05.18: Buxton + The Donkeys – Howlin’ Wolf Den
Houston’s Buxton are no stranger to the city of New Orleans, as Friday night’s show at The Howlin’ Wolf Den will be their fourth trip to town in the last 18 months. But these frequent visits – making them a fixture of the local scene in a way even some local bands are not – have all been justified as the last year and a half has been an explosive time for the imaginative folk rock collective. In January they released Nothing Here Seems Strange, their third full length offering and first on Austin’s New West Records, and have been touring almost non-stop since.
Each time they’ve passed through, they seem to show one extra dimension after another beneath their already shifty sound. Guitarists Jason Willis and Austin Sepulvado also happen to lay mandolin and squeeze box to waste with ease, the rhythm section of bassist Chris Wise and drummer Justin Terrell dynamically bounce into and out of lock-step, and the vocal harmonies of relative newcomer Haley Barnes add depth to lead singer Sergio Trevino’s distinctive warble. The result is a hard-to-define blend of progressive indie pop and southern roots rock that is never too precious and, in a live setting, often rambles into multi-faceted demonstrations of dazzling virtuosity. This time around they are joined by San Diego’s The Donkeys.
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