The California-based all-female four-piece Erase Errata hit town this week carrying with them a string of dubious comparisons to bands such as Public Image Limited and Gang Of Four. Well, Erase Errata's sound is a lot messier than those groove-oriented post-punks. Instead, judging from the band's debut album Other Animals, Erase Errata sounds like a more arty strain of riot-girl. The band traffics in antsy, tense punk-funk with taut, angular guitar lines and everygirl vocal chants. At times (see "High Society"), the band's kitchen-sink art-skronk evokes Captain Beefheart as much as any similar guitar-bass-drums indie band. Other Animals comes across as a compelling work in progress, but Erase Errata are reportedly a pretty hot live band. And their local tag-team partners this week, The Lost Sounds,need no qualifier when it comes to the intensity of their live set. With this double bill Sunday, July 14th, at the Hi-Tone Café serving as an unofficial release party for that band's most recent release, an outtakes and demos record, the Lost Sounds are likely to set a pretty high standard for their out-of-town colleagues to live up to.
If you don't already own a copy of the Ray Price album Nightlife, by all means, rush out and get one. It's a breakthrough album where lush, smoky jazz meets hard-corn honky tonk, and it might be the single greatest country album of all time. It begins with Price thanking his fans for being so kind and introducing what he believed to be a new kind of country music: more suave and sophisticated. The first, iconic track, Price says, is "by a boy from down Texas way." That boy was Willie Nelson, then Price's sideman in the Cherokee Cowboys. Nelson's uniquely expressive voice, both as songwriter and performer, have made him a national treasure. He never lost track of his country roots, even as his music shifted in a decidedly Waitsian direction with the release of 1998's Teatro, his best album of the '90s. It almost seems silly to recommend such a known commodity as Willie Nelson, especially since his constant touring brings him our way so often, but by golly, he's worth it. Just like Merle Haggard or George Jones, you should see him every chance you get. Catch Willie at the Grand Casino on Friday, July 12th, with current Nashville darling Lee Ann Womack and ask him if we can get Buck Owens touring again. -- Chris Davis