Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Locals Do Bonnaroo

The newly reformed Heartless Bastards are returning to Bonnaroo this summer. The old Bastards lineup played the festival in 2005.

The indie/garage rockers, were originally a four-piece, consisting of founders Erika Wennerstrom, Mike Lamping, Dave Colvin and Michael Weinel. They played their first show at Northside's The Comet in August 2003, where Erika used to bartend. Shortly after, Colvin and Weinel left, and they became a trio by adding Kevin Vaughn on drums.

The Bastards caught their break in 2004, when they were signed to Fat Possum Records, after Patrick Carney (The Black Keys) passed on their demo. The five-song demo was recorded in 2002 at the local Ultrasuede Studios, and featured contributions by Reuben Glaser (Pearlene) and Jesse Ebaugh. Remember that last name for future reference.

Rolling Stone had this to say about their debut album, Stairs and Elevators:
"the Heartless Bastards are a small-town band who are ready to show the big city no mercy."

From there, their success continued to build. They finished #12 on WOXY's "97 Best of 2005" among the likes of Spoon, and ahead of The White Stripes.

It was time for a change come August 2008. Erika relocated to the "Live Music Capital of the World" (Austin, TX), and hooked back up with Ebaugh (bass) and original drummer, Dave Colvin.

The third album, The Mountain, produced by Spoon producer Mike McCarthy, was released on February 3.

The Heartless Bastards have returned home, fresh off the South by Southwest Festival. They are playing The Madison Theater tonight, with openers Black Joe Lewis and the Honey Bears. The show starts at 8 pm. Wish I wasn't working tonight so I could attend the show.

Guess I'll have to check 'em out at the 'roo this summer.

Other 'roo artists you may like:

Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, White Rabbits, Delta Spirit

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