TEXT/PHOTOS BY JOHN BOYDSTON
Headliners FUTUREBIRDS capped a big night of big new music at One-Eyed Jacks. Like a lot of great bands from Athens, Ga that came before, Futurebirds bring a lot of influences into their music and end up with their own thing. On the band website they describe their music as ‘laid-back country-rock with an atmospheric, psychedelic twist,’ which is true as far as it goes. They can’t come out and say ‘we are a kick-ass band and rapidly becoming the best at what we do so look out you rock and rollers,’ but I can. They command a stage with great songs, outstanding harmonies, and musical chops. No gimmicks here, and onstage they aren’t trying to out Dr. Dog each other, if you know what I mean. They just play, rock, and stretch-out when its time, with a very tight rhythm section the guitars can dance on or cut through, Crazy Horse-style, and that includes some killer pedal steel playing.
Futurebirds are on tour through June, hitting big festivals and club dates across the West and South. Check out exact where and when, and go stream then buy their 2nd release ‘Baby Yaga’ here: futurebirdsmusic.com I look forward to hearing their third LP later in the year, which they’ll no doubt be touring to support before the wax on the new vinyl has dried. Futurebirds are: Thomas Johnson, Carker King, Dennis Love, Brannen Miles, and Daniel Womack
Meanwhile, starting things off for the evening was new band YARD DOGS, from Atlanta. Despite their youth these guys already have an impressive release history, releasing an EP ‘Boomer’ in 2014 and a new full-length LP ‘Delphi’ out in January. And the eight or so songs they played from their catalogue sounded polished and confident. Kind of a fluid, crunchy, psych bounce to their sound, which will no doubt evolve. They enjoyed a warm opening band welcome too. Yard Dogs are: Max Boydston, Daniel Feinberg, Alex Glick, and Yitzi Peetluk. Check out their music and future dates at yarddogs.bandcamp.com
Middle of the bill was WATER LIARS, a trio from Oxford, MS and place that seems to be a new breeding ground for some heavy-sounding new south rock. I only heard a few songs but liked what I heard. I couldn’t shake the overall impression of a jaded Marshall Crenshaw meets pre-fame Kings of Leon, weaving dark tales and leaving the pop stuff behind. Makes me want to hear more. Water Liars are: Andrew Bryant, Justin Peter Kinkel-Schuster, and GR Robinson. Check ‘em out at waterliarsmusic.com