Macon Greyson

A band in the alt-country tradition of Uncle Tupelo, Macon Greyson -- and its mad-scientist front man Buddy Huffman -- give us hope in the midst of the current sea of Texas Bowel Movement meatpuppets and wanna-be-a-Nashville-star strumpets. More Wilco-ish than Willie-esque, more like Ryan Adams than like Jerry Jeff, these Dallas rockers somehow have managed to carve a niche for themselves right in the belly of the Bowel Movement beast. And all without a single mention of Texas or the jingoistic pining-for-chili-and-Hill Country-roads poseur lyrical garbage that weighs upon an increasingly corporate-friendly and narrowly defined genre. In fact, Macon Greyson is a lot like rocking homeboy Jack Ingram in terms of lyrical quality and knock-down-walls musical power. It's not surprising, then, that both acts cut their teeth in the legendary Dallas tonk Adair's.

Translate, the upcoming (May 10) release, is the band's third record (the first was a folky affair produced by pal Ray Wylie Hubbard), and it takes up where the hard-edged 2003 Uneasy left off -- with big beats, jangling guitar rhythms, the tasty twang of lead guitarist Harley Husbands, and Huffman's cracked view of relationship dynamics and social dysfunction. (What, no Pat Green covers?) Macon Greyson actually proves that fun and serious lyrical content can coexist.

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William Michael Smith