They recommend you don’t let your whisky get out of arm’s reach when Big John Bates is playing their classic rockabilly funk at the Rockwater Grill and Bar.
With Montana’s Brandy Bones on vocals and strings, Big John Bates is championing a sound that makes you feel like you’re being serenaded with a rusty hammer.
Bones combines gymnastic abilities with beautiful bowing; posing on and slapping the upright bass, even hefting her Hofner over her shoulder and offstage. Her voice ranges from creeping soprano to a scream in a single song.
JT Massacre handles the percussion like a champion, his tympani solo is outrageous and the sparks shooting off his grinding wheels are a big part of the show.
John Bates brings wild slide and Gretsch guitars while his grown of a baritone darkens the band’s vocals. He’s also the arranger of this mad rustic symphony and gets his showtime in as well, using a massive pedalboard to propel his stage antics right into the crowd.
Big John Bates was voted one of the top three live shows in 20 years of the Halifax Pop Explosion in 2012, with a score of 9.6 out of 10.
Their new album is what the band calls “American Noir,” their rustic punk style running throughout gives it a tough, western feel. In 2012 they have hit the road in North America, and have triumphantly returned to headline stages across Europe.
The songs on Battered Bones and Headless Fowl (both released in 2012) were brough to life by Robert Ferbrache, the man who pioneered the Denver sound in his Absinthe Studios.
The tracks were recorded by Todd Simki (Pure, Xavier Rudd) in Vancouver, and Mark Robertson (Legendary Shack Shakers) in Nashville.
The trio are hitting the stage at the Rockwater on Thursday Dec. 13. To hear more about Big John Bates go to www.bigjohnbates.com.