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Evan Johns

Somewhere Over the Skyline (This is a Jellyroll Record)

Reviewed by Tim Stegall, Fri., Jan. 31, 2014

Texas Platters

What the cover would have you believe towers over the Austin skyline of the title is Evan Johns, his shaved head, and an odd-shaped electric guitar. And "odd-shaped" remains the perfect descriptor for what this D.C. export does with American roots music: You can never slot him into any genre straitjacket, be it jazz, garage punk, rockabilly, R&B, country, whatever. He plays them all – usually in the same song! This redneck wildman student of Danny Gatton and Roy Buchanan gets even blurrier in his rockin' across killer tracks like "Guitars and Rock & Roll" and "Souls with Broken Hearts." Then, just to really mess with your head, Johns howls an odd acoustic skip through the Beatles' "All My Loving." Through and through, Evan Johns might be the best damned guitar picker in all of Austin. Now if the world would just catch up already.

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