Woven bones conjure up an image of distorted flesh bound up in rigid marrow, like a Francis Bacon painting set to a soundtrack. Perhaps that image in turn would evoke a thrash cross-over Lordi homage- bit of face paint, bit of hard core. But no, these Woven Bones take a more tried-and-tested route through the American backwaters, skipping past Crocodiles, giving a little nod to Jacuzzi Boys on the way.
This is a little bit more of that grungy garage vibe which is winging its way across the Atlantic in many forms. But where bands like Harlem and Jacuzzi Boys take a more languid sound, Woven Bones get down and dirty. The vocals skip and muddle over the feedback guitar, at points you may fear the lead singer might need a sip of water or a good hacking cough to clear his throat but keep that hand off the NHS Direct website for now.
Ringleader Burr moved from Florida to Austin where the band turned ‘altogether more vicious’. It’s almost like a revolt against that jangly Florida happiness. Not everyone can conform to the heat like a Beach Boys pyjama party- Woven Bones are a case in point. Theirs is a more cynical view. A Jesus and Mary chain dirge, a Cramps impulse driven beat- a zombie rock-a-billy surfacing for a breath of fresh air.
The hypnotic quality of their music stops it from being repetitive, the rumbling drum and bass keep it moving. You could be fooled into thinking these are a band affected by the global recession as they never stray from the guitar/bass/drum combo. Economical they surely are. But ‘I’ll Be Runnin’ is a primitive shake up with a beat guaranteed to make your booty shake. ‘Your Sorcery’ is a punk nugget early Iggy would be proud of.
Listening to Woven Bones is like taking those first steps into the dirtiest, dankest club in your town- your shoes are sticking to the lino floors, there are suspect stains skulking on the fraying circa 1970s wallpaper and the bouncer definitely has some strain of hepatitis. But that won’t stop you from getting in there and drinking enough until your head hits the beer splattered floor. Mild concussion ensues but Woven Bones remain.