Old 97's

Most Messed Up (ATO)

Texas Platters

Old 97's

Most Messed Up (ATO)

Rhett Miller exhales prior to jumping into the raison d'etre for Most Messed Up, opener "Longer Than You've Been Alive." In that breath, one can almost hear his Dallas fab four's double decade of recording. Then he leaps into the song's tumbling verses, underlined by, "We've been doing this longer than you've been alive/ Twenty good years, what about 25?" This 10th studio disc splays a far cry from both volumes of 2010/11 opus The Grand Theatre, because past its christening Dylanesque by way of Todd Snider – Miller echoing Tom Petty's hard consonants – it's all lyrically downhill across party anthems ("Wasted"), fuck songs ("Let's Get Drunk & Get It On"), drug shrugs ("The Disconnect") and antidotes ("Intervention"), plus a token "This Is the Ballad." Sixties pop licks and fills embellish upstrokes destined for upped rpms live ("Nashville"), but the best riff turns on acoustic strummer "Wheels Off."

**.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 Old 97's
Texas Platters
Old 97’s
Graveyard Whistling (Record Review)

Greg Beets, May 19, 2017

Texas Platters
Old 97's
Hitchhike to Rhome (Record Review)

Jim Caligiuri, Jan. 23, 2015

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead
X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Daniel Johnston
Chicago 2017 (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 21, 2020

More by Raoul Hernandez
New Austin Music Worth Your Bandwidth This Week
New Austin Music Worth Your Bandwidth This Week
Ben Kweller hits the Continental Club stage, Threadgill's auctions some history, and more

Aug. 7, 2020

Creem: America’s Only Rock & Roll Magazine
The true story of the underdog music rag that lived (and died) rock

Aug. 7, 2020

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Old 97's

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

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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