Changing the Course of Empire

Local favorite emerges from the commercial doldrums

Homegrown rappers Bassx--who relocated to Brooklyn in early 1996--have called it quits, citing the usual creative differences and boredom with the routine of making music together. The group, which formed in Denton in 1992, was a perennial favorite in Dallas Observer Music Awards voting. The group put out two cassette releases before issuing their album Thick in 1995. All members--Ban Ra, Chill, Ari Hoenig, Homage, and Snika--will remain in NYC...Fast, aggressive rock with more than a touch of punk relentlessness could be the soundtrack to heaven or hell, depending on your tastes, but if you're in the former camp you should check out Super Sport 396. The band has a two-song demo floating around and can be caught this Friday, February 6...Paul Levatino, drummer for Big Twin Evo, reports that the band is starting work on an album that should be out by April; catch them at the Curtain Club Thursday, February 19...Jazz fans should check out guitarist John Pizzarelli, who will be playing at the Addison Sambuca this Sunday, February 8--a pretty good combination of intimate venue and big-name act...

Hank Thompson and the Brazos Valley Boys, Dale Watson, Lisa Layne, and fashion victim Marty Stuart will host "The Honky-Tonk Jubilee" on Saturday, April 4, at the Bronco Bowl. The show will benefit the Assistance League of Dallas...Ranger Randall's Texas Music Connection has announced the first of a regular quarterly throwdown to be called--not surprisingly--TMC Quarterly. The event, to be held at the Sons of Hermann Hall the weekend of Friday, March 6, will feature the Austin Lounge Lizards, the Ex-Husbands, the Rank Outsiders, Dale Watson, Colin Boyd, Peter Keane, and Darden Smith. Tickets are $25 now, and go up to $30 on February 24...Captain Audio announces that Brandon Curtis, formerly the bassist for UFOFU, has joined the band...

Street Beat is Siamese, if you please. Street Beat is Siamese, if you don't please. Both these seemingly divergent natures are brought together in one elegant whole at Matt_Weitz@dallasobserver.com.

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