With six studio albums already under their belt and a seventh around the corner, there is no confusion about how to label these Brooklyn veterans' sound. Their tone is rugged, and timeless, and they manage to put a thousand words into a single guitar slide. This is, in fact, "Straight up Rock & Roll."
The band might have left the amplifiers and distortion pedals in the van for this exclusive acoustic set, but none of the attitude and grittiness that define the band's sound has been lost. Craig Finn lays down some mean vocals while Tad Kubler and Steve Selvidge keep the music grounded with masterful guitar work. The sound may be stripped down from the monumental rock that you'll find on their albums, but the acoustic set packs the same punch with a much more intimate feel.
The rockers bookended this live set with songs from their last record, "Heaven Is Whenever," opening with "The Sweet Part of the City" and closing with "We Can Get Together." In between were two new songs from their upcoming album. "The Only Thing," is a love song with a tough kick to it, and "Almost Everything" is a beautiful slow jam about pretty waffle house waitresses and muffled religious conversations from the back of a movie theater.
If these songs are any indication, the new album, "Teeth Dreams," is going to be one hell of a record.
All photos by Nate Burrell