friday

New York is a city of immigrants, many of them from the South, so it’s possible the whoops and hollers on Shooter Jennings and the .357’s Live at Irving Plaza 4.18.06 aren’t entirely the work of guys in ironic cowboy hats. Still, you’ve got to imagine Jennings’ late father, Waylon, would at least cock an eyebrow at a country album recorded in the heart of tony Gramercy Park. Shooter—who, let’s face it, used to live in New York himself—ignores such contradictions and charges through swampy outlaw tunes such as “Southern Comfort,” which practically screams “play ‘Freebird!’” before some asshole does. It’s not the only peck on the cheek of hard rock on Irving Plaza. Opener “Electric Rodeo” bites “Whole Lotta Love” pretty hard, and “Busted in Baylor County” tells the tale of Jennings and the boys ending up in the pokey by interpolating more than one explanatory bar of Black Sabbath’s “Sweet Leaf.” As a “you had to be there” document, it’s not quite up there with Kick Out the Jams, but I’d pay good money to see whether Jennings’ callouts to Jesus in “Manifesto No. 2” and “Manifesto No. 1” caused any widespread fidgeting in this bluest-of-the-blue-states crowd. And I also can’t help wondering if lyrics such as “Watching my 20s/Hittin’ my 30s/Lettin’ it go” aren’t the best (accidental?) description of living in New York I’ve heard since I used to get homesick at country shows there. Hoist a PBR, sincerely or not, when Jennings performs with the Deadstring Brothers at 11 p.m. at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $15. (202) 265-0930. (Andrew Beaujon)

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