Nobody Dances in This Town

He's My Brother She's My Sister

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Nobody Dances in This Town Review

by James Christopher Monger

The debut from self-described Los Angeles-based "glam-folk," "cirque rock," "garage country," and "desert pop" quintet He's My Brother She's My Sister does a fairly solid job of living up to all of the hyperbole. Fronted by siblings Rachel and Rob Kolar, and rounded out by slide guitar, upright bass, and a drummer/tap dancer, HMBSHS can sometimes feel more like a theater troupe than a rock band, but unlike their closest contemporary, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeroes, the band emits a steady undercurrent of downed-wire danger that owes more to the gator- and snake-infested Louisiana bayou than it does the eucalyptus- and patchouli-scented streets of Laurel Canyon. Dark, bluesy exorcisms like "Tales That I Tell," "Let It Live Free," "Clackin' Heels," and "Choir of the Dead" suggest a steady diet of Slim Harpo, Shovels & Rope, Howlin' Wolf, and Jack White, practically begging for placement over the closing credits of an episode of True Blood, but it's not all swamp blues and voodoo torch songs. The likeable "Let's Go," with its propulsive Bo Diddley shimmy, the addictive "My Sharona" snare crack of "Electric Love," and the lovely, primal gospel of closer "Can't See the Stars" ring true as well, and while the Kolars may lack the vocal pyrotechnics of their obvious influences, like true thespians, they have the moxie to make even the most mundane moments seem exciting, which supplies more than enough firepower for the aptly titled Nobody Dances in This Town, a notion that they obviously intend on remedying.

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