You get the feeling the Minutemen are never very far from the Jonx's turntables. Not many bands splice together jazz and hardcore punk these days, and fewer still do it with a dash of humor — check the Full Metal Jacket takeoff at the beginning of "I'm Getting Really Good at Tetris," a track from the Houston-born trio's recently released Vocabularian Herds LP. Elsewhere on Herds, the Jonx goes even further afield, from the brutal, busy punk-funk blasts of opener "The Past Is All You Get" and "Train Song" to the sprawling, almost soothing instrumental passages of "Highway at Night," which feels as long as a moonlit drive from Houston to Austin, where Jonx drummer (and former Houston Press contributor) Daniel Mee now lives. "Connection," appropriately, meets in the middle, balancing jagged riffs with an equally sharp melody. Then the screaming starts.
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