Lights All Night Returns and Texas Motor Speedway Welcomes A Massive Fest of Its Own.
Big news for Dallas' biggest, baddest fest came down earlier today when Lights All Night announced its return for a sixth straight year. And, just like its earliest incarnations, the upcoming installment of the state's largest electronic music festival return to New Year's Eve as its two-day affair goes down once again at the Dallas Convention Center.
“It has been a few years in the making to get Lights All Night back to its original New Year's Eve roots,” says Scott Osburn, CEO of Dallas-based Highland Concerts. “We've received strong feedback from our fans that they want to ring in the New Year at Lights All Night, and we're thrilled to announce just this.”
While the acts performing at this year's fest won't be announced for a few more weeks, some solid early pricing options have been: $89.99 two-day general admission tickets will go on pre-sale right here starting Thursday, June 4.
Next year, though, there may be a new contender for that “biggest, baddest” title. That's when the upstart NiFi Festival hits Texas Motor Speedway for its second annual offering, which will likely go down around Memorial Day weekend. The fest is a collaboration between event-production company Nitro Fidelity and Speedway Motorsports, which owns TMS and a handful of other racetracks around the country. The North Texas stop for the rotating fest follows this August's three-day run at Kentucky Speedway, which is set to include performances from Green Day, Kings of Leon, Miranda Lambert, Weezer, Spoon and Hank Williams Jr., among others. Organizers say more details will be released on next year's North Texas version as soon as later this month. In the meantime, this bit of information should drop your jaw: Organizers plans on spending some $6.5 million on the talent it's booking to perform for a projected audience of 30,000 attendees.
Other big shows lay ahead as well — including some you won't have to wait a year for, even! On Sunday, June 14, for instance, 97.9-FM The Beat's 11th annual DUB Custom Car Show will once again return to the Dallas Convention Center. Big-name performers at that one include Future, Kevin Gates, Chedda The Connect, Z-Ro, Slim Thug, Paul Wall and Mike Jones, among others. Tickets are currently on sale here.
A bit farther out, Twilite Lounge announced this weekend the acts playing its three-day, second-anniversary festivities. First and foremost, know that the Old 97's will return to the bar's teeny confines for a sure-to-be jam-packed performance on July 4 that will be opened by Brent Best. Meanwhile, American Werewolf Academy and The Naptime Shake will get the ball rolling on the July 3, and Hamell on Trial and Quaker City Night Hawks will cap things off on July 5. Adding to the surefire mayhem is the fact that all three nights will be free-to-attend affairs.
At this point, it's safe to say that North Texas isn't hurting for good bands rolling through town in the coming months. That's a good thing, too, because it'll certainly help make up for the fact that Lana Del Rey, for one, won't be playing here anytime soon. Late last week, Live Nation announced that the singer's May 9 show at Gexa Energy Pavilion, which was postponed due to threat of rain, will not be rescheduled after all. Tickets from that show will be refunded at the point of purchase.
Moving on, here's a few of the week's biggest stories in quick-hit fashion.
• St. Vincent fell off a stack of speakers during her show in Knoxville over the weekend. It was a scary fall, though she later tweeted to her fans that she is, in fact, OK.
• The City of Dallas OK'd spending on a statue of Stevie Ray Vaughan that will be erected in Kiest Park, not far from where the legendary bluesman grew up. A call for artists interested in sculpting the piece will go out sometime next month, they say, with a finalist to be selected by September at the latest.
• Fort Worth's Ornette Coleman is suing former collaborators trumpeter Jordan McLean and drummer Amir Ziv over last year's New Vocabulary LP. The album, which was recorded at Coleman's home in 2009, was never intended for commercial release, says the free-jazz pioneer.
Elsewhere, new recordings featuring local artists were abundant on the Internets this week. Most prominent, perhaps, was the new Surf LP from the Chance the Rapper-affiliated project, Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment. While the album is chock full of heavy-hitting guest features, the band chose not to list any of them in the album's credits. It's an interesting move, we guess, although the info can be found with pretty minimal Google searching. We bring it up, of course, because the lovely Erykah Badu shows up in the second half of a track called “Rememory.” Check it out below, or grab the whole thing for free via iTunes.
Another biggie out today is “Smooth Sailing,” the fourth single from Leon Bridges' forthcoming Columbia debut, Coming Home, which drops on June 23. For what it's worth, Gorilla vs Bear has called it “one of the best jams in Leon Bridges' live arsenal.” See if you agree.
The following week, Radioactivity will drop its sophomore LP, Silent Kill. As such, the band released the album's second single this past week via Billboard. Check out the very Dirtnap-y “I Know” below.
Actually, it was a busy week for members of Radioactivity. Three-fourths of the band also splits time as Grave City, which will also put out a record via Dirtnap later this year. Here's that one.
Then there's this new live EP from 817 synthpunk outfit The Blank-Men, recorded a couple months back at Rubber Gloves in front of “a crowd of nearly dozens.” It features live versions of four songs from the band's debut EP, as well as another handful of new, unreleased jams. Check it out.
Another new LP comes from Bosque Brown, which returns for its fourth incarnation as just Mara Lee Miller and her sister Gina Anne Milligan. Us was produced by longtime band collaborator and sometimes member Jeremy Buller, who also performs on the album, which also features contributions from Daniel Hart, Andy Young, Becki Howard, Channing Hooper and Winston Chapman. Stream/purchase it below.
And, finally, Son of Stan released a new song that marks a pretty big departure for the artist considering how the solo acoustic-style cut all but abandons the Fort Worth Sound he helped pioneer. In any case, it's totes worth giving a whirl, which you can do below, of course.
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