The Black & White Years
ACL Live Shots
Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Oct. 3, 2008
The Black & White YearsSaturday, Sept. 27, Zilker Park
The Black & White Years' high-noon showdown set Saturday's tone with an electric, jittery jolt. Grinning and bopping about the stage, Scott Butler's frantic vocals were accentuated by his convulsive shudders on "Hysterical Sickness," the local quartet's pulse throbbing like a more melodic version of !!!'s dance punk. "Everyone" grooved with easy lilt, while new tune "Smoke and Mirrors" contorted and trembled behind the band's evolving complex lyrics. It was the anthemic bursts of "My Broken Hand" and "Power to Change" from this year's eponymous debut that most inspired the crowd to move, the former jumping in raggedly shifting rhythms and a pummeling bass line, while the latter raced behind Butler's irresistible pop swagger. Given a half-hour slot, the Black & White Years capitalized on the spotlight, proving as effective on the bigger stage as they are in the clubs.