Potent Americana and jamming Texas psychedelia
Songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard, a skilled Texas talent-spotter, produced the debut studio album of this Austin band, and Jim Fusilli of the Wall Street Journal wrote that The Band of Heathens played the best set he heard in five nights at the SXSW festival in Austin. We believe it—their set at the Ann Arbor Folk Festival a few years back was a sensation! The Band of Heathens is one of the great live acts on the Americana circuit right now, and their studio recordings, fine as they are, don't do them justice. They mix a good greasy Texas sound with lyrics that stick with you and a handful of jams to get things really cooking. Their latest, "Duende," features songs on such topics as marijuana, poet Sylvia Plath, how beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and Coca-Cola have shaped civilization ("A History of the World in Six Glasses"). This is a band of true Texas originals, at the height of their powers. Special guest is Chicago Farmer, of whom Todd Snider has this to say: "I love Chicago Farmer’s singing and playing and songs, but it’s the intention behind the whole of his work that moves me to consider him the genuine heir to Arlo Guthrie or Ramblin’ Jack Elliott. He knows the shell game that goes on under folk music … which is sacred to me. Chicago Farmer is my brother; if you like me, you’ll love him."