Aoki salutes the fans that have made him the highest paid DJ in the world
Monday, December 28
In an era when handsomely paid EDM acts often appear to be doing little more than pushing buttons and tinkering with dials onstage, Steve Aoki spins the “superstar DJ” role into a hyperactive art form that involves spewing Champagne, throwing cakes and crowd-surfing aboard an inflatable raft. With musical roots in Southern California’s punk scene, Aoki (one of late Olympic wrestler and Benihana founder Rocky Aoki’s six children) launched the indie record label Dim Mak while still in college and steadily evolved from party DJ to the producer, songwriter and recording artist behind 2012’s Grammy-nominated rager Wonderland. The recently married party animal returns to the Alamo City (one of approximately 300 annual gigs) in support of Neon Future, a double album packed with collaborations — from Linkin Park to will.i.am. — and surprisingly bookended by spoken-word interludes from inventor/author/futurist Ray Kurzweil and controversial biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey. $45, 7pm, Cowboys Dancehall, 3030 NE Loop 410, (210) 646-9378
Wha-haahh! It was good listening to you in '98!
Monday, December 28
Better Than Ezra with Hydra Melody
Relive the glory days of Airwalks and Yaga T-shirts with the group that gave us the roommate anthem "Waa-huh, it was goo-ood livin' with ya!" Named to indicate a multi-headed driving force and a multi-dimensional sound, Hydra Melody is a synth-and-keys-heavy alt-rock outfit. $10-$35, 8pm, Aztec Theatre, 201 E. Commerce St., (210) 760-2196
The late, great DJ Bart Koch on the left and DJ Smarty Pants on the right
Monday, December 28
DJ Smarty Pants spins the grooviest groovers from the canon of rock 'n' roll most Mondays, when his duties with David Lynch-muse and bodacious chanteuse Chrysta Bell hasn't whisked him away to a far-off, exotic locale. If "Hotline Bling," "Drunk in Love" or whichever jock Pitchfork has their visage firmly planted in doesn't blow up your skirt and you wanna strap on those sharp shoes and cut that rug to ribbons, get your fanny to The Mix for gems from the garage. Free, 11pm, The Mix, 2423 N. St. Mary's St., (210) 725-1313
Tuesday, December 29
As the runner up for the Best New Band category of the Current's 2015 San Antonio Music Awards, Doral Club occupy that intriguing position of bands that remain under the radar of most inside-the-loop-music-fans. This, however, is an excellent opportunity to see if all the hype is true, and to scope out the readers' choice for Best DIY Venue. With Sine Cura and Ego Rhythm. $3, 8pm, Imagine Books & Records, 8373 Culebra Road, (210) 236-7668
Tuesday and Wednesday, December 29 and 30
There are one-man bands, and there is Shakey Graves. The Austin-based bluesman (born Alejandro Rose-García) is the complete package: subtle, tasteful fingerpicking, solid percussion using both feet, a whisky-soaked voice, amazing stage presence and two albums with enough good songs to prove he’s a lot more than just a novelty act. His performance at 2013’s South by Southwest was one of the festivals’ most buzzed about events with even The New York Times’ socks being knocked off. His reputation as a live act is so strong that the dude even has his own official Austin holiday (February 9). $20, 9:30pm, Gruene Hall, 1281 Gruene Road, (830) 606-1281
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