Oh New Year's Eve. The alcoholic in us all thinks of you as "amateur's night," all gaudy drunkenness and desperation. Why does it always happen like this? Well, New Year's is inevitably a microcosm of our year past: We always head out with very high expectations and have them crushed with disappointment. We set the bar too high. Or maybe we're just pathetic.
But there is an alternative. Why not just get a little tipsy and check out some music? There are enough options around Dallas this New Year's to make anyone feel good about the prospects for 2015. Here are out suggestions on where to make this happen, starting in 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5...
Spoon 8:30 p.m., at House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., 214-978-2583 or houseofblues.com/dallas, $59.91-$92.49 Spoon is your dad's favorite indie band. He heard them that one time on How I Met Your Mother or whatever. In a world of 31 flavors of esoteric independent music, Austin's Spoon is strictly vanilla bean. But it's a basic flavor that's had 11 years to ferment and refine itself. Maybe I'm mixing metaphors here. Nevertheless, 2014's They Want My Soul exists as a conscious push by the band to embrace the strange directions its genre can allow. It throws in some modulated keyboards, some falsetto and smart songwriting without straying away from the bare-bones setup that remains crucial to the band's identity. A few much-needed risks are taken, and maybe it's about time; Spoon has survived several waves of indie rock fallout and managed to come out unscathed. These seasoned veterans have adapted and developed to the point where they might almost be a different band. Maybe a band named Fork. Matt Wood
New Year's Eve New Orleans Style With David Washburn, 10 p.m., at Twilite Lounge, 2640 Elm St., Free David Washburn, a regular player at Twilite does some fast 3/4 New Orleans style jazz to help you bring the New Year in with style. There's even a free champagne toast at midnight. All this thing is missing is some po boys. HDB
Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights With Nikki Lane and the Texas Gentlemen, and J. Charles & the Trainrobbers, 8 p.m., at Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave., 214-824-9933 or granadatheater.com, $24-$80 It's starting to be somewhat of a tradition that Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights headline the Granada's New Year's Eve show. The blues rock band, fronted by, you guessed it Jonathan Tyler, is such a seasoned act that the show is sure to deliver a great performance and pack the house. Nikki Lane from Nashville and Dallas based southern rock outfit, J. Charles & the Trainrobbers round out the party. HDB
The Rich Girls With Dark Rooms, Sam Lao, ZHORA, 8 pm, Wednesday, at Club Dada, 2720 Elm St., $15-$20 It's a celebration folks. One of the hottest tribute bands in town, The Rich Girls, is front and center on this New Year's Eve bill. The Yacht Rock cover band of Darryl Hall and John Oates may make your dream come true, but it doesn't stop there. The Daniel Hart fronted indie band Dark Rooms, rappin' and singin' Sam Loa, and electro boogie ZHORA are also on the bill. This show's all local everything and is sure to be great. HDB
Panoptikon presents: NYE Masquerade Ball With Lord Byron and Son of Sam, 9 p.m, at Red Light Lounge, at 2911 Main St., $20-$150 Deep Ellum's dance club is throwing a New Year's Eve bash that's advertised as a throw down for goths, industrial, and alternative folks. The playlist holds a bit of credence (Joy Division, Depeche Mode, Crystal Castles, The Knife). Let it be a little on the dark side, but also fun enough to sweat off the mascara wile you're dancing. HDB
John Legend 9 p.m., at WinStar World Casino, 777 Casino Ave., Thackerville, Oklahoma, 1-800-622-6317 or winstarworldcasino.com, $96-$226 You know what, we don't need much on New Year's Eve. We're all just ordinary people, after all. Just some good music by a great vocalist. The ivy league educated crooner who is signed to Kanye's G.O.O.D. Music record label, John Legend, is headlining a show in Oklahoma that surely going to be a delight. He's got a strong voice and a deep repertoire of songs. Legend's gonna class the joint up and make it feel like a upscale Vegas lounge. HDB
Ishi With Def Rain, DJ Depeshi, DJ Aught, Goodnight Ned, 7 p.m., at Trees, 2709 Elm St., 214-741-1122 or treesdallas.com, $15 One of the most eccentric things you can see in Dallas is an Ishi show. I've been to one where seemingly everyone with a date and/or a blood alcohol content above 0.08 was grinding on one another. It's a grand time. The band's electro-funk-folk sound is sure to send a jolt through you and it can turn a wallflower into the most gifted dancer in the soul train line. It's New Year's Eve, what better way to ring in the New Year than this? HDB
Trillwave New Year's Eve Bash With Trailer Swift, Dubble A, CHRS ROZE, Genova, 10 p.m., at Beauty Bar, 1924 North Henderson Avenue, 214-841-9600, Free You've got the opportunity to get a bit trill at Beauty Bar here. Every Wednesday Trailer Swift and Dubble A run the turntables, but thanks to the festivities CHRS ROZE and Genova join the party. This is for the person voted most likely to dance their way into 2015. HDB.
