Fallcore's Incendiary on the Rise of Suburban Hardcore

Photo courtesy of Incendiary
Brendan Garrone, center, and Incendiary will be making their first Texas appearance on Saturday, headlining Day 2 of Fallcore.
Proper hoodie weather has arrived in Houston at last, and that can mean only one thing -- it's time again for Fallcore. For 14 years running now, the two-day festival has served as the city's most essential hardcore throwdown, showcasing the best (and noisiest) bands from the Texas scene and beyond.

This year's fest promises to be no different, with H-Town veterans like Will to Live and Die Young sharing a stage with young local fixtures such as Back to Back and Black Coffee as well as out-of-town acts that include Dallas' Vulgar Display and San Antonio's SnakeWay. With all the whirling fists and gnarly stage dives they're likely to inspire, the middle of the floor at Walters Downtown -- Houston's hardcore home base -- isn't going to be a particularly safe place to be on Friday and Saturday.

There will be 19 bands in all at Fallcore, with a couple of choice bookings at the top of the bill. Headlining Friday night's action will be Hatebreed's Connecticut homies in Death Threat, who haven't played a show in Texas in six years. That's a pretty long time -- almost as long as the following night's headliner has been a band. Long Island's Incendiary, who will cap off the entire, breakdown-filled weekend on Saturday, will be making their very first appearance in the Lone Star State.

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Outdoor Texas Music Festivals: What Not to Do

Photo by Anna Hanks via Flickr
The Great ACL Fest Washout of 2013
Note: this article originally appeared on June 4, 2014.

Free Press Summer Fest dodged a pretty serious bullet this year. When festival officials announced that the grounds around Eleanor Tinsley Park needed to be evacuated around 2 p.m. on the Saturday of the festival, some of us who were there had visions of pandemonium at the exits and the kind of heavy rains that would have had leftover props from Russell Crowe's Noah floating down Buffalo Bayou. But we were spared a direct hit from the weather and while the evacuation spawned a ton of predictable social-media carping, all in all everything worked out OK once everyone (finally) got back into the park.

Indeed, FPSF went on to have a pretty successful weekend, eventually drawing hordes of people, especially Sunday, and officially selling out for the second year in a row. No doubt the FPSF folks in the golf carts and production trailers could have done without the close call, but all the same, this near-miss couldn't help but remind us of a few other outdoor Texas festivals some people would probably rather forget. (Note: why are we re-running it in November? Haven't you already started to feel that familiar FPSF itch yet?)

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The Weirdest Photos of Fun Fun Fun Fest 2014

photos by Marco Torres
The gate to Keeping Austin Weird at Fun Fun Fun Fest 2014

The wrestler named The American Eagle is temporarily knocked out during his match against his opponent named The Great Depression. America wins in the end.

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Love Love Love Fest: The Missed Connections of Fun Fun Fun Fest 2014

Photo by Mike Brooks
The love of your life is in this photo. Maybe. Possibly.
This year Fun Fun Fun Fest had an official Make-Out Spot (you can find it on the festival map). While I never actually saw it with my own two eyes, I'm sure that at least a few people used it if it was there; who among us hasn't seen a couple awkwardly making out at a rock show?

Of course, to make out you need a make-out partner, and not everyone is lucky enough to have a +1 in their life. That doesn't mean that they can't find love at a festival; while some of us go to these things to eat our weight in Twinkies (present company included) and hear some good bands, history shows that when music is in the air, love usually is as well.

Like we did last year, we're here to do the Lord's work and help some of the fine folks of Fun Fun Fun Fest connect with their missed connections. Was there someone you met at the fest you think is looking for you? Maybe they are.

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The Best Things Overheard at Fun Fun Fun Fest 2014 (NSFW)

Photo by Cory Garcia
From a chalkboard that asked, "What does Texas mean to you?"
"Hey do you want a Red Bull?"
"No thanks."
"It has vodka in it."

"Let me know if you're gonna do something stupid so I can record it and post it online for karma"

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The Best & Worst of Fun Fun Fun Fest 2014

Photo by Cory Garcia
Boyfriend can work any stage, even when the stage is a wrestling ring.

