Mother nature doesn't have time for your springtime shows.
True to form for this time of year, the bipolar nature of Houston weather went full manic over the last seven days, bringing several torrential downpours that wreaked havoc on concert-goers. On Tuesday, the weather led to a cancelled MGMT lawn show at White Oak Music Hall, but the the Brooklyn band made up for it by throwing a free dance party inside. Meanwhile, the Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band show at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion was postponed for three hours that night to let the rain and lightning pass through the area.
Thankfully, the forecast calls for clearer skies this week but have those umbrellas handy just in case.
CultureMap's best, biggest, and most noteworthy shows of the week are as follows:
The Right Stuff: New Kids on the Block at Toyota Center
Anyone who spent time at the roller rink 30 years ago will be hangin' tough at the Toyota Center this Wednesday night as Donnie, Danny, Jordan, Jonathan, and Joey aka New Kids on the Block bring their Mixtape Tour to town. Sure, NKTOB has the right stuff, but you'll think you're alone now when '80s Tiger Beat heartthrob Tiffany makes an appearance. You'll push it real good to Salt-N-Pepa and say hip-hop hooray to Naughty By Nature. Throw in Debbie Gibson, and this show is something that happens only in my dreams. Seriously though, this line-up is a late-'80s/early-'90s fever dream.
New Kids on the Block perform at Toyota Center, located at 1510 Polk St., on Wednesday, May 15. Tiffany, Naughty by Nature, Salt-N-Pepa, and Debbie Gibson open. Tickets start at $29.95 plus service fees. Doors open at 6 pm.
Dave Matthews Band at Cynthia Woods
Believe it or not, a lot of people like Dave Matthews Band, especially those whose wardrobes consist of a large selection of plaid shirts, cargo shorts, and loafers/sandals. Despite having the gall to name a very good group of musicians after himself, the wannabe Phish bandleader has sold over 30 million albums since starting in the '90s, hitting No. 1 on the Billboard charts seven consecutive times, the first for a rock band. DMB is on the road promoting their latest, Come Tomorrow, (inexplicably) selling out almost everywhere. Tickets are still up for grabs at this one, however.
Dave Matthews Band is at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, located at 2005 Lake Robbins Dr. in The Woodlands, on Friday, May 17. Tickets start at $45.50 plus fees. Gates open at 6:30 pm.
CultureMap recommends: ZZ Top celebrates milestone
If you're a fan of classic rock, ZZ Top headlines one of the strongest line-ups of the year when the local legends celebrate 50 years of kicking ass and taking names as one of the best bands of all time this weekend. And if you're wondering whether these guys still have what it takes to put on a killer show, have no fears, Billy Gibbons, Dusty Hill, and Frank Beard still bring it hard, running through an immense catalog of hits, including "Sharp Dressed Man," "Gimme All Your Lovin'," and "Legs." They'll be joined by the equally great Cheap Trick and Bad Company for a riff-tastic time in The Woodlands.
ZZ Top is at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, located at 2005 Lake Robbins Dr. in The Woodlands, on Saturday, May 18. Cheap Trick and Bad Company are also on the bill. Tickets start at $76 plus fees on the resale market. Gates open at 5 pm.
Steve Aoki: The cake-throwing wunderkind
"Music is everything,” Steve Aoki told CultureMap early in 2018. “Music keeps me young and keeps me relevant. It is a huge priority for me.” Party rocking will be the only priority for the music mogul this weekend when the night-clubbing set lines up next to the red velvet ropes to see one of the biggest DJs in the world at Spire. The cake-throwing, crowd surfing producer always plays a crowd-friendly set of electronic music mixed with the odd alt-rock tune to keep things high energy.
Steve Aoki performs at Spire Nightclub, located at 1720 Main St., on Saturday, May 18. Seb and Wes Walz open. Tickets start at $45. Doors open at 10 pm.
CultureMap show of the week: Ariana Grande at Toyota Center
There's probably no other bigger star — save Beyoncé — in the world right now than Ariana Grande, who bounced back from some huge challenges in her personal and professional life to release the critically and commercially successful Sweetener. That album went straight to No. 1, establishing Grande as a force to be reckoned with on the pop charts and positioning her as the voice of a new generation of smart and savvy music listeners. She'll bring the hits "No Tears Left to Cry," "The Light is Coming," and "God is a Woman" with her to a sure-to-sell-out show at Toyota Center.
Ariana Grande headlines the Toyota Center, located at 1510 Polk St., on Sunday, May 19. Normani and Social House open. Tickets start at $39.95 plus service fees. Doors open at 7 pm.