Vandoliers & Rob Leines at Volcanic
Tue, Oct 19, 2021 at 8pm
- ALL AGES
Vandoliers are the next wave of Texas music. The six-piece Dallas-Fort Worth group channels all that makes this vast state unique: tradition, modernity, audacity, grit, and—of course—size. Forever puts it all together for an enthralling ride down a fresh Lone Star highway.
Produced and recorded by Adam Hill (Low Cut Connie, The Bo-Keys, Deer Tick, Don Bryant, Zeshan B) at American Recording Studios in Memphis, TN, the band’s third album (and first with Bloodshot) Forever is a mix of youthful and defiant punk, rugged Red Dirt country, and vibrant Tejano. The full-length’s 10 songs blend emblematic rock ‘n’ roll with bold horns, violin, and a slather of twang reflecting where the band is from, where they’ve been and, eventually, where they’ll be headed. It’s regional and universal all the same.
“I wrote a series of songs about my life and gave it to the best musicians I know to flesh out,” says lead singer and guitarist Joshua Fleming. “I spent over a year writing by myself, with friends and mentors, and we spent just as long filling out arrangements and writing scores. We wrote horn and fiddle parts on a trio tour through the mountains of New Mexico, Wyoming and Montana.”
One of those mentors is fellow Dallas-Fort Worth musician Rhett Miller of Old 97’s. The influence and tutelage of Miller and his bandmates helped sharpen Vandoliers’ Texas-bred, roots-based punk rock.
“Before the band started diving into the new material, I sent Rhett a bunch of acoustic phone demos,” says Fleming. “Being the amazing person he is, he sent me back a 3,000-word email of advice that read like a master class in the art of songwriting. Beyond their influence musically, they’ve really taken us under their wing, letting us play shows with them and giving us all kinds of advice along the way.”
"It's hard for me to sit still," admits Rob Leines, the country-rock frontman and blue-collar road warrior who regularly spends more than 200 nights a year onstage, bashing out a mix of Telecaster twang, guitar-driven grit, and southern storytelling.
Long before he paid tribute to the touring lifestyle with albums like 2021's Blood Sweat and Beers, Leines crisscrossed the country as a child. The son of a military man, he was born in Georgia and spent time in both Utah and California before returning to the motherland, where he graduated high school and began working as a whitewater raft guide. Leines loved the South — its waterways, mountains, and great outdoors — and although he'd eventually move back to California, those southern roots would always play a role in his music.
Following his 2018 debut, Bad Seed, and the 2020 concert album Live in Richmond at the National (recorded during a rowdy night in Virginia, opening for Whiskey Myers), Blood Sweat and Beers finds Leines occupying the intersection between outlaw country and southern rock. It's a record that mixes tattooed twang, hardscrabble honky tonk, Appalachian rock & roll, and roadhouse roots music into the same pot, filled with songs that spotlight the highs, lows, victories, vices, and vixens that come with a life spent on the move.