Posts Tagged ‘southern rock

18
Jun
10

The Mother Truckers (Austin, TX)

I stumbled upon this band by pure accident one night while recollecting my college days  and the bands that I loved at the time.  I remembered a band named Protein out of Austin, Texas.  They were a interesting band that sang catchy hard songs about “Lemonade” and “Sitting on the Roof of a Mexican Restaurant”, and other random things.  Of their two albums released, 1997’s Ever Since I Was A Kid and 1999’s Songs About Cowgirls, Cowgirls remains to be one of my all time favorites. Sadly, Protein was a band who’s members (although very  talented) and contribution were simply overlooked; their demise (in my opinion) was simply being among too many bands being released at one time.  Although they had a very short life in band years, they did produce some quality music that you should take the time to discover. 

Of the members of the band, the highlight would be the main vocalist and lead guitar player Josh Zee.  Zee’s talent is reflected in those two albums and really created a unique, fresh, and fun sound of for the band.  Protein was a bit of alternative, a bit of jazz, and Texas blues/rock all rolled up into one.  To my surprise and delight, Zee has started another venture called The Mother Truckers based out of Austin, TX.  Although I have not had a chance to listen to any of their albums, I do like what  I hae heard through their website (www.themothertruckers.com); the songs from their most recent release Van Tour (2010), specifically Break-Up Sex and  Alien Girl are fun, energetic, and really show how much fun Zee’s newest project probably is live.

The Mother Truckers clearly are a culmination of modern country, Texas roadhouse rock, and something all their own.  Clearly there is a lot of passion, energy, and forethought put into the arrangements of their songs.  The band appears to have kicked off a tour this summer and it looksl like most is focused on Texas and California cities.  I do hope that the band swings by the East Coast and performs a date in HiFi’s city of Albany, NY. 

Here are the dates reflected on their website as of 6/17/2010:

Jun 26, 2010 9:00 PM Antone’s Night Club Austin, TX
 i 
OFFICIAL CD RELEASE PARTY!!
Jul 15, 2010 10:00 PM The Continental Club Houston Houston, TX  
Jul 16, 2010 9:00 PM The Aardvark Fort Worth, TX  
Jul 17, 2010 11:00 PM The Boiler Room Denton, TX  
Jul 18, 2010 9:00 PM Scout Bar San Antonio, TX  
Jul 30, 2010 9:00 PM Threadgill’s World Headquarters Austin, TX  
Aug 5, 2010 TBA Rhythm Room Phoenix, AZ  
Aug 11, 2010 TB Harlow’s Sacramento, CA  
Aug 12, 2010 TBA Moe’s Alley Santa Cruz, CA  
Aug 13, 2010 TBA 19 Broadway Fairfax, CA  
Aug 14, 2010 9:00 PM Slims San Francisco, CA  
Aug 15, 2010 9:00 PM McNear’s Mystic Theatre Petaluma, CA  
Aug 18, 2010 TBA Belly Up Tavern Solana Beach, CA  
Aug 28, 2010 11:30 PM The Continental Club Austin Austin, TX  
Sep 13, 2010 TBA AMAGER BIO    
Sep 14, 2010 TBA Fermaten    
Sep 15, 2010 TBA POSTEN    
Sep 16, 2010 TBA Tobakken    
Sep 17, 2010 TBA Kulturhuset Pavillonen
03
May
10

Nashville Pussy – From Hell to Texas (2009)

As I’ve been posting over the past few months and enlightening the masses about newly announced summer tours of the bands we love I’ve left out one in particular that you really should catch if they come to a town near you; the one and only Nashville Pussy. 

Yes, the name does turn heads and especially so when someone walks mid-conversation (as they did in my office) and overhear you saying how much you are really “loving the new Pussy”; slightly awkward to say the least.  However, once you clarify that “Pussy” is a band and that they rock it’s all good.

A friend of mine let me borrow the newest release from Nashville Pussy entitled From Hell to Texas  and as usual, I like it alot.  The album is high energy and pure Southern rock n’ roll; but with the slight twist of raw garage band  that always creates a sound for the band of not too overproduced; more importantly easily replicated on the road.  This band is tight, I’ve seen them warm up for Reverend Horton Heat several times and it’s never a dull show, never!

The opening song Speed Machine is a great opener with plenty of energy and blistering guitar that gets your foot stomping; the signature Pussy sound starts right out of the gate.  The second song From Hell to Texas is fun and very Motorhead-esque; fast paced and gritty.  Songs like Drunk Driving Man and Lazy Jesus are fun and energetic, they mix up the album at the right times so that the songs don’t all seem to rely on the same recipe, although I’m so High brings us back down to the classic Pussy sound we know and love.  

