Faceless Werewolves and Single Frame Ashtray

January 29

This weekend you have two chances to see two very cool rock bands. Single Frame is all '80s synth chords washed over gyroscopic indie fuzz. With Henry Dent on drums, Brendan Reilly on guitar, Jason Schleter on keyboards/bass and all three singing, the music of this Austin band zings, whistles and motors--it's like electronica indie rock. The chanted lyrics pound out a mantra about dorkiness and sex, love and harmony, skaterboys and smart girls. It is infectious pop music that sticks to your teeth like a Butterfinger. I've been rocking their recent disc, Wetheads Come Running, hard for the past three weeks.

The prize for stepping out to these shows, however, is the Faceless Werewolves, a Denton band on the verge of great things. With Kelsey Wickliffe and Baldomero Valdez on guitars and Erika Barton on drums, the music rumbles like storm winds across the West Texas desert, with a heart that is Joe Tex plus T. Rex. All three sing, with Barton and Wickliffe carrying the bulk of the load, and the lyrics are full of rage and desire, joy and laughter. Wickliffe and Valdez syncopate rough but stylish leads and bass lines over Barton's urgent, danceable percussion (she steals riffs from James Brown!). After a year that included a performance at SXSW, a mini-tour of the Midwest and long hours in Austin studios, the trio is about to drop a promotional seven-inch that should launch them toward a European tour.

 
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