White Denim
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White Denim

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"Austinist Review"

White Denim are sort of an anomaly in Austin: they aren't iPod dance-rock, they don't have a gimmick, and they haven't been consumed by the scene's self-conscious rock elite. They seem to be making it based on the purest of rock 'n roll fantasies: a live show that makes people turn around and smile at each other, and songs which catalyze that in more ways than one. But describing their sound can be difficult.

Paging Captain Beefheart. Captain? We think we've found your long-lost adopted grandsons. And they've been listening to Nuggets.

We've had some good-natured arguments before about this, and to their credit, have reached no solid agreement. The subtle goofiness of a non-self-referencing Jon Spencer Blues Explosion meets The Creation meets psychedelic gospel hootenanny on PCP. Add a dash of mid-to-late era King Crimson, a heaping tablespoon of the raunchiest Kinks and Yardbirds tracks (Dave Davies on vocals, ladies and gents), and puree until completely fucking insane, periodically checking to make sure that the blender doesn't burst into flames.

At the same time, we hear some of Jim O'Rourke's guitar experimentation circa Bad Timing with a healthy dose of good old fashioned pick-less rock 'n roll guitar work a laBuckingham or maybe even Strummer & Jones. The bass sounds like it was built by Albini & Weston, and the drumming hints at both experimental percussionists and more traditional jazz drummers. We think of Buddy Rich vs. Animal on the old Muppet Show every time we watch them play.

The live show is equal parts cocksure rock and genuine thrill when the audience engages. No one is yelling imperatives at you, yet you feel compelled to clap and dance and stomp and yell along with the songs you know. For many, just finding yourself drawn in to a live act like that is enough to come away feeling like you've enjoyed yourself, but beyond the fun aspect, the songs are, for the most part, far more complicated than they might initially appear. When watching White Denim play, it might be tempting to call them garage rock or post-punk or something like that, and it's partially true because of the spirit of the whole thing, but those classifications intimate a certain simplicity which patronizes the complexity of some of the compositions. It's not rocket science, but it's heavily influenced by jazz, utilizing complex rhythm changes and time signatures. The live show is engaging and brilliant not just because the songs are great, but also because of the three guys working so hard to play them. When it works, there are looks of "Holy shit I can't believe we pulled that off," and that's hard to find in this town.

Anomaly is right. Hopefully this is an harbinger of things to come for our scene which, of late, has produced some alarmingly self-conscious bands. White Denim, though, definitely have the bite to back up the bark, and the great thing is, they're not the ones barking. We are. - Austinist


"Austinist Review"

White Denim are sort of an anomaly in Austin: they aren't iPod dance-rock, they don't have a gimmick, and they haven't been consumed by the scene's self-conscious rock elite. They seem to be making it based on the purest of rock 'n roll fantasies: a live show that makes people turn around and smile at each other, and songs which catalyze that in more ways than one. But describing their sound can be difficult.

Paging Captain Beefheart. Captain? We think we've found your long-lost adopted grandsons. And they've been listening to Nuggets.

We've had some good-natured arguments before about this, and to their credit, have reached no solid agreement. The subtle goofiness of a non-self-referencing Jon Spencer Blues Explosion meets The Creation meets psychedelic gospel hootenanny on PCP. Add a dash of mid-to-late era King Crimson, a heaping tablespoon of the raunchiest Kinks and Yardbirds tracks (Dave Davies on vocals, ladies and gents), and puree until completely fucking insane, periodically checking to make sure that the blender doesn't burst into flames.

At the same time, we hear some of Jim O'Rourke's guitar experimentation circa Bad Timing with a healthy dose of good old fashioned pick-less rock 'n roll guitar work a laBuckingham or maybe even Strummer & Jones. The bass sounds like it was built by Albini & Weston, and the drumming hints at both experimental percussionists and more traditional jazz drummers. We think of Buddy Rich vs. Animal on the old Muppet Show every time we watch them play.

The live show is equal parts cocksure rock and genuine thrill when the audience engages. No one is yelling imperatives at you, yet you feel compelled to clap and dance and stomp and yell along with the songs you know. For many, just finding yourself drawn in to a live act like that is enough to come away feeling like you've enjoyed yourself, but beyond the fun aspect, the songs are, for the most part, far more complicated than they might initially appear. When watching White Denim play, it might be tempting to call them garage rock or post-punk or something like that, and it's partially true because of the spirit of the whole thing, but those classifications intimate a certain simplicity which patronizes the complexity of some of the compositions. It's not rocket science, but it's heavily influenced by jazz, utilizing complex rhythm changes and time signatures. The live show is engaging and brilliant not just because the songs are great, but also because of the three guys working so hard to play them. When it works, there are looks of "Holy shit I can't believe we pulled that off," and that's hard to find in this town.

Anomaly is right. Hopefully this is an harbinger of things to come for our scene which, of late, has produced some alarmingly self-conscious bands. White Denim, though, definitely have the bite to back up the bark, and the great thing is, they're not the ones barking. We are. - Austinist


Discography

Let's Talk About It EP/7"
Tracks stream on the Website and Gorilla vs. Bear and Aquarium Drunkard and Rock Insider and Trip Wire and Kids Pushing Kids and Little Radio and...

Upcoming Single on I am Sound Records

Full Length Due out this Fall

Photos

Bio

The story, ive found of white denim really, begins with parque touch; then; after the departure of byshop massive from which white denim comes. In not attempting to prefess, now I may if I will say that these jobs are reflected in each song of the bands every move. The sirs before mentioned in these modern times are near to themselves and becoming daily in their times at the “free wheel” of disposure. At the brink of it all is the concretality of a format being contributable to outcomings. If not to simplify too; so, I retrace in my unstated, potentially radical view, of the eventual occasion to this at present one may encounter upon; whether enduring or adoring, but presently existing continually.