The Bexar County Bastards, Come And Take It

The Bexar County Bastards, Come And Take It

Okay, I think I get it now. I was confused, at first, by the Bexar County Bastards’ name, of all things — it just didn’t seem to fit with what I knew/know of Bexar County, that chunk of Texas centered around San Antonio. Bastards? From Bexar? Really? It seemed like a bit of a stretch.

See, my parents and little brother have lived out on the west side of San Antonio for 20 years now, and my main image of the city/county, based on trips down to see them, is basically of lots of elderly retirees (i.e., my parents’ neighbors), active-duty military folks, SeaWorld-/Alamo-/Riverwalk-bound tourists, and not a whole lot else. I’ve been to a couple of bars down there, and maybe I just didn’t dig deep enough, but everybody seemed relatively friendly and laid-back.

Which explains the bit of cognitive dissonance that hit me when I first fired up the Bastards’ Come And Take It (and by the by, high-five to the trio on the Texas history nod with the album title and the Gonzales cannon on the cover). It’s raunchy and raw, unapologetically gutter-level metal that’s sleazy but never cheeseball, all distorted guitars and not-too-fast rhythms with fiery guitar solos, rough-edged vocals, and occasional nods to classic metal from Back in the Day like cowbells (yes, cowbells).

They kick in at “My Baby,” which is down-and-dirty and grimy as all hell and reminiscent of fellow fuck-it-all rock dudes the Hell City Kings more than anything else, and they barely stop for breath ’til “Suicide,” barely 30 minutes later. In between they blaze through eight tracks about drinking, fighting, fucking, and rocking, although not necessarily in that order (and sometimes all at once), like the fun, furious “Little Mama” and raucous party-lighter “Get Fucked Up.”

Things only really slow down with “Annie’s Song,” and even that’s pretty dark and stomping, before surging back into “Bexar County Queen” and the utterly classic-sounding “Hack City.” The crowning moment, though, has to be “W.W.L.D.,” which elevates Lemmy Kilmister to his rightful place as the true prophet of All Things Metal and asks what he’d do if he happened to be hanging around; it’s both an entertaining concept and surprisingly catchy. These guys are like a Southern-fried, Texas-bred version of vintage Mötley Crüe, and that’s no bad thing.

Now, to head back up to the beginning once again, I think I know why the Bexar County Bastards and the part of Texas they claim as home don’t seem to fit real well (and why they’re hanging their hats up in Austin, these days): they managed to wreck shit down in San Antonio so badly their fellow San Antonians kicked ’em out, forcing them to flee northwards to more music-friendly climes. How’s that for metal?

[The Bexar County Bastards are playing 8/12/11 at Rudyard’s, along with Automatic Thrill & Donkey Punch.]
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Review by . Review posted Friday, August 12th, 2011. Filed under Features, Reviews.

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One Response to “The Bexar County Bastards, Come And Take It

  1. SPACE CITY ROCK » Yr. Weekend, Pt. 1: Dharmageddon + Bexar City Bastards (Rev’d!) + Niceguys(?) + Mantis + DJ Craig H + More on August 12th, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    […] a little while back, and I’m enjoying the hell out of it at the moment. Full review on over here, if you’re so […]

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