The Austin Chronicle

SXSW 2013 Records

Reviewed by Thomas Fawcett, March 15, 2013, Music

Hi Rhythm

On the Loose (Fat Possum)

What happens when you kick all the stars out and let the house band rule the roost? If it's 1976 and you're Memphis' Hi Records – home of Southern soul giants Al Green, O.V. Wright, and Ann Peebles – you get a record that sounds like Al Green on acid. Oddly, the eight-track collection doesn't encapsulate the classic Willie Mitchell sound of a thousand Wu-Tang samples. That's part of the mix, of course, as is a heavy dose of Sly Stone-styled funk and an off-kilter country twang. "Purple Raindrops" makes a strong case for most bizarre cut in the Hi catalog, while "You Got Me Comin'" starts up-tempo before crashing into a crescendo and slowing down by half, a precursor to Houston's chopped-and-screwed clique. The vocals are wildly off-key throughout – often to hilarious effect – but the brothers Hodges (Teenie, Leroy, and Charles) and company cook up some serious stank-faced funk and have a damn good time doing it. (8pm, Stage on Sixth Patio)


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