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Walk Alone

Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash
Walk Alone
Ultimatum Music

The perfect antidote to pop country, these Southern California cowboys sound like they were born and raised in the dusty roadhouses of America's backcountry. The alt-country band got Cash's blessing before adopting its name, likely because the Man in Black approved of the group's vintage country style. Influenced by icons like Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard (the band covers Haggard's "Silver Wings," along with Dale Watson's "Truckstop in La Grange"), Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash's music is living proof that anything old can be made new again. Highlights of its first full-length recording include the twangy title track, the sultry south-of-the-border lilt of "Seven Steps" and the plaintive heartbreak of "Lonesome Sky." In essence transporting its listeners to outlaw country through song, the rootsy honky-tonk band careens through the Southwestern desert on songs like "Interstate Cannonball," "440 Horses" and "Trains Gonna Roll." (Sarah Quelland)

Comes With the Fall

Comes With the Fall

This San Francisco-based rock band caught my attention when it opened for Jerry Cantrell at the Usual. After embarking with Cantrell and Swarm on a month-long tour of the Southwestern states, members of this group are currently playing in Cantrell's touring band. Comes With the Fall has an invigorating stage presence to go along with its textured music and passionate lyrics. Melodic and poetic, the ardent band reminds me of a heavier U2, particularly on "The Three Wishes," "No Need to Wonder" and "Smoke and Mirrors." Vocalist and guitarist William DuVall, guitarist Nico Constantine, bassist Adam Stranger and drummer Bevan Davies seem to embrace their classic-rock influences (you can hear a bit of everything from Black Sabbath to the Stooges to Queen to Soundgarden in its songs), but their own complex bouquet sounds fresh and modern. (SQ)

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From the May 3-9, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2001 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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