Meat Purveyors

Record review

Texas Platters

Meat Purveyors

Someday Soon Things Will Be Much Worse! (Bloodshot)

It's been nearly a decade since the Meat Purveyors arrived on the Austin music scene full of beer and tequila and with a decidedly different idea of what bluegrass could be. Someday Soon Things Will Be Much Worse! is their fifth album, but those who think they know this rambunctious local quartet are in for a little surprise. You see, they've discovered drums and electricity. Sure, TMP are still mostly an insurgent bluegrass band, but the set-opening honky-tonker, "Burr Under My Saddle," leans more toward Gram Parsons than Ralph Stanley, though they also cover Carter Stanley's "I Got Wise," barreling down the tracks with the wattage turned up past 11. Bill Anderson remains the group's backbone, composing realistic heartbreak like "Don't Be Sorry" and the sarcastically angry "Look On Your Face," and playing guitar with amazing stamina, rhythm, and forearms. As they have in the past, the band attempts Eighties rock anthems with acoustic arrangements, which sometimes works, as on the Human League's "Don't You Want Me," and at other times doesn't (Foreigner's "Hotblooded"). No surprise, there: things couldn't get any worse than Foreigner! (CD release: Friday, July 21, at the Continental Club.)

***

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