The Austin Chronicle

ACL Live Shots

Reviewed by Greg Beets, October 3, 2008, Music

White Denim

Sunday, Sept. 28, Zilker Park

Despite a daunting slot opposite the Raconteurs and Gnarls Barkley, White Denim unleashed electric testimony on Sunday afternoon as to why they're Austin's band of the moment. Empowered but not encumbered by the spastic time changes of math rock, the trio's songs skitter about with unpredictable aplomb, somehow landing feet first every time. But White Denim goes way beyond post-punk start/stop prowess, condensing the titanic, blues-based immolations of the Who and Led Zeppelin into hyper-caffeinated, two-minute groundbursts. Vocalist/guitarist James Petralli channeled the soulful spirit of MC5 vocalist Rob Tyner on "All You Really Have to Do" and "Paint Silver Gold," bringing a heady dose of universal magnetism to a style of music that tends to self-relegate. The respectable roar of approval that followed the set ensured dozens of newly minted fans.

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