Joe Pug

Thursday

SXSW Records

Joe Pug

Messenger (Lightning Rod)

Troubadours tabbed as the next Dylan number by the generations now, yet 25-year-old Joe Pug, based out of Chicago, should make even the most sample-happy listener take note. Considering the title of this full-length debut, it follows that Pug is a man with something to say. With a touch of vintage R.E.M. on the title track, Pug pulls the deft trick of playing unseen listener to a female folksinger. Things drag on "Not So Sure," exposing Pug's limited vocal range, but the overall Messenger here is grounded in narrative passion rather than with notions of a peaceful, easy feeling. Another standout is latter-day protest "Bury Me Far (From My Uniform)," while Pug sounds like Iron & Wine doing John Prine as he gets his wordplay on with "Unsophisticated Heart." This sophisticated writer will only improve as he steps free of his influences. (Thu., 12mid, St. David's Bethell Hall.)

***

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. Sign up for our South-by-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters/ for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest Tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

READ MORE
More Joe Pug
To Have and Have Not
To Have and Have Not
Joe Pug navigates troubadour truths

Neph Basedow, May 1, 2015

Joe Pug Review
Joe Pug Review
Windfall (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, May 1, 2015

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Lomelda
Thx (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, Oct. 20, 2017

Texas Platters
Chris Fullerton
Epilepsy Blues (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, Sept. 1, 2017

More by Dan Oko
Spotlight: Richard Thompson
Spotlight: Richard Thompson
10pm, Antone's

March 15, 2013

Ballroom Dancing
SXSW Keynote: Dave Grohl
SXSW panel reviews

March 15, 2013

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Joe Pug

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)