Snowbyrd

Looking to feed your indie-rock jones? San Antonio’s SNOWBYRD may be just what you’re seeking. Hard-driving, chugging guitar rhythms, melodic songs with off-kilter Phish/Meat Puppets/Grateful Dead (pick your generation) harmonies, a flair for weird turns, and, of course, a proud lo-fi aesthetic are all combined on the band’s self-titled debut (Saustex). And it’s a winning concoction. One thing is noticeable right off: Most songs are accompanied by a floating, disembodied pedal steel. On the more alt-country tunes (such as “Tower of Pearl”), this is a natural fit, yet it is also strangely at home on the rockers (“Remember U,” “Las Vegas Buffet”) and the fuzzed-out psychedelic numbers (“Ram,” “For Today”). Led by brothers Chris and Scott Lutz, Snowbyrd is one of those young, hungry bands that’s easy to love. Despite losing its home base, S.A.’s famed rock hangout Tacoland, when owner Ram Ayala was murdered during a robbery last summer, the band shows no trace of disillusionment in its infectious music. Its members write their songs together, and several, like “St. Mary’s Night,” perfectly conjure a certain subset of Alamo City nightlife.

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