ACL Music Fest Saturday Reviews

ACL Music Fest Saturday Reviews

Dave Matthews Band

Big Whiskey & the Groogrux King (RCA)

A saxophone opening anything signals bon temps. Minutelong intro "Grux" teases "Shake Me Like a Monkey," which locks down Big Whiskey & the Groogrux King into a band scrum as thick as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, not to mention the frontman's Anthony Kiedis-like footwork around a monkey puzzle chord tree. One of the group exclaiming, "Yeah," at the song's conclusion ranks right up there with Keith Richards' seal of approval at the close of "Brown Sugar." Successor "Funny the Way It Is" proves no less good at what it does, violinist Boyd Tinsley's brief electric solo perfectly wired to the song's wistful melody and long-distance look. More startling are faint Peter Gabriel overtones to "Lying in the Hands of God." Rejoinder "Why I Am" answers with another rock 'em, sock 'em riff and beat. Even when the album hits its own middle age (the lobotomized "Dive In," "Spaceman"), the flab is completely organic to Big Whiskey. Bad Liver Danny Barnes' gothic banjo on "Alligator Pie" lends its hardcore Cajun tangle a Pentecostal weight. "Time Bomb" bangs more sledgehammer, Matthews delivering an Eddie Vedder-esque emotional expulsion. Whiskey ends on a whimper rather than a bang, the run-time poorly edited, but even then, Big Whiskey quenches big thirst. (8pm, LiveStrong stage.)

***.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
More by Raoul Hernandez
Judas Priest Co-Founder Ian Hill Wields <i>Firepower</i>
Judas Priest Co-Founder Ian Hill Wields Firepower
UK metal gods near the half-century mark

May 23, 2019

ZZ Top, Bad Company, and Cheap Trick Stage a Texas Jam
ZZ Top, Bad Company, and Cheap Trick Stage a Texas Jam
Seventies headliners reanimate the me decade for the ages

May 20, 2019

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Dave Matthews Band

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

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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