Songs like Ain’t Your Business, Dead Men  Can’t Get Drunk, and Late Great USA are fun but after a while I found myself pressing the skip button to regain my interest in the album.  Luckily, the Pray For The Devil brings the album back to life, but then a nose dive occurs with song Why, Why, Why; this sounds like a bad cover of Once Bitten Twice Shy (yuck!); this song will cause you to shake your head in disbelief since it just is so bad.  In my humble opinion, it is just not a song that fits this album on any level; although I’m sure it’s a fun song to sing along to at a show.  The album ends with songs Stone Cold Down; this is a solid song to end the album with and gains some redemption for the band, but there are some dead spots in this album that are real stinkers, sorry Nashville Pussy.

To the bands credit, Nashville Pussy is much better live than on a plastic disc.  Their live shows are pure energy and they get the crowd involved so this is not a band that one should overlook.  The album is not a dud, but as with most albums you will find those songs that appeal to you and those that do not; please do not take my opinion as gospel.  The album is worth at least a few listens and I’m sure it will not take you long for their sound to grow on you, Pussy’s version of Southern rock is fun and easy learn to love.  Not to mention that if you are a guy, the lead guitarist Ruyter Cuys is rather fun too look at playing in her black or red satin bra; and hell, she can really play really well too!

Right now Nashville Pussy’s tour is limited to only the West Coast but I’m hoping they will make a trip to the Northeast sometime this summer or fall.  Do yourself a favor and go see these guys, they are a fun show and worth the ticket price.

Nashville Pussy’s From Hell to Texas gets 3.5 out of 5 stars.

22
Apr
10

The Hatters – Madcap Adventures of the Avocado Overlord (1994)

Once again I’ve felt compelled to enlighten readers about a band that you most likely have never had heard and as a result is a simple low down dirty shame. 

Although one reason you may not have heard of these guys is due to their first album taking the award for “Worst named album in history” the aptly entitled The Mad Cap Adventures of The Avocado Overlord (1995), the album name and album cover were (and still are) simply unappealing and completely failed to hit the target audience that this band would have appealed.  The only reason I was able to discover these guys was due to a friend who worked as a college DJ at SUNY Plattsburgh and pushed their CD my way begging me to give it a listen.  Honestly, I would have scoffed at listening or buying this album if using the proverbial “judging the book by the cover”.  

However, thanks to my friend this truly has remained one of my favorite albums.   In turn,  I’ve turned many an audiophile into a fan as well.   You should be able to find this album for about $3 used these days, trust me you won’t regret your purchase.

The album begins with the song Sacrifice, a soulful song that establishes a deep groove and does a very good job introducing the bands sound.  It is the perfect opener and preps the listener for the next song Bring That Wagon Round.  Wagon is a mellow song that has a nice bass line that compliments the piano along with Adam Hirsch’s vocals.  All three compliment each other and the song just flows just the way it should; the listener can tell right away that these guys work well together and clearly everything seems to be just happening naturally. Dig The Ribbit was the one song that seemed to gain the most amount of noteriety for the band, the bass line and the mellow Hammond B-3 organ just create a groove that makes you shake your head to while enjoying every note, again, the lyrics are well  placed and the song is just absolute fun to groove along with every note.  Madness of The Green takes us back to slower pace, with mellow and smooth tempos and an organ in the background that just keeps things together.  Found With Your Drawers Down brings us right back to where Dig The Ribbit left off and gets the listener back into album at full momentum once again, the bridge in the song is a clever mix of classic jam band, background party noise, and even a twist of some Latin influenced rhythms, the guitars at the end take us out with a good Allman Brothers feeling.  The middle of the album features songs like I Could Be The One, For Tomorrow, and Bad Side; although good in their own right they are more filler for the album, but nothing specifically mind-blowing persae.

The album picks up with the song Empty Handed, this is all Allman Brothers influenced.  The beginning does a great job of setting the tone slowly and builds into a great song.  You Ain’t Comin’ Home brings us back into a mellow setting with some steely guitar and slow soulful vocals once again by Hirsch, the song eventually picks up tempo and really establishes this album as solid, well written, and a keeper.

The highlight at the end of the end of the album is Sip Of Your Wine with featured guest cameo by Blues Travelers’ John Popper.  The song is fun and goes on for awhile, I’m sure this was awesome to see live and I’m sure they took it in many directions when they toured together.

The Hatters were a culmination of both Allman Brother’s and Black Crowes influenced southern rhythm and blues.  They would be catagorized with bands like Blues Traveler, The Spin Doctors, Government Mule, The Tragically Hip, and the long forgotten and short-lived band Xanax 25 (where are you guys?).  Avocado Overlord is a solid album that is one of those rarities where nearly every song is a winner, the album is still as fresh today as it was when released over 15 years ago.  The second album You Will Be You is decent as well however, Avocado Overlord is just such a fun and clever album.

If you would like to learn more about The Hatters there is a nice piece by band member Billy Jay Stien (keyboards) that reflects his thoughts and feelings about this incredible ride with the band, click here.

If you catch word of a reunion, please contact us here at HiFi Central!




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