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the hackberries

the hackberries

SAN SABA COUNTY

SAN SABA COUNTY

beerland, TX

DOUBLE NAUGHT SPIES
Beerland, September 19, 2003

Naught? Knot? Not? Billy the Beerland doorman tried to explain this band name, even drawing a picture of it, which looked like the male-female symbol for neither-nor. Some kind of double-negative. Guess that means if they're not totally lame and not totally gay, they must be OK. Upbeat garage rock with steady-driving rhythms, kind of Ramones but sub-Ramones-genius in the chord progression department. They did a Mummies cover. Wendy liked it.

Then just as the girl-talk turned on my particular taste for barbarians, the band pushed my buttons with a song called "Caveman Stomp". The hip-looking, decent raspy-voiced singer made the most of what he's got by hanging on his best note and letting the band rock around it. The highlight was a buffed female drummer who just bashed away at her kit with no signs of wearing down. Someone compared her to a happy dog trotting along, all pigtails and spunk. Good, highenergy band, not breaking any new ground, but definitely breaking some strings.

-Beky Hayes

HACKBERRIES / SAN SABA COUNTY
Beerland, September 18, 2003

When no one when signs up to review a show and somehow you get stuck with the assignment, you should ask yourself why. Could it perhaps be an evening of blue grass music? The members of the band San Saba County need to rise up and overthrow their intolerable singer. Please do him and the rest of us all a favor and save our ears. It really is a shame that they don't have a better vocalist because the actual band is quite good. The drummer and fiddle player put on an excellent performance, making me not totally dismiss this band and genre of music altogether.

Perhaps they should play a completely instrumental set. Then the singer doesn't totally have to leave the band. His guitar playing suits the group, so he can stay. Just get him away from a microphone and don't let him open his mouth. Let the revolution of San Saba County begin.

Next up was the Hackberries. Yet another in the blue grass field. At least this singer had skill in his music style. This band not all together bad, just not my cup of tea. I really tried to sit through their entire set, but after awhile this music gives me a headache. If you like blue grass music check these bands out, you just might have a different take on their performances than I did. Hey, you can't like everything out there. You have to have some discrimination.

-Misty Sweet

PRETTY BEAT UP
Beerland, September 2, 2003

Pretty Beat Up: I say Pretty Bad Ass. Groovy-lookin' band playing groovy slowride rock, at first sounding like a Motown Steve Miller with a Melvins twang in the vocals. Steady-driving 3-41 progressions, shifting to happy-moody day-dream rock with lead singer fashionably off-key.

The singer is some kind of androgynous Iggy Pop character playing percussion and a giant kazoo. Modern Lovers style keyboards add to the bop-in-your-chair carny feel. Next a cover: Starfucker, sung by the androgyn. If that's a chick, it's one of the coolest chicks in town. She has a wicked cool voice and dammit she looks like Patty Smith, Chrissie Hynde and Joey Ramone. Lately I'm tired of all the chick-worship in rock, but here's one tuff baby who deserves some. Now a 1-2-4 Stones-riff, OK now I'm getting bored. Hey tune up faster, guys, I'm bored. By the way, can we have a Red River "Wet Cool-Chick Contest"?

-Beky Hayes

all photos this page: beth sams

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