Heathens serve up rock n roll stew | AspenTimes.com

Heathens serve up rock n roll stew

Janet Urquhart

Austins Band of Heathens from left, Brian Keane, Ed Jurdi, Seth Whitney, Gordy Quist and Colin Brooks plays Steves Guitars in downtown Carbondale tonight and Thursday, Jan. 24-25. (Courtesy Fat Caddy Records)

Aspen, CO ColoradoCARBONDALE Austins Band of Heathens should be all over the musical map.With four solo singer/songwriters all bringing their own influences to a collective effort that began more or less accidentally, its not hard to imagine a battle of the bands within the band every time they take the stage. Instead, the group has coalesced into a sum as great as its parts four frontmen as capable of four-part harmony and tight musicianship as they are at taking the lead. Add a fifth member accustomed to laying down the bass lines for each of his bandmates solo sets and Band of Heathens creates what member Ed Jurdi calls rock n roll stew. Itll be on the menu at Steves Guitars in Carbondale tonight and Thursday.Jurdi, Colin Brooks, Gordy Quist and Brian Keane shared the bill as separate acts at Austins Momos, with Seth Whitney playing bass, when the four songwriters decided to share the stage and improvise. The musical mix was a hit with the crowds at Momos and the bands Wednesday night gigs became a local happening, according to Quist, reached on the road in Park City, Utah, where the band played Monday.Even though each persons coming from a different place, when we play as the Heathens, it takes on the Heathens thing, he said.Brooks, Jurdi, Quist and Keane all have solo releases to their credit, while Whitney has recorded with various Austin bands, but these days, the group is collaborating on a second CD as a followup to its collective debut, The Heathens, Live From Momos, recorded on two nights last May. That first CD brings each members style to the fore; the followup should be more cohesive, according to Quist.Weve been trying to do more stuff where its not, OK, thats his song, thats his song. Its kind of becoming more of a band, he said.On stage, the four-man front means no band member is front and center, giving the Heathens live shows a relaxed feel, with plenty of ribbing and banter, Quist added.I think its more entertaining, he said. It can be kind of a fun, cut-up kinda show.But when the music starts, dont expect to pigeonhole the Heathens in any particular genre. Live From Momos mixes in everything from soul and rock to elements of country and r&b, Quist noted, comparing the groups sound to inspirations like Little Feat and The Band.The two-night stand at Steves marks the bands Colorado debut, though several individual members have toured the state previously and Quist with family in the Roaring Fork Valley is no stranger to the area.Ive heard a lot of good things about Steves Guitars, he said. It sounds like a cool place.Admission is $12 for the Heathens. Shows start at 8:30 p.m. both nights.Friday brings local group The Frank Martin Band back to Steves for an 8:30 p.m. show a followup to Martins CD release party at the listening room last November. Admission is $10.On Saturday at 8 p.m., Steves hosts an evening of live music, short films, food and drink, and an art raffle. Donations will be accepted at the door.Local videographer Hamilton Pevec, who took his video gear to Daramsala, India to document the lessons of the Dalai Lama and teach his followers how to use the equipment, will show footage from the project.Area singer/songwriter John Hatanaka will make his debut on Steves stage, followed by local trio Jack Rugile, Trevor Paine and Ali Paine. Finally, local band The Hideouts will play a set thats likely to induce dancing, according to Steves owner Steve Standiford.Janet Urquharts e-mail address is janet@aspentimes.com

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