Review: Mississippi Bones – Fat Bottom Girls & Midnight Rider

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Written by Gary Hernandez

Mississippi Bones hails from Hardin County, Ohio, USA. Since their inception as a two-man studio endeavor, Bones has grown to six members, swarming the stage like a Lynyrd Skynyrd reunion. While geographically speaking, Ohio may be one a hell of drive from the Deep South, musically Mississippi Bones is a stone’s throw from the murky swamplands of its namesake.

Since 2010, Bones has cranked out a steady stream of albums and EPs—I count seven. They are a loud, bluesy, literate band that celebrates sci-fi, comics and counter culture. For instance, ‘Dungeon Hustle’ (Tracks) is a bow to the D&D crowd; ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?’ (Mississippi Bones) is inspired by Philip K. Dick’s novel of the same name—immortalized on the screen as Blade Runner; and ‘Outhouse Poet’ (2600 AD: And Other Astonishing Tales) is a blast of dark witticism aimed at that one a-hole everyone seems to have in their lives. Lines like “You’ve got a message people need to hear about as good as the stains in your underwear” will have you guffawing your brew right back into your red Dixie cup.

Recently, Bones released two EPs: More Astonishing Tales From . . . and Fat Bottom Girls & Midnight Rider. It seems like Astonishing got more marketing attention, while Fat Bottom sat by the punch bowl and watched the dance go on. I’m sure this is probably royalties related, but, damn, that girl needs to dance. So here goes.

In 1978, Queen released their seventh LP, Jazz. Like most Queen albums, Jazz confused a lot of people and left them questioning their assumptions about rock music. Nestled in that collection is a hell of a track that metal bands to this day love to toss out like a brisket at a Texas backyard barbeque—‘Fat Bottomed Girls.’ Mississippi Bones takes this tune, amps the riff, bottoms out the bass, adds deep, raspy vocals, and reveals the hard-rocking tune it was always meant to be. What it lacks in the impeccable vocal harmonies of Mercury and company, it makes up for in boot-stomping power chords.

Eight years prior to Jazz, the Allman Brothers Band released Idlewild South, their second album. If you were alive in the ‘70’s, had a radio, and lived anywhere south of the Mason-Dixon Line, you could likely recite every line of the ‘Midnight Rider’ like an evocation to a lesser god. Bones lays this iconic ballad out on a cold, hard slab, cranks it up to the dark opening in the castle tower, and jolts it with 60,000 watts of lightening. The result is an electric monster—by no means approximating the sheer genius of the original, but amplifying and intensifying the beast that was inside of it the whole time.

Mississippi Bones. If you haven’t given them a listen, do. If you appreciate resurrected beasts from the ‘70’s, check out Fat Bottom Girls & Midnight Rider. 8/10

Enjoy the tracks HERE!

 

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