Day Party Crawl
Lunch With Chicken Ranch RecordsCheapo Discs, Thursday, March 13
No, Gov. Spitzer, it wasn't that kind of lunch. Though Austin's Chicken Ranch Records may have nicked its moniker from Texas' most infamous bawdy house, Thursday's high-noon indie-rock in-store was on the up-and-up. We Were the States kicked things off with a block of deftly constructed post-punk that defied knee-jerk comparison. The Murfreesboro, Tenn., quartet drew heavily on its new debut LP, Believe the Thieves, opening with "Till Morning Comes." The song's clever "whah-ah-ah" refrain, bellowed enthusiastically by the whole band, immediately signaled it was time to stop thumbing through old Herbie Mann vinyl. The uninitiated were undoubtedly flummoxed when they said, "Thank you, We Were the States," after just one song, but "Red Lion" and "Up Your Sleeve" cinched the sale. Atlanta's Tiger! Tiger! followed with a heady swirl of 1960s garage noise and lo-fi indie pop that found its footing in snappy selections like "Black Daggers" and fuzz-tone hoedowns like the title track from the also new The Kind of Goodnight. Resistance was futile in the face of guitarist/vocalist Buffi Aguero's sugar-n-sneer routine. Then the Clutters showed up to make 2pm feel like closing time with scorching beer-light sing-alongs like "You'll Never Be Famous." The Nashville trio hit hard and left a mark.