ACL 2012 Friday Night: Father John Misty and Dry The River at The Parish
Austin, TX – Austin City Limits 2012 festival kicked off Thursday night (10.11.2012) with Alabama Shakes at Stubbs. The young Athens, Alabama quintet have skyrocketed to critical acclaim and music industry hype in a short amount of time, and judging by the sold-out show, their commercial appeal has no ceiling.
The band’s performance at Stubbs live up to the hype and more, often surpassing simple rock formulas most bands can’t pull off. Playing a majority of the songs from their 2012 debut LP, Boys and Girls, The Shakes channeled CCR’s rambling, soulful spirit. Every song in a live setting squashes any doubts listeners might have about the Shakes from listening to the debut LP. Songs like Rise To The Sun, You Ain’t Alone, and Hold On strut with passion and rock muscle.
As tight a band as the Alabama Shakes are, much of their success can be attributed to lead singer-songwriter and guitarist, Brittany Howard. A stunning vocalist and an incredible guitar player commanded the sold-out Stubbs crowd for a 16 song set. Howard is the punk-blues heartbeat of the Shakes, driving the band and fueling the crowd unlike anyone I’ve seen her age (22) in a long time. There are no words for her vocals, think Etta, think Fogerty, think Janis, think of all the greats you’ve never seen kids— including this writer— after seeing and hearing Howard and her Alabama Shakes for the first time at Stubbs.
P.S.: Y’all can damn me all you want for ending an article on this note— her voice aside, Ms. Howard’s a bad ass, mother-f_____g-guitar player.
Andy Whorehall (SM)
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