Batty Jr.

Wormholes

Texas Platters

Alt-folk quartet Batty Jr. captured its debut long-player at a friend's abode outside of Marfa. Through spoken-word narration by producer Nick Hurt and scene-setting sonics (distant thunder and rolling train whistles), Wormholes welcomes a captive listener under the tin roof of a studio and inducts them as an official member of the Austin crew's off-kilter universe. The choose-your-own-adventure story begins with spaghetti Western instrumental "Sound Check," beckoned forward by founding Wild Child member Sadie Wolfe's haunting, elastic cello. The quartet's traveling circus/orchestra energy then rolls into "Blue," introducing Zeke Jarmon's suave, lackadaisical vocal theatrics. In the style of Todd Rundgren's "Intro" message from Something/Anything?, Hurt drops in for a playful disclaimer on tuning. Jazz-trained, Taylor Turner's bluesy bass and former White Denim drummer Jeff Olson's pattering march rounds out the recording's spontaneous live sound, "Move Along" and "Wake Up" proving especially sprightly. The seven tracks are dedicated to recently passed Austin accordion great Ponty Bone, who let Jarmon play washboard in his band as a youngster. Descending from Bone's spunk, Wormholes teems with improvised life and Texan ingenuity.

****

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 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 Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Reddening West
Deltas (Record Review)

Hannah Wisterman, Dec. 14, 2018

Texas Platters
Aaron Stephens
Focus (Record Review)

Clara Wang, Dec. 14, 2018

More by Rachel Rascoe
Texas Platters
Broadcasts Vol. 26
Broadcasts Vol. 26 (Record Review)

Nov. 30, 2018

Texas Platters
Jana Horn
Go On / Move Your Body (Record Review)

Nov. 23, 2018

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Batty Jr.

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