Concerts almost as hot as the Texas heat.
For fans of the Dallas music scene, you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone more dialed-in than the writers at Central Track. Every month, its editor and founder Pete Freedman shares his picks for the city’s can’t-miss live shows and music-related events to attend. Up this month…
FRIDAY, JULY 19
Luna Luna at Deep Ellum Art Company
Back in February, Luna Luna straight cleaned up at our inaugural Central Track Music Honors event, taking home top honors in the Best Group, Best New Act and Best Indie Rock Act categories, and even winning the Best EP award for its debut For Lovers Only EP, too. The acclaim was all well-deserved: Since first bursting onto the local scene in late 2017, this five-piece Oak Cliff outfit has been dazzling area audiences with its New Wave-infused (but decidedly modern) take on indie rock, regularly drawing big crowds to its shows —and oftentimes larger ones than the touring headliners they’re so often tapped to support.
At this Friday night offering, though, Luna Luna will be the unquestioned stars of the show as its members celebrate the release of their sophomore EP. Throw on some fresh duds, dial up an Uber and make your way to the eastern edge of Deep Ellum to join the band‘s fervent following on the dance floor at this one. With any luck, the night will end in the same kind of prom-like celebratory group dance that its “80’s Tune” music video did. And, hey, maybe someone will even host an after-party at their parents’ lake house once things are all said and done? Let’s hope! Tickets: $15 – $20.
SATURDAY, JULY 20
Chomsky at Double Wide
Back around the turn of the millennium here in North Texas, the Denton-sprung indie rock outfit Chomsky was the cock of the area rock walk, earning regular airplay on KDGE 102.1-FM The Edge and headlining the Deep Ellum venues of its pick. But, man, time sure flies, doesn’t it? This year, the band’s biggest hit, “00:15:00,” turns 18 years old, and its 1999 breakthrough LP, A Few Possible Selections for the Soundtrack of Your Life, will celebrate two full decades of existence.
At this Double Wide-set bash, Chomsky will relive those glory days of yesteryear by specifically honoring the 20-year anniversary of that sophomore LP (while no doubt throwing into its setlist a few additional selections from your past life, too). The band’s Dallas contemporaries in Bobgoblin, who were signed to MCA Records for a stretch there in the ‘90s, also appear on this throwback bill. Hire a babysitter, and maybe pre-load the fridge with Gatorades for Sunday morning in advance. You might not be able to go as hard as you used to these days, but this music still does. Tickets: $10
SUNDAY, JULY 21
The Church’s 25th Anniversary at Lizard Lounge
Dust off your finest black attire, head off to the iconic Dallas danceteria The Lizard Lounge and join Dallas’ goth set as it closes out this weekend here, just as it has every other Sunday night for the last 25 years.
At this offering, DJs Virus and Will Sloan will be holding things down and playing the moodiest tracks in their collections while celebrating a full quarter-century of affording Dallas misfits a judgment-free zone to mindlessly dance their worries away. If you’re among the first 300 in the door, you’ll be award a free T-shirt commemorating this milestone celebration. Wear it with pride, perhaps even at your family’s Thanksgiving dinner this fall. Yeah, your mom will absolutely hate it, but maybe this is what will finally convince her that, all these years later, your adoration for all things goth isn’t “just a phase.” Tickets: $10 (of $15 for those under 21).
FRIDAY, JULY 26, AND SATURDAY, JULY 27
WoodScott at Three Links and Easy Slider
The iconic Woodstock festival turns 50 this year, which we suppose is only marginally more thrilling than the fact that its offspring Woodstock ’94 and Woodstock ’99 respectively turn 25 and 20 this year.
Such is the mindset behind this two-day Deep Ellum throwndown, anyway, which has tapped 17 area acts to perform tribute sets to bands that played any one of those three festivals. Hosted across two stages— one at the punk rock venue Three Links and another at the neighboring Easy Slider bar and restaurant—this event’s name is a nod to Three Links owner Scott Beggs, who also turns 50 this year and put this concept together.
While it probably won’t be as big a shitshow as its highly mythologized inspirations were, it’s all part of the fun if it turns out to be, right? The not-to-miss sets among this weekend’s offering are Fort Worth “divorce-pop” outfit covering Collective Soul on Friday and the Dallas-based RZA collaborator Stone Mecca doing his best Jimi Hendrix impression on Saturday. Included among the other acts set to be aped? Green Day, The Who, Insane Clown Posse, Limp Bizkit, Alanis Morissette and Janis Joplin.
While we can’t promise that any of them will be great, we can promise that they’ll definitely be there. It’s like the ghost of Jim Morrison told Wayne and Garth in Wayne’s World 2 as they were preparing to throw their own fest, Waynestock: If you book them, they will come. Tickets: $10 per day.
SATURDAY, JULY 27
Jason Lytle & Tim DeLaughter at Good Records
After a 14-year run on Lower Greenville, the revered Dallas record shop Good Records moved out to a new home in East Dallas earlier this year. And, just as its last location so endeared itself to area music fans and touring acts alike by making sure to establish itself as a comfortable (if unlikely) home for live music performance, ownership is applying the same model to its latest setting. This show is the latest proof of that, as Good hosts a free intimate piano performance from Grandaddy frontman Jason Lytle here.
Interestingly, this show is the only Texas stop on the celebrated indie rocker’s current tour, which comes in support of his August-due solo LP, NYLONANDJUNO. Space will be limited for this one — a fact exacerbated due to Good co-owner Tim DeLaughter (Polyphonic Spree, Tripping Daisy) opening up the affair with an acoustic solo set of his own — but you can guarantee your admission by pre-ordering the album from Good in advance. From where we’re sitting, it sounds like a pretty neat and fair way for you to support one of Dallas’ most iconic all-time record shops. A “good” deal, if you will. Tickets: Free.