The Black & White Years

Thursday

SXSW Platters

The Black & White Years

(Brando)

The Black & White Years hearken back to a simpler time – 1977 to be exact. The local quartet's eponymous debut sounds like an updated version of the Talking Heads, with angular post-punk guitar carefully structured over jittery synths and polyrhythmic beats. Probably not coincidental, then, is the LP's production by former Talking Head keyboardist Jerry Harrison, who ensures that every layer of sound has its own space to breathe, particularly in opener "A Wetter Sea" and Technicolor ballad "My Broken Hand." Like David Byrne, vocalist Scott Butler seethes with cynical, hyperintellectual lyricism, most evident on "Power to Change," which reads like a summation of God, Germs, and Steel. The disco-glam of "Everyone" and closer "Zeroes and Ones" lean closer to Of Montreal circa The Sunlandic Twins, while "Hysterical Sickness" and "Evil Ape" add hot flashes of surf guitar, the latter boasting a psychedelic organ and mariachi trumpets. Everything sounds familiar, but it's rarely ever sounded better. (Thursday, March 13, Maggie Mae's Gibson Room, 9pm.)

***.5

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 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  

READ MORE
SXSW Leaping Online With 2021 Dates
SXSW Leaping Online With 2021 Dates
Confirms conference, film fest, and Edu

Richard Whittaker, Sept. 22, 2020

ATX Television Festival Goes From Small Screen to Big Screen to Small Screen Again
ATX Television Festival Goes From Small Screen to Big Screen to Small Screen Again
How the celebration of TV is leading the way in streaming fests as it becomes ATX TV ... From the Couch!

Richard Whittaker, June 5, 2020

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead
X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Daniel Johnston
Chicago 2017 (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 21, 2020

More by Austin Powell
New Austin Music Worth Your Bandwidth This Week
New Austin Music Worth Your Bandwidth This Week
What we’re playing

July 31, 2020

Record Review: The Young
Record Review: The Young

Aug. 22, 2014

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Black & White YearsThe, SXSW

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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