Sun, March 17, 2013
Doors: 8:00 PM / Show: 8:30 PM
This show is 21+, proper I.D. is required for admission
Every great once in a while, something comes along to remind you of what rock 'n' roll is supposed to sound like, to push rock's essence and spirit into your veins and manipulate your heart and mind. I Can Lick Any Sonofabitch In The House -- their full moniker is borrowed from bare-knuckle legend John L. Sullivan's vivid biography -- is a raucous quintet out of Portland, Oregon, and one of those rare throwback-catalysts. For the past couple of months, they have been on an erratic, scorched-earth campaign of the Western states, making instant believers out of audience after audience. I Can Lick's heady mix of Americana and punk reminiscent of Robbie Robertson and the Band, Neil Young and Crazy Horse, and Black Flag -- has also converted dozens of marquee-mates, who have learned the hard way that following I Can Lick on the bill is often an embarrassing situation. More at website.
Drag The River are one of those bands that manage to transcend the confines and boundaries of the musical world and become more like a legend, the kind of band you hear during an overnight roadtrip while driving down the interstate in a sleepy carful of close friends rather than the glossy pages of industry tabloids. You and your buddy are riding shotgun at 4 AM while everyone else snores in the backseat, and while rifling through someone’s collection
you find this CD and decide to throw it in. Months later, you’re completely hooked. There’s something about their haunting croon and fuzzed-out Telecasters that make everything fit together so perfectly, hitting that same elusive mix of rock n’ roll and alt-country that The Replacements defined and so many others have tried to cop. Ingrained with a rigorous work ethic over their years in cult punk superheroes Armchair Martian and ALL, they found themselves releasing a constant assortment of 7”s and splits, many of which are now long-lost and out of print, all of which are gathered here on one disc. As with many collection records, this disc provides a fascinating
glimpse into their earlier years, as one can observe how rough-around-the-edges demos and misplaced riffs were hammered into acclaimed albums. Also included are more recent tracks that guide first-time listeners on an introduction to one of the most cult-like followings in underground music.
The Story: Drag The River began in 1996, when Chad was playing in ALL and Jon was rocking in Armchair Martian. The two wanted an outlet for the more laid-back, country-influenced songs they were both writing, so they teamed up and used spare time at Colorado’s Blasting Room Studios to record over 20 demo tracks. They invited friends to stop by and collaborate, eventually clicking with Karl Alvarez of The Descendents/ALL. Together they released “Hobo’s Demos” in 2000 and “Closed” in 2002. Karl bailed in 2002 once they began touring too much and was replaced by J.J. Nobody of The Nobodys. With a firmly cemented line-up, Drag The River went on to release a score of records over the next few years, including the “Live At The Starlight” LP, the “It’s Crazy” LP, and last year’s “You Can’t Live This Way” LP. 2007 saw a short-lived hiatus for them, but as of 2008 they are unofficially reunited and playing shows with a revolving cast of members.
Future Plans: Both Jon and Chad will be releasing solo records in 2009, but Drag The River will undoubtedly countinue their current pattern of sporadic shows around the country. At this point, the status of their “hiatus” is up in the air, but new songs are always being written and a new record could easily pop up anytime.
Bands They Have Rocked With: Hank III, ALL, Teenage Bottlerocket, Lucero, The Supersuckers, The Drive-By Truckers,
Cory Branan, The Dropkick Murphys, Gogol Bordello, Throwrag, The Groovie Ghoulies, The Ergs!, Tim Barry, Ninja Gun, Son Volt, Two Cow Garage, Limbeck, Dwight Yoakam, Spoon, Rocky Votolato, Owen, The Reverend Horton Heat, Deer Tick, and Joey Cape. They’ve been pretty busy over the last decade.