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Band Of Heathens CD (2008)

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Country, rock, blues and folk from Austin, TX

by on 6/26/2008

Having gravitated to one another’s live sets at Momo’s in Austin, Texas, songwriters Colin Brooks, Gordy Quist and Ed Jurdi (together with bassist Seth Whitney and drummer John Chipman) formed The Band of Heathens and released their 2006 debut as, unsurprisingly, “Live at Momo’s.” More unusually, their follow-up was also a live disc, and it wasn’t until this 2008 release that the quintet settled down to record in a proper studio. Their combination of country, rock and blues has a distinctly southern flavor, venturing towards Southern Rock and stadium-sized energy of John Mellancamp’s heartland singalongs, but remaining rootsy throughout. There are numerous antecedents here, including the bluesy melting pot of Little Feat, the 1970s rock-goes-country Rolling Stones, the eclecticism of Commander Cody and NRBQ, and the rustic sentiments of The Band. ¶ Produced by the legendary Ray Wylie Hubbard, the disc’s eleven songs cover a lot of ground, from multi-part harmony-laden country to electric blues rock. The Southern fried gospel blues of “Unsleeping Eye” nods vigorously to Little Feat, and the mandolin and pump organ (courtesy of Stephen Bruton and Gurf Morlix, respectively) of “Second Line” add a lazy New Orleans drawl. Patty Griffin adds her voice to “Maple Tears” sad story of cross-border broken hearts, and the oil-rigger’s tale, “Nine Steps Down” has an irresistible radio-ready melody. Among the most successful productions are the album’s simplest, such as the gentle arrangement of Ed Jurdi’s love song, “40 Days,” and the salacious backporch blues “Cornbread,” featuring producer Hubbard on slide guitar. ¶ The Band of Heathens mix of blues, rock, country and folk brings to mind the ground-breaking experiments of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, as well as the more commercially-oriented efforts of acts like The Ozark Mountain Daredevils and Eagles. The results neatly provide country music fans a respite from the pop productions of Nashville’s mainstream without resorting to the archness of opposition. [©2008 redtunictroll at hotmail dot com]

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Product Overview


Label City Hall Records
SKU 208079527
UPC 678572959721
UPC 14 00678572959721
Format CD
Release Date 5/20/2008
Author Band Of Heathens
Product Attributes
Artist Band Of Heathens
Music Format Compact Disc

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Country, rock, blues and folk from Austin, TX by on Jun 26, 2008