The Hideout Theatre & Coffeehouse
"...Beginning in 2003 and over the course of five full-lengths beginning two years later, Dayton's Erika Wennerstrom shepherded the Heartless Bastards, who relocated from Ohio to Austin in 2007, through mountainous peaks of titanium rock, her mighty vocals surging to Seventies classic rock proportions. Following 2015's Restless Ones, the quartet's second for Partisan after three LPs for Fat Possum – the latter imprint famously nudged by the Black Keys' Dan Auerbach after a show Wennerstrom recalls as "two drunk rednecks and him" – the Bastards called a hiatus, which here allows the frontwoman a full range of creative uplift...."
"...The words sail across the intersection of Red River and Seventh, as Erika Wennerstrom's walking one way and a really excited woman is walking the other way with a friend. Over the din of a late night Free Week crowd comes another declaration...."
"...Erika Wennerstrom is still processing exactly what happened in the Amazon. She tries to express revelations the ayahuasca retreat opened for her, but it comes out in broken pieces as she attempts to hold back tears..."
"...Charlie Sexton and Erika Wennerstrom..."
"...Burnside. Yes, Erika Wennerstrom sings the blues..."
"...Guitars galore for contributing artists like Jason Isbell, Charlie Sexton, and Erika Wennerstrom...."
"...Perhaps most impressive was the way Austin’s own held its own. Whiskey Sisters stormed “You Wreck Me,” Ian McLagan whooped up the Wilburys’ “Handle with Care,” and Heartless Bastards howler Erika Wennerstrom, who told the crowd she got her band name from the trivia question, “What is the name of Tom Petty’s backing band?,” had so much fun playing “Yer So Bad” and “I Need to Know” that the show then needed Jessica Lea Mayfield’s seductive crawl through “Breakdown” just to gather its legs...."
"...For Erika Wennerstrom, 34, possessor of Austin's Heartless Bastards, the dissolution of a nine-year partnership provided the impetus for self-discernment that eventually became 2009's The Mountain for Fat Possum Records and now Arrow (Partisan)...."
"...From Fleetwood Mac's Rumours to its indie rock equivalent, the Go-Betweens' 16 Lovers Lane (and anything by Rilo Kiley), inter-band affairs have made for some of the greatest albums of all time. Enter Erika Wennerstrom, right, singer, guitarist, and songwriter for Ohio garage-blues steamroller Heartless Bastards (not to be confused with James McMurtry's backing band), who has recently sought refuge in Austin following the demise of her 10-year relationship with bassist Mike Lamping..."
"...For Erika Wennerstrom of Heartless Bastards, bartending got her through the first decade of her music career in Ohio, where the local fourpiece began as a trio...."
"...Liz Lambert admits she's no singer, so the local entrepreneur elected instead to "mouth the words loudly" in the all-star chorus line – Amy Cook, Shawn Colvin, Heartless Bastards' Erika Wennerstrom, and Friday Night Lights' Dana Wheeler – performing Patty Griffin's stunning "Mary" last Friday in the parking lot of the Hotel San José. It proved an only-in-Austin moment in which local musicians rallied on short notice for a deserving cause with memorable results, in this case raising $35,000 for wildfire relief..."
"...The unpretentious and efficient 10-track banger built upon the strength of his previous 6 Shots EP, with an increased moodiness, real-life aspirations, and heavy trap drums. – Kahron Spearman Erika Wennerstrom..."
"...Dixie Chicks for a new Austin, the Trishas anchor a fairer gender powwow with harmonies straight out of the sovereign triumvirate of Linda Ronstadt, Dolly Parton, and Emmylou Harris. Now add on Austin's ageless country consort of precious decades, Kelly Willis, Janis Joplin boom echo Erika Wennerstrom of the rock hard Heartless Bastards, the Go-Go's garage gusto of Austin firelight Kathy Valentine and her Bluebonnets, local Thievery Corporation dervish Loulou (Ghelichkhani), and a six-string cutting contest between equally Joplin presence-come-shredder Carolyn Wonderland and long-tressed, next generation, mile-wide-smiling stinger Jackie Venson...."
"...Erika Wennerstrom (1/30/09)..."
"...Erika Wennerstrom's early Heartless Bastards trio of the mid-Aughties suffered the same fate: Lead singer/shredder and bassist break up, creative partnership dissolves...."
"...Heartless Bastards' third album, 2009's The Mountain, opened with the stunning rumble and quake of the title track, a breakout in every sense as Erika Wennerstrom's singing torched a statement of rising defiance and ferocity. Arrow, its follow-up, leads similarly with the epic, six-minute build of "Marathon," an equally if not even more significant evolution for the local quartet, now augmented with second guitarist Mark Nathan to bolster the frontwoman's six-string leadership..."
"...The psychedelic blues overload of Restless Ones opener "Wind Up Bird" immediately sets the band's fifth LP on a new path. Readily apparent is the fact that frontwoman Erika Wennerstrom's songwriting has reached another peak..."
"...Interband breakups always make for inspired recordings. The Heartless Bastards' third album and first since guitarist/vocalist Erika Wennerstrom split with longtime boyfriend/bassist Mike Lamping and relocated to Austin, The Mountain proves no exception..."
"...There were a number of names in the crowd Tuesday night, but the one that stuck out to me was Erika Wennerstrom, the singer for Heartless Bastards. She sings like Ellis, or vice versa, and all things considered, they both boast this choral ring that plays out more like an actual instrument than vocal chords vibrating...."