Ten Hands With Mike Dillon, and Jesse Frye, 10 p.m., at Dan's Silverleaf, 103 Industrial St., Denton, TX, $22 Jesse Frye, the Dentonite, has received some attention from The Wall Street Journal and New York Times thanks to her poptimistic singer-songwriter sensibilities. Catch her open up for the long standing band North Texas band Ten Hands (fronted by Paul Slavens) at Dan's to ring in the New Year. HDB
Thrwd New Year's Eve Party With iill, TUNK, Moth Face, White Eyed Witch (Julie McKendrick of Vulgar Fashon), DJ NaturalHiigh, TEEN SLUT (Hesh Q. of HEX CULT), and SHOOKNITE (of Trackmeet), 10 p.m., at Crown & Harp, 1914 Greenville Ave., $10-$15 Thrwd, the niche zine of Dallas is throwing their own New Year's Eve party with the help of another champion of the local scene, Crown and Harp. The bill is diverse with everything from rap to experimental noise rock to some solid DJs. HDB
Soul Funktion With Wanz Dover and M3SA, at 9 p.m., at Off the Record, 2716 Elm. St., Free Wanz Dover on the ones and twos is surely an experience for those with a wider musicial palette than most. Catch him spinning funk, techno, bass music, house and afrobeat. It truly is the Soul Funktion. Go ahead, grab a cocktail and check it out, with M3SA also in the building. HDB
Quaker City Night Hawks With Mothership, The Virgin Wolves, Chucho, 9 p.m., at Three Links, 2704 Elm St., $10-$15 Quaker City Night Hawks are without a doubt one of the most exciting rock bands in all of North Texas. Catch their rootsy Americana laced rock this New Year's Eve at one of Dallas' best rock venues in Three Links. Opening is Mothership, The Virgin Wolves, and Cgucho to round out a pretty exciting bill. HDB
A Punk Rock New Year's Eve With The Unmarked Graves, DEEP Throat, GCD, The Princes of..., Load-In, 8 p.m., at Banter Bistro, 219 W Oak St., Denton, TX, Free The Banter Bistro is the last place you'd expect to throw a punk rock New Year's Eve Party. They always have the folk music and ethereal stuff here during 35 Denton. The hardest it gets is math rock. And its a bistro that sells vegan chili. However, there is a punk show here and it looks pretty awesome with The Unmarked Graves headlining. HDB
New Year's Eve at Double Wide With Nirvana Experience, The Phuss, DJ Colly T, 9 p.m., at Double Wide, 3510 Commerce St., $8.50 The Nirvana Experience is a tribute band for Ray Charles. Just kidding, of course this is a Nirvana cover band. They'll headlint this show with The Phuss, a garage rock band out of Fort Worth and there'll be a DJ by the name of DJ Colly T as well. HDB
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Gas Chamber With Warlock, Aska, Eclipse, Pete and Phil Lee's The Death of Rock and Roll, Rick E. Warden, 7 p.m., at Boiler Room, 2723 Elm St., $10 That's six different rock bands from the DFW area. They're all metal, in a throwback to Black Sabbath or rock n roll, like the sort of stuff any Budweiser drinking and cut off wearing dude is sure to love. HDB
Dancing and Desserts: New Year's Eve With The Singapore Singers 7:30 p.m., at the Kessler Theater, 1230 W Davis St., $25 The Singapore Singers are a pre-swing American dance music band with about 18 members. They're a true throwback to a bygone era of music. It's the pop music from the late 1800 up until the mid 1930s. So, say, if this is your thing, we'll meet you there. We'll be sitting next to Capone. HDB
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