Music » Critics' Picks

Or, the Whale

8 p.m. Wednesday, March 23. The Old Rock House, 1200 South Seventh Street.



Or, the Whale borrows its name from nineteenth-century literature; it's the second title of Moby Dick). However, the San Francisco band formed in a manner very particular to its moment in time and space: Craigslist. In 2006, lead singer Alex Robins and ex-guitarist/vocalist Matt Sartain posted an ad with the headline, "Wanna Form a Sweet Country Rock Band?" that netted them several other band members, including two female vocalists. Or, the Whale has released two albums of alt-country which recall the Drive-By Truckers while extolling the virtues of jimsonweed and literary references. And while the band may be influenced by those who have come before, its surprising touchstones belong to this generation — just listen to its slow, sinister take on Britney Spears' "Toxic."