Knoxville-bred rock outfit Royal Bangs have grown and morphed a lot since way back in 2009, when I said that their "knack for blending conventional instrumentation with new-fangled techniques and inventive song structures connotes a maturity that most young bands just don't have." They dropped some members, released some records, played Letterman, toured with Jimmy Eat World and added a bassist. Most recently, they released last year's Brass, a record that contributor Edd Hurt says "takes yacht rock in new, mature directions." Here's an excerpt from Edd's piece:
Brass really does synthesize and reinvigorate any number of late-'70s and early-'80s rock styles — it sounds like Schaefer & Co. spent a couple of years absorbing Pablo Cruise, Michael McDonald, Steely Dan and, for all I know, Rupert Holmes and Jay Ferguson. With bassist Dylan Dawkins providing counterpoint to Rusk's controlled use of sprung rhythms, Brass is revisionist rock with soul, panache and a deft way with the killer hook. The amazing "Laurel" lopes along like Silk Degrees-era Boz Scaggs, while "Hope We Don't Crash" sports one of the band's typically terse, addictive riffs.
I buy it. The Bangs will play The High Watt tonight with Bad Suns. Doors are at 9 p.m., and $13 will get you in.