New Orleans rapper Boyfriend knows how to command a space, even when that space is a wrestling ring. As she danced, stomped and rolled her way around the space, tossing gifts out in to the audience, occasionally borrowing hats and sunglasses and getting up close to sing to different members of the crowd, I couldn't pull my eyes away from her set.

Her songs are good, though, the good type of repetitive-catchy, but actually seeing her perform -- and the chaos that comes with it -- makes them shine. After the set, I was told it was only a taste of what her shows are like. If you'll excuse me, I'll be kicking myself for missing her set at Fitz last week. CORY GARCIA

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Eight Can't-Miss Acts at For the Community 8

Flier by M. Schoolcraft
The eighth edition of the always free and musically packed For the Community festival runs from Saturday afternoon into early Sunday morning. Once again, promoters Visionary Noise and Houston Free Thinkers have assembled a lineup of artists, poets and musicians representative of our city's diversity.

Last Concert Café and Eastdown Warehouse will host more than three dozen musical acts. It's the second time this year the festival has dropped in the warehouse district and the February edition enjoyed strong attendance. Not to go Frank Billingsley on y'all, but the weather is going to be ridiculously great, so the hope is even more music fans will crowd Nance Street for the day's offerings.

Of those offerings, here are eight promoter Micah Jackson and Rocks Off chose for adventurous listeners or FTC newbs to seek out:

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10 Reasons to Look Forward to Fun Fun Fun Fest Every Year

Photo by Marco Torres
Welcome back, 2012
The Weather
Sure it makes me sound like a curmudgeon, but I hate summer festivals. Oh sure, the music is great, but the heat, good lord the heat. It's just exhausting. Even ACL runs the risk of getting mighty uncomfortable if October decides not to play nice.

By the time November rolls around, though, even the warmest days are pleasant and the cooler days are just an excuse to wear those awesome hoodies you've been keeping in storage.

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¡Viva Monterrey! Exploring Mexico's Pa'l Norte Music Fest

The 2014 Pa'l Norte Music Festival took place in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico over Halloween weekend, with headliners such as Los Tigres Del Norte, Snoop Dogg, Juanes, Foster the People, Molotov and more. Rocks Off's Marco Torres was on hand to capture the highlights.

Photos by Marco Torres
¡Vamos Pa'l Norte!

Natasha and Omar of Vinil Magazine take a selfie with me in the Pa'l Norte media area.

One of the joys of working as a music journalist is befriending people from all over the globe while working music festivals. A few years ago, I met Omar "Mexico" Pasillas (above, center) in Austin during PachangaFest. He is the editor of Vinil Magazine and host of VinilTV, a public access television show in Monterrey.

During ACL 2014, he suggested that I visit his hometown to cover the Pa'l Norte Music Festival, which in its third year of existence is quickly becoming one of the best music festivals in Latin America. Their success can be attributed to the Apodaca Music Group, a booking and management firm whose more than 30 years of history in the Mexican and international music scene serves as a firm base for the festival.

So I packed my camera bag and traveled south for the weekend. This is what I saw:

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The 10 Best Reasons to Visit Voodoo Fest This Weekend

Photos by Jim Bricker (except noted)
This weekend you could be carving pumpkins and handing out candy, or doing something much cooler by jumping in the car and heading to New Orleans for the 16th annual Voodoo Music + Arts Experience. Costumed freaks and music fans alike will be descending on the historic City Park for three days of music and entertainment from the likes of Foo Fighters, Outkast, Skrillex, Arctic Monkeys, Pretty Lights, Slayer, Gogol Bordello, Death From Above 1979 and a whole bunch of other great acts.

If you've never been to New Orleans during Halloween time, you're missing out. The addition of a great festival to take your days away before taking to the city at night is even more reason to head to the Big Easy for a few days of good music, delicious grub and a bit of debauchery thrown in for good measure.

If that isn't enough, here are ten more reasons that should give you that final push out of the door come Halloween morning.

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