Music Picks: Say Anything, Peter Bradley Adams and More

Music Picks: Say Anything, Peter Bradley Adams and More
Fallin in Reverse, headliner for the Vans Warped Tour.

Say Anything

With the Front Bottoms, the So So Glos and You Blew It, 7 p.m. Friday, June 13, at Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave., 214-824-9933 or granadatheater.com, $23/$28 at the door

Max Bemis, mastermind of Los Angeles' emo rockers Say Anything, has battled many demons over the years. Whether it's bipolar disorder or drug addiction, Bemis has succeeded in coming back from the brink, and his band's music has remained remarkably consistent. Say Anything's newest effort, Hebrews, is another fine collection of (overly) emotional indie rock. Indeed, Bemis' vocals can be a love-them-or-hate-them proposition as he squeezers every bit of angst from each and every syllable. Thankfully, he's also an excellent songwriter who straddles that fine line between pathos and comedy, as evidenced by new songs such as "Judas Decapitation" and "My Greatest Fear Is Splendid." Darryl Smyers

Reverend Horton Heat
Gene Ambo
Reverend Horton Heat

Peter Bradley Adams

9 p.m. Friday, June 13, at Dan's Silverleaf, 103 Industrial St., Denton, 940-320-2000 or danssilverleaf.com, $10/$13 at the door

If you watched any TV during the early 2000s, you've probably heard the soulful, folksy crooning of Peter Bradley Adams. You may not recognize Adams as a solo artist, but his folk-pop project eastmountainsouth was popular with critics and fans alike. You probably heard the group's single "You Dance" a few times on the radio in 2003, and both eastmountainsouth and Adams have contributed music to popular TV shows like Alias, Smallville and One Tree Hill, along with film work with director Cameron Crowe. As a solo artist, Adams' catchy and comfortable sound has also enjoyed critical acclaim, if less chart popularity than his previous projects. Adams' fifth album, The Mighty Storm, might be his best release yet, full of emotionally charged lyrics and memorable folk-pop arrangements. Dan's Silverleaf is an intimate, comfortable backdrop to enjoy these mellow folk-pop tunes, especially with a few ice-cold PBRs. Amy McCarthy

Reverend Horton Heat

With Scott H. Biram, The American Fuse and Austin Lucas, 7 p.m. Saturday, June 14, at Trees, 2709 Elm St., treesdallas.com, $25-$120

The headlining show of Oliver Peck's Elm Street Tattoo and Music Festival is as Deep Ellum as Deep Ellum can get, as area mainstay Reverend Horton Heat and a cast of well-regarded area rockers take over Trees for a night of rowdy rock, beer and ink. The Rev is coming up on his 30th anniversary of rocking in and around the historic arts district, and much like getting one of Peck's 13 tattoos, seeing the Rev is a Dallas rite of passage. You might as well knock out both on Saturday night. Jaime-Paul Falcon

Vans Warped Tour

11 a.m. Sunday, June 15, at Gexa Energy Pavilion, 1818 1st Ave., 214 421-1111 or gexaenergypavilion.net, $49

Falling in Reverse, the headliner for the Vans Warped Tour, is sort of a Chili's appetizer sampler of the festival's entire lineup: There's a guy with tattoos where his sideburns should be, a guy who looks like Nikki Sixx and a guy with one of those haircuts where the bangs are flat-ironed and the hair in the back explodes outward, like his head is trying to entice a bird couple to settle down and raise a family. (How would a bird ever find its way inside a Hot Topic, let alone have enough time to build a nest in the manager's hair?) In fact, you could just watch Falling in Reverse and experience the entire festival in 40 minutes rather than in eight hours of walking around getting dehydrated and sunburned. Of course, if you're 20 or younger, a day like that totally rules, especially when you've done it while lugging around a bag full of free promotional shit. Any older and you have to tell your friends you're just going for Bad Religion, except that this year, you'd have to say, "I'm just going for Finch." Steve Steward

James Taylor

With His All Star Band, 8 p.m Sunday, June 15, at Verizon Theatre, 1001 Performance Place, Grand Prairie, 972-854-5111 or verizontheatre.com, $69-$90

He might be the self-consumed guy who inspired Carly Simon's monster hit, "You're So Vain," but that's something that probably won't ever be confirmed. What is an irrefutable truth is that James Taylor is a world-renowned musician, songwriter, vocalist and pretty much any other category he could be lumped into. Sure, his easy-listening, post-hippy folk balladry may seem like mindlessly pleasant pap, but in his best work there's depth — and pain — in Taylor's songwriting. He's battled with depression and drug abuse nearly his entire life, and his experiences in psychiatric institutions as well as the suicide of a close friend led him to write the defining song of his career, "Fire and Rain." Named for the whiplash sensations of shock therapy and the cold shower that follows, there's nothing light about it. Paige Skinner

Charlie Hunter

With Scott Amendola and Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 17, at Kessler Theater, 1230 W. Davis St., 214-272-8346 or thekessler.org, $15-$20

Charlie Hunter is one of those musicians who can convincingly play in just about any style with disarming ease. Case in point is Hunter's newest full-length, a collection of EPs covering material from Hank Williams, the Cars, Cole Porter and Duke Ellington. And while it can be cloyingly cute for a jazz player to take on rock and country songs, Hunter's delivery is respectful and, in some cases, authoritative. Hunter is a superb guitarist who understands the player must never exceed the inherent beauty of the song. Instead, it's all about a deft touch and impeccable style. Darryl Smyers

 
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