So Venue 222 ( formerly Aces Lounge ) is the new wolf in sheep's clothing. Like most of Austins dis-establishments on 6th, it is quite un-assuming on the outside, but then you step in the door and BAM!!! that is a helluva fuckin stage. I mean this thing is H U G E. With the potential 3 levels of bad that this club can produce, it will be very good. With the upstairs balcony that looks right over the stage (nice V.I.P. lounge if I must say), this will prove to be a very fun, very hot spot to catch some good music.
Mirage ( http://www.myspace.com/miragebigsoul ) was onstage when I walked in. Although his look reminded me of one particular cube of ice, the sound was definitely not. Smooth and forceful at the same time, letting the rhythm push you just hard enough to make you move your feet and feel it in your head. This guy will provide many entertaining and dance floor crowded nights for those clubs in Austin that will let him throw it down. If you like Hip-Hop/Rap and enjoy moving to the sounds look for him and do it.
MC Overlord ( http://overlordmusic.com/ ) was on the stage next and although I have used my words to pimp him out as much as I possibly can, it was the words of two visiting guys from Idaho that captured the night of an Overlord performance, "Dude, This guy is fucking bad ass!" "I have never heard anything like this." "There is NOBODY in Idaho that is like this, he is amazing!"
Yup, so as I am standing there, I hear these exclamations and introduce myself and talk for a few minutes. I take the opportunity to welcome them to Austin, and point out/introduce the myriad of other Austin musicians that are in the house checking out the show. "The support we show each other has no comparison anywhere else in the world" a smiling Cody Rathmell, from Aimless Gun, announced to the two strangers from potato land. Introductions were made to Overlord and two more people from outside of our pearly gates in Austin were introduced to what it is like to live in the Live Music Capital of the World.
Neckbone ( http://urbanianentertainment.com/ ) was a new experience for me. Like hitting Mary Jane for the first time. Holding it deep in your bosom you feel the burn and then smile. YES this was NECKBONE. With so many vocals onstage you lost track, the different voices in your head and you are not even insane. The powerful drums, a scathing lead guitar and the bass player/keyboardist who, like a champ and a frighteningly bad ass musician, tuned his instrument by ear! That's right , theses guys came to move this house like it was every ones business. They are the soundtrack to a life filled with politics, good times, and a diverse background and history that wont go away.
On a cold COLD ass night at The Saxon Pub ( http://www.thesaxonpub.com/ )I got to witness the birth of something wonderful and amazing.
The High Horses ( http://www.ryanharkrider.com/ ) is a phenomenal incarnation of 5 great Austin musicians (Matt Slagel - Bass, David Fralin - Keys and Vox, Ryan Harkrider - Guitar and Vox, Ryan James - Skins, Guitar and Vox, and Cale Richardson - Guitar and Vox) from several different bands. Now they have combined their strengths and talent and this is the result....Wonder Twins UNITE!!!!
Looks like they are gonna have a residency at Saxon, for now on Wednesday nights, and hopefully will pick up something bigger and longer term than that. I was told by one particular fixture in Austin music that it was 'country'...NOT A CHANCE! No twangy twangy here, nobodys dog died or girlfriend leaving you for your tractor! This is just another opportunity for you to go out and experience more of Austins live music and the great talent that resides here. Sad for the WORLD that this is the heartbeat of Texas and you have to come here to experience it, all of these guys deserve the world to know and hear, but ultimately it is always worth your trip to experience something new, great, wonderful, different and altogether Austin!