Reviewed by Darcie Stevens, Fri., Sept. 30, 2005
Zilker Park, Sept. 24
It's a tall order to follow a perfect song like "The Rat." The Walkmen's latest album, Bows & Arrows, provided an angst-ridden soundtrack for anyone who's ever been walked on or ignored, and the aforementioned single has become an unlikely sing-along to countless fans. One-upping their Parish show the night before, the New York fivepiece threw down a gauntlet of new songs, many of which showcased the veracity of "The Rat." Opening animal kingdom newbie "The Cheetah" ripped Hamilton Leithauser's vocal chords, while "Danny's at the Wedding Again" held down the drunken screw-you at which the Walkmen excel. As Leithauser lurched backward to allow his yowls to travel, the veins in his neck warned of impending explosions, and they arrived quickly. Bows & Arrows favorite "Little House of Savages" was followed by a new punk rocker that added tempo to the Walkmen's set and demonstrated that drummer Matt Barrick is a force to be reckoned with. After driving 27 hours from Beaumont during the evacuation, the Walkmen garnered enough frustration to put on a show exactly as it should be: with fervor, anxiety, and balls.