Louisville's My Morning Jacket has had an extraordinary journey in the decade since it was launched with a predominantly alt-country sound with lashings of Southern rock. By the time Evil Urges (ATO) was released this year, MMJ had become not only one of the most eclectic bands of the moment, but also among the most accomplished and satisfyingly experimental. Picking up where 2005's wide-ranging Z left off, Urges squeezes a peculiarly signature sound out of a cauldron writhing with dozens of musical threads, fusing the group's initial inclinations with pure pop, electro-funk, spacey synthesizer clouds, country, classic soul, and seemingly everything in between. There are spooky psychedelic melodies ("Touch Me I'm Going to Scream"), bristling rock 'n' roll ("Aluminum Park"), raging funk with Princely overtones ("Highly Suspicious," including Jim James's amazing falsetto). Still, MMJ's sound has a surprising overall unity—in the band's relentless quest for fashioning unique configurations out of familiar elements, as well as in the earthy, common-sense philosophical thrust of James's lyrics.
Thu., Oct. 2, 8 p.m., 2008