Hillstomp

Friday, April 25, Bender's Tavern, 303-861-7070.

Hillstomp's bucket thumper and washboard scraper John Johnson once said, "The blues isn't really about being sad," but about using the music as a celebration, to bring yourself up and out of something. Johnson and guitarist/singer Henry Kammerer know a few things about lifting up spirits with their punk-infused, backwoods Delta blues stomp. In addition to some killer originals fueled by Kammerer's slide playing, the duo takes on R.L. Burnside and Mississippi Fred McDowell tunes with the fervor of the Clash. It's all there in its gritty and swampy glory on last year's live album, After Two but Before Five, which was recorded over two nights in Eugene, Oregon, and in the group's home town of Portland. Over those two nights, the guys took several originals and reworked them into fiery blues tunes that have absolutely nothing to do with being sad.

 
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