Sour Bridges: “J-Train”

It’s a weird dichotomy in this town that we crave authenticity AND something different. We want the roots and we want a little bit o’ sugar and spice. So it’s no surprise that we like our roots music with a little dash of that something special innit. Austin bluegrass (or “browngrass” as the like to call themselves) quintet Sour Bridges certainly know that. They inject a little rock ‘n’ roll flaire to their rootsy Americana, making for a sound that’s as welcoming as pecan tree shade and as stirring as a belt of fine bourbon.

The band is brothers Bill and Matt Pucci on guitars and vocals, Kat Wilkes on fiddle, Jackson “Jack Bridges” Ellis on bass and vocals, and drummer Dalton Chamblee. The five got together back in 2009, and the following year they released their debut full-length Workin’ On Leavin’. They’ve played all over Austin and the Hill Country–including a very fine set at 2012’s UTOPiAfest. A quick glance at their upcoming gigs page shows a pretty dern hardworkin’ band. And speaking of shows, this Friday (May 31) Sour Bridges’ll be celebrating the release of their sophomore full-length Catfish Charlie with a show at the Scoot Inn along with brothers-in-folk Clyde and Clem’s Whiskey Business and LCD Soundsystem tribute band All My Friends.

At 15 tracks, Sour Bridges pack a lot of good tunes on Catfish Charlie, and one of ’em is “J-Train.” It’s a warm, laid-back song that’s more Texas two-step than Kentucky bluegrass. Wilkes’s fiddle is downright lovely, as are the call-and-response between the vocals and the music. The train is a much-loved theme in American music, and it’s particularly fitting for a tune that feels so much like it’s taking you back home.

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