIS GRAY
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813 St. Emanuel, Houston, TX