Friday, October 19, 2012

Sunday: Jon Spencer Blues Explosion at Bottom Lounge

Posted By on 10.19.12 at 03:20 PM

Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
  • Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Reunited bands now seem nearly as plentiful as new bands, and the first measure of any regrouped lineup is whether it can still bang out the old material with gusto and skill. I think the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion have more or less succeeded on that count—when I saw them play under the brutal midafternoon sun at the 2010 Pitchfork Music Festival they sounded pretty great, even if they didn't quite have the old swagger. Aging is a bitch when agility and sex appeal are a big part of what makes your band work onstage, and JSBX haven't been immune to the ravages of time. Spencer's shtick seemed less amusing, but the music still had its oomph.

That brings us to the second and much trickier measure of a reunited group: new material. JSBX were touring behind deluxe reissues of nearly their whole catalog in 2010, but Sunday at Bottom Lounge the band will be supporting a new studio album called Meat and Bone (Boombox/Mom + Pop). I don't think anyone will confuse this new effort with Acme, Orange, Extra Width, or Now I Got Worry, but it's hardly an embarrassment—in fact it's better than late-period JSBX records Plastic Fang and Damage. The trio stick to their old strengths—no-frills, stripped-down rock 'n' roll more indebted to the Rolling Stones than to the blues, with the gut-punch swing of drummer Russell Simins and nifty riff interplay between Spencer and guitarist Judah Bauer. They're not about to set the world on fire, but they've made a solid new record, which is more than most reunited bands can say. Below you can check out a new track called "Bag of Bones."

Bag Of Bones by JSBX

photo: Stefano Giovannini

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