>Fits, indeed. Austin, Texas, power trio White Denim's second album is veritably defined by fits and starts. Not only do individual songs engage in sometimes frantic shifts in rhythm and texture, nearly every track juggles a fresh batch of multiple influences, ranging from vintage Texas psychedelia to punk, with country-rock, pop balladry, and funk thrown in for good measure. The lead track alone ricochets through a freakout-worthy barrage of heavy reverb, funk-rock, blues-rock, off-kilter punk rhythms, and distorted pop vocals. The initial burst of incendiary firepower eases off on the noirish "Sex Prayer," and still further on "Regina Holding Hands," an acoustic-guitar-driven ballad featuring vocal harmonies one step removed from America. WD's furious doses of adrenal rock arrive with kit bags so full of ancient nuggets whizzing by that it'll give you fits trying to pick out Zappa, ZZ Top, the James Gang, Roky Erickson, or Peter Green-era Fleetwood Mac. It's great fun, but whether White Denim wear as well as their influences remains to be seen. Another Austin band, opener Brazos, are far more subtle than the Denims on their full-length debut, Phosphorescent Blues. Persistent, simmering contexts ebb and flow while hypnotic melodies flit about, flirting with jazz, folk, and quirky, ruminative rock while lead singer-songwriter Crane waxes impressionistically about love and parking garages. 18+.
Wed., Nov. 4, 8 p.m., 2009