Crucial Concerts for the Week Ahead: ATX Queer Music Fest, Ovey Fest, New Candys, Bryan Carter and More Local Shows Worth Checking Out – Music
ATX Queer Music Festival
South Pearl Chandelier, Saturday 6
In a year where the Texas Legislature has introduced a litany of anti-LGBTQ+ bills, Pride celebrations have taken on special significance across the country, providing space for respite and centering the beauty of to be queer. A one-day party at Luster Pearl South aims to meet this bill. The first annual ATX Queer Music Fest kicks off Austin’s Pride celebration, a record filled with music, drag shows and the collision of the two. Beyond the two live entertainment stages, there will be an art market presented by Frida Friday ATX focused on women and LGBTQ+, lots of swag and free body paint for good measure.
Los Angeles-based musician and trans activist Ryan Cassata — whose song “Daughter” offered solace to trans people navigating on the way out — stands out for his pop-tinged songwriting impact. Locally, high-octane electronic star p1nkstar and hip-hop supernova Mama Duke represent, as well as Woman Boy artist Caleb De Casper covering Lady Gaga with a special cast including Oh Antonio’s Andrea Ballard and Chief Cleopatra’s Tre Pham. Bonding more than 10 other live bands alongside headlining drag acts, Kara Foxx Paris takes the stage as Alanis Morisette with backing band Alaniz, while Banshee Rose brings queen Selena with the Las Chicas tribute troupe in 512. May we all rejoice.
Ovey Fest: Let’s Celebrate MC Overlord
Come take it live, Friday the 5th
Donnell Robinson, aka MC Overlord – August 5, 1969-Sept. 12, 2018 – Remains ATX’s Run-DMC: Breakthrough. The youngest of six from St. Louis, Missouri, Big Don came here for college and stayed to play hip-hop. In a BLM-contested capital, his raps erased the color line. As a result, he led Sixth Street in the 90s, an OG rapper with all the rock vein of that decade, “King of Rock” too, to quote DMC. 80H Project, a deeply soulful funk and hip-hop unit, features a channeling of its burgeoning big spirit alongside Mumbai screamer Nagavalli, School of Rock House Band, DJ Crash, and more.
Justin Martin, DJ Minx
Concourse Project, Friday 5
As Detroit’s DJ Minx – born Jennifer Witcher – dodged the radar, Motor City’s Movement Festival debutants “discovered” an unsung hero. Those days are over. Minx accumulates in-depth knowledge of over 30 years in the field of high-tech soul (try two years as a host and engineer of Deep Space Radio transmissions, as well as EPs on the labels Planet E, M_nus and his own Women on Wax) with a burst up the prominence of the world stage. With a newfound pride in stepping out after 50, she’s an icon. Dirtybird team stalwart and California bass master Justin Martin guarantees a muscular, melodic set with offerings from his new pandemic label, What to Do.
New sweets, Daiistar
Hotel Vegas, Monday 8
Put on your underwear and dive into a cobalt blue New Wave. Italian quartet New Candys import a mad strain of electric indie rock dripping in European-style dark sunglasses and black leather – very much in vogue. Their album 2021 Vyvyd drips with contemporary post-punk in the same vein as Provoker and Death Bells. Fivepiece Daiistar provides a stellar local analogue for avant-garde Venetians with psychedelic shoegaze and trippy undertones for a teasing debut LP velvet realityis rumored to be released this year and premiered via a 9-minute YouTube session in January.
Jazz at Pride ATX: Bryan Carter
Skybox, Thursday 11
Singer, drummer and songwriter Bryan Carter carries a heavy CV, acting as a musician, bandleader, composer and orchestrator with everyone from Nick Jonas and Jimmy Fallon to sesame street. Don’t forget the multiple Tony Award-nominated musical A strange loop. Equally important, Carter is the brains of Jazz at Pride, a bridge between two communities with a long history of queer innovators like Billy Strayhorn. Joined by a 32-piece orchestra and local guests, while brandishing a new album I believeCarter kicks off Austin Pride with its first iteration of the show outside of Manhattan – in solidarity with a beleaguered community in the Lone Star State.