Boozin’ with the Reverend

Andrew Harley
Special to the DailyJimbo Wallace plucks a fight on the upright bass.

The Texan trinity is led by James “The Rev” Heath on lead vocals and guitar, Jimbo Wallace on a bar-fightin’ bass and Scott Churilla on drums.

The group mixes rockabilly, surfer guitar and the energy of punk rock into a genre-shattering goulash of blasphemous gospel music. They glorify fast cars, women and barrels of booze on their endless tour.

“If you listen to the band’s catalog, you might say there are a few recurring themes found in our songs: beer, gin and tonic, whiskey, cocaine, tequila, martinis, marijuana, cigarettes, cars, more beer, pretty women, sermons, cats and dogs, the devil, Texas and Jimbo. Not to mention steak and dildos. All the good things in life,” Heath said.

The Reverend Horton Heat’s latest offering, “Lucky 7,” follows the same formula that the band’s had since their conception. It has car music: “Galaxy 500,” reminiscent of Charlie Ryan’s “Hot Rod Lincoln.” It has boozing music: “Loco Gringos Like a Party.” And it has humor: “Sermon on the Jimbo” and “You’ve Got a Friend in Jimbo.” The album adds up to another adrenaline-filled Reverend Horton Heat experimental cocktail. It burns as it goes down, which is good.

The Reverend Horton Heat released their first single, “Big Little Baby,” in 1988, they say they do 200 shows a year and have released seven albums since 1991.

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“I think it’s cool we’ve lasted this long. People still come out to see us play after all these years and all the shows and tours. It’s amazing. I’m excited as hell to get out and bring these new songs to life onstage. This is the most energetic batch of songs we’ve had since “Liquor in The Front.’ (Producer) Ed (Stasium) really helped us recapture that manic sound this time around. The guitar sound on the last record was real natural, and while it worked out well, we felt it was time to get back to chainsaw distortion,” Heath said.

The Reverend Horton Heat’s current tour rambles across the west for 23 shows in the next month. Most of the shows will be held at smaller venues insuring a feeling of intimacy as they incite a rockabilly riot.

“The Rev,” Jimbo and Scott bring their unique brand of whiskey rhythm and rock to 8150 tonight at 10.

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