Arts & Culture

Lone Star Sounds: New music from the Rocket Summer

Bryce Avary of the Rocket Summer
Bryce Avary of the Rocket Summer

Fort Worth-born singer-songwriter Bryce Avary, better known to most as the mind behind the Rocket Summer, shakes up his sleek sound in a profound way on his new album, Zoetic.

The 11-track album, the Rocket Summer’s sixth full-length overall, is Avary’s first release in four years, following 2012’s Life Will Write the Words. From Zoetic’s opening moments, Avary is intent on warping and manipulating the polished power-pop that has been his hallmark for the better part of his nearly two-decade career.

From the aggressive, splintered sound of UNI through to the rap-inflected Get Over It and White Fireworks, Avary displays a refreshing willingness to embrace 21st century pop music in all of its complexity.

Complacency can be lethal, particularly for an artist staring down 20 years of making music, but Avary doesn’t shy away from reinventing himself, and bringing listeners along for the ride.

The Rocket Summer will celebrate Zoetic’s release, with support from Farro, Saturday at Dallas’ Prophet Bar.


The Roomsounds, ‘Elm St.’

A band, at any stage of its career, could hardly do much better for a vote of confidence than having the owner of Muscle Shoals’ legendary FAME Studios extend an invitation to record there. That’s exactly what happened to Dallas foursome The Roomsounds, when FAME owner Rodney Hall connected with the band after happening to hear its 2012 self-titled debut.

Elm St., so named for the artistically fertile strip of asphalt located in Deep Ellum where the band played its inaugural gig, is rich with the sort of throwback rock ‘n roll that’s much tougher to pull off convincingly than it would seem. The Roomsounds’ Elm St. release party is set for Saturday at Dallas’ Three Links, with support from Somebody’s Darling, Blackfoot Gypsies and Rise and Shine.


The Continuums, ‘Hodgepodge’

Hailing, collectively, from Weatherford and Dallas, the four members of the Continuums — siblings Morgan and Austin Ries, Barrett Boswell and Cameron Goolsby — now hang their hats in Austin, but the sound of the quartet’s debut full-length, Hodgepodge, owes more to its former home than its current home. There’s a distinct undercurrent of vintage rock swagger coursing through these self-produced tracks (Party is aptly titled) while It Takes Love for Living manages to evoke the pathos of a folk-rock ballad without tipping over into sentimentality. Along with Mountain Kid and War Party, The Continuums will mark Hodgepodge’s release Saturday at Lola’s Saloon.


Preston Jones: 817-390-7713, @prestonjones