New mAcdonald

Ex-Timbuk3 man Pat Macdonald plays the Mean-Eyed Cat and Continental this weekend.

Maybe the road to PurgAtory Hill has been long, but few are better equipped to make the trip than Pat Macdonald. Make that pat mAcdonald, an effective way of driving grammarists crazy or maybe just a reminder to put the damn A in his last name without mentioning “The Future’s So Bright.”

But that’s mAcdonald for ya. Do it his way or don’t do it. With two shows this weekend supporting his latest CD PurgAtory Hill, the stompbox, harmonica, and a wicked, gimlet-eyed view of the world are unquestionably his friend. Longtime fans – and not just those who’ve followed him since Timbuk3 created their Eighties anthem – know what to expect: hellfire philosophy and merciless rhythms. Teamed with sidewoman melanie jane on vocals (“Shut Up”), keyboard, and percussion, mAcdonald leads us willingly to the place where no one gets out unscathed.

“Check your lipstick and heart at the door” he advises on opening track “Sintro,” but that’s the last mercy shown on this trip through reinvented Delta blues by way of the dark highway to hell and tar-barrel bass thump. mAcdonald’s own songs (“The Little Things,” “Blues of Sin/Babylove,” “Drinkin’ or Drivin’”) are squeezed so tightly that cannily chosen covers from P.J. Harvey (“Meet Za Monster”) to Mississippi-born traditionals (“Rollin’ and Tumblin’) to vintage Iggy Pop (“Wanna Be Your Dog”) are almost indistinguishable from his brimstone oeuvre. “How much longer do I wait for this frog in my throat to turn to a prince?” he demands on “Count to Ten.” Long enough to make a princess sit pretty on a toadstool in the swamps.

pat mAcdonald brings his new band (also named Purgatory Hill) to the Mean-Eyed Cat Saturday evening, 9-11pm, and to the Continental Sunday night at 8pm. Heybale follows, in case you sold your soul to mAcdonald and want to dance about it.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Pat MacDonald
All You Need Is...
All You Need Is...
...a little Saturday night L-O-V-E

Margaret Moser, Feb. 12, 2009

More Timbuk3
The Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades
The Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades
Barbara Kooyman leverages Timbuk 3 for

Margaret Moser, Feb. 23, 2007

More by Margaret Moser
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?

March 3, 2017

Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016


Pat Macdonald, Timbuk3, Purgatory Hill

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle