THE TEXAS GENTLEMEN - TX JELLY

Release Date: 
15.09.2017
Label/Vertrieb: 
New West Records/PIAS-Rough Trade

Sometimes, authenticity can  sneak up on you. The first sounds you hear  on The Texas Gentlemen’s debut studio  album,  TX Jelly, is that  of a band slowly coming  together.

 

It’s deceptive, because it creates the  impression these Gentlemen might  be  hesitant about their first record, but any hint of uncertainty vanishes as the core  quintet — Beau Bedford, Nik Lee,  Daniel  Creamer, Matt  McDonald   and  Ryan  Ake  — tears into  the opening track,  Habbie  Doobie,  a  low-slung piece of vintage  country-funk that  slams out  of the  speakers and  announces The  Texas  Gentlemen as  a force  to be  reckoned with.

 

This Lone  Star-bred collective takes its cues from some of the  iconic  acts of the  past

— the  quicksilver  brilliance  of The Wrecking  Crew, The Muscle  Shoals Swampers (who backed everyone from  Aretha  to  Wilson Pickett),  Booker  T. and  The M.G.’s, and  Bob Dylan’s  one-time backers The  Band  are  the  most   obvious examples.  Bedford, who shares  chief  engineering  and   producing  responsibilities at  Dallas’  Modern   Electric Sound Recorders, assembled The  Texas  Gentlemen as  an  all-purpose backing band for  an  eclectic array  of  singer-songwriters, including  Leon  Bridges, Nikki Lane,  and more.

 

In  2016,   the  Gentlemen were  lured  out  of  the  studio   to  the  Newport Folk  Festival, where   they   were   joined   by  iconic   troubadour  Kris  Kristofferson,  making   his  first Newport appearance in more  than  45 years. Rolling Stone called  it one of the festival’s “most  exciting  sets.”

 

Kristofferson so  enjoyed collaborating with The Texas  Gentlemen that  he enlisted them to reprise their roles  in a series of critically acclaimed Texas  concerts. Of Kristofferson and   The  Texas   Gentlemen’s appearance  at  Bass  Performance Hall  in  Fort  Worth, music   critic  Preston Jones  wrote   “The  [instruments] would  slowly  coalesce around Kristofferson’s gnarled but  still potent voice,  creating an electric  sensation of the  past fusing with the present.”

 

That   deft   fusion   of   before  and   right   now   is  possible  thanks  to   the   musicians’ unswerving dedication  to  simply  playing  to  the  best of  their  abilities,  trusting their instincts, and  letting  the  music  guide  them.  Case in point:  TX Jelly was  created in less than  a week  — four days, start  to finish — at Muscle  Shoals’  singular  FAME Studios.

 

Pared down  from the  28 songs the  Gentlemen recorded in that  96-hour span, TX Jelly effortlessly connects  way  back   to  what’s   next,  summoning the  spirits  of  American songcraft even  as  it heralds the  arrival of 21st  century talent.  Cut live, with little use  for the  blinding  polish  and  careful  presentation of so  much  modern music,  TX Jelly oozes with skill backed up by that  hard-won authenticity.

 

 

TX Jelly moves between contemplative and  raucous, encompassing the full breadth of the  American  experience. The  music  touches on  blues, soul,  folk, country, rock  and gospel — from  first  track  to  last,  you  can  feel The  Texas  Gentlemen reaching deep inside   themselves and   finding  what’s   genuine —  what  illuminates   the  truth  of  the country’s rich, complicated and  singular  artistic  history  — and  delivering  it the only way they know how: real, raw and  righteous.


 

https://www.facebook.com/thetexasgentlemen

 

 

PHOTO CREDIT: CAL QUINN (1,2), JOSEPH LLANES (3)

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