The Band of Heathens

Thursday

SXSW Records

The Band of Heathens

Top Hat Crown & the Clapmaster's Son (BOH)

The watercolor cover art of the Band of Heathens' latest album pools into a pill-popping fantasia that looks like a Carney-era Leon Russell wet dream. And rightfully so, as Clapmaster finds the local song collective having shed most traces of its folky timidity and completely giving into a Rolling Thunder Revue meets Mad Dogs & Englishmen-styled romp. War-funk meets Little Feat-roll. Opener "Medicine Man" lays out the LP's permeating roots-psych groove, sliding into the harmonica-and-piano slink of "Should Have Known." "The Other Broadway" mines gospel soul to the biting blues of N'orleans ode "Hurricane," but it's the sharp jab of guitar funk on "Enough" and cataclysmic runs of the epic jam "I Ain't Running" (racing atop a twisted riff of "Spill the Wine") that capture the Austin quintet at its best. Ed Jurdi, Colin Brooks, and Gordy Quist are all seasoning songwriters, and together they paint a vivid canvas. (Thu., 8pm, Antone's)

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