Culture / Entertainment

The Most Interesting Movie Comedy of the Year, a Criminally Underrated Band and the World Cup’s Crazy Finish

The Best Things to Do in Houston This Weekend — the Guru’s Picks

BY // 07.13.18

Editor’s Note: Houston’s weekends are packed full of events, but how many of them are truly worthy of your time? PaperCity’s own Weekend Guru Matthew Ramirez cuts through the clutter to give you the best options in this weekly series.

Deep Cuts

Deep Cuts are probably my favorite Houston band, because they remind me of the late 2000s indie rock stars (Smith Westerns, Girls, Ariel Pink) but with the pop, slightly funky, almost R&B-inspired harmonies and grooves that are hallmarks of this decade’s most acclaimed indie rock (Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Rhye, etc…). Deep Cuts is finally releasing their long-awaited EP, Slip Off in the Dark, after teasing its release since 2017.

It’s a brisk five-song mix of their soulful, jazzy indie crossed with the relaxing, atmospheric, nostalgic vibes of chillwave, and it deserves the ears of a national audience. Slip Off in the Dark is of a piece with other Houston artists who are releasing really good music this summer: The Suffers‘ full-length, Everything Here, which drops today, the latest from Wild Moccasins, which came out last week, and Pearl Crush’s Coax Me Out EP from June.

The Slip Off in the Dark release show is Friday, July 13, at the East End’s Satellite Bar, with doors opening at 7 pm. George Clanton, Brandon Ares and Houston’s Wrestlers open. Tickets are just $12.

Echo and the Bunnymen/Violent Femmes

Of course, Deep Cuts owe a bit to the ’80s new wave band Echo and the Bunnymen, perhaps best known for their “The Killing Moon” song which opens 2001 cult hit Donnie Darko. Echo and the Bunnymen sprung from the same fertile late ’70s Manchester scene as many other bands, but never quite broke all the way through in the States, which was a shame because I prefer their cool, airy, sparkling synth pop to the sour faced new wave that surfaced in that scene’s wake.

Echo and the Bunnymen are set to release a new album, The Stars, The Oceans, and the Moon this fall. Fellow alt-rock veterans Violent Femmes will open, a band best known for their eccentric “Blister in the Sun,” a song which everyone who picks up a guitar can play (and whose 1983 self-titled debut is a stone cold classic).

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The show gets underway this Saturday, July 14, at Revention Music Center. Doors open at 7 pm, with tickets starting at $20.

A Worthy Double Feature

1994’s Crooklyn is often overlooked in reviewing Spike Lee‘s long and winding career, which is unfortunate, because the moody, pseudo-autobiographical story about a boy and his family growing up in Brooklyn is a mellow, understated ’90s classic and one of Lee’s most nuanced films. Presented in conjunction with Project Row Houses with an introduction by curator Ryan Dennis, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston shows Lee’s thoughtful film Saturday at 7 pm. Adult tickets are $9.

For me, it’s been a slow year for movies. That’s about to change. Legendary Oakland rapper Boots Riley — the most visible member of The Coup, which has long been one of rap’s most undersung groups (rest in peace Pam the Funkstress) — directs Sorry to Bother You, a sci-fi tinged comedy set in the Bay Area starring Lakeith Stanfield, the charismatic breakout star of 2017’s Get Out and both seasons of Donald Glover’s Atlanta.

Riley, a hip-hop veteran, promises to bring the same wit, intelligence, and biting humor he’s known for as the leader of the Coup. Sorry to Bother You is opening to rave reviews and currently sits with a 95 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s the kind of movie that the less you know about it before seeing it, the better.

It opened Friday and is playing everywhere. (Keep your eyes open for next week’s Blindspotting, another insightful film that takes place in Oakland.)

World Cup Fever

The World Cup reaches its conclusion this weekend. It’s a showdown between traditional power France and lovable underdog Croatia on Sunday morning. While there will be watch parties all over Houston, you’ll catch us at Pitch 25, the warehouse district’s massive new bar founded by Houston Dynamo hero Brian Ching.

A beer garden that is neither pretentious or corny, Pitch 25 has become a go-to for the World Cup with its relaxed, inviting atmosphere, giant selection of beers, and the fun novelty of an actual pitch inside the building. It’s our new favorite place to go in EaDo.

The World Cup final is this Sunday, July 15, at 10 am.

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