Music » Critics' Picks

Strange Boys

8 p.m. Tuesday, December 4. The Cavern at Fort Gondo.



Somewhere between the buttons and the sunny afternoon, you'll find Austin's Strange Boys. Mining an overlooked vein of '60s inspiration, the band forges the same pop/R&B alloy (and the same combination of ragged blues and wide-eyed heart) that made the original "beat groups" so intriguing. A lot of their Crawdaddy Club vibe stems from Ryan Sambol's odd vocal approach: now a mumble, now a whine and always vulnerable even when he tries to play rough. But the band's sturdy, unpretentious swing helps too. Yes, guitar solos do mean more in smaller doses. If the Strange Boys follow the same timetable as its forebears, the band will dabble in psychedelia for a few years, then become a stadium-filling global phenomenon. For now, you can catch them at — where else? — the Cavern.

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