The Beaumonts and Hickoids
This Is Austin, and All the World's a Dressing Room (Saustex)
Reviewed by Kevin Curtin, Fri., Jan. 3, 2020
The BeaumontsThis Is Austin
HickoidsAll the World’s a Dressing Room (Saustex)
Troy Wayne Delco knows precisely where his boots touch the ground. Still, throughout the Beaumonts' live album, the singer/guitarist infuriates attendees at Austin's White Horse by pretending he's in San Antonio. In fact, banter precedes each cut. Before the hilarious "Money for Drugs," he lowers into shameless pill pleading: "If there are any doctors in the house tonight – and I'm not talking a fucking anthropologist or something; I mean someone with a prescription pad – please come on up to the stage and help out some cowboys. We're all in pain."
For the local honky-tonk fivesome, fortified by the stately Telecaster licks of nonverbal guitarist Hollywood Steve Vegas, This Is Austin serves as a no-filler greatest hits. Covering all the topics of their uniquely focused schtick – country music trends ("Toby Keith," "Change My Name"), religious oversight ("Burn 'Em Down"), and sex ("Boots") – the Beaumonts might remind some of country satirist Wheeler Walker Jr., except they're funnier and were doing it first.
Speaking of STDs, check out the Hickoids' take on Elvis Presley's "Burning Love." Label mates, tour mates, and musical Eskimo brothers via Cody Richardson of the Beaumonts, the Austin/San Antonio cowpunk OGs' fan-taped live album doubles down with a sweaty, swaggering, sleazed-out cover of Sir Elton's "Bennie & the Jets." The 14-track L.A. concert peaks midset with an exquisite 15-minute version of their live gem "Stop It You're Killing Me," in which you can almost hear Jeff Smith shoving a Shure 58 mic down the front of his jeans.
That's followed by a tender rendition of the late Davy Jones' eternal truck stop scrawl "Driftwood 40-23." And the taunting "Git Back in the Truck" swings more powerfully than on 1989 genre-classic Waltz a Crossdress Texas. As such, All the World's a Dressing Room proves the Hicks still flourish as one of Texas punk's most durable acts.