Hearsay: Tuesday November 25, 2008
Relentless Beats

Most rock drummers are either really fast or really musical. Few are … unique. Fort Worth has its share of fast drummers -- for whatever reason, there seems to be a premium on speed, possibly because most of the better bands here are loud and hard. And Cowtown also has a lot of musical drummers, but unique ones? We can probably count ‘em on one hand. Dove Hunter’s Quincy Holloway comes to mind as a rock drummer with a singular vision. So do the Decoding Society’s admittedly jazz-tinged Ronald Shannon Jackson, The Great Tyrant’s Jon Teague, and PFFFFT!’s Clay Stinnett. And, until he relocated to Los Angeles a couple of years ago, Jordan Richardson. Not quite an animalistic basher but in no way easy on the skins, he has a trademark move in which he rains his sticks down from high above his head, even when just keeping the beat. The former drummer for Soviet Space and now apparently Oliver Future -- the band for which he left Fort Worth -- may have indeed accomplished his goal: Richardson, according to Rolling Stone, is now part of the Relentless7, big-time singer-songwriter and electric slide-guitar god Ben Harper’s new band that debuted a couple of weeks ago at a show in Ohio. Rounded out by guitarist Jason Mozersky and former Ollie Future bassist Jesse Ingalls, the backing trio will be heard on Harper’s forthcoming album, White Lies for Dark Times, and also at the upcoming 20th annual Christmas Jam in North Carolina and on the subsequent new-album tour. “It’s absolute, unapologetic rock music,” Harper told R.S. “There’s some Queen in there and some Floyd-isms, and there’s a good dose of blues and soul.” The Innocent Criminals, Harper’s original backing band, is still in the fold, but Harper said, “For the moment, it’s just time to do something else.” Big props to Richardson. And to Harper for having the good sense to recognize a unique talent when he sees – and hears -- it. White Lies is scheduled to be released in May. Visit www.myspace.com/relentlessseven, where you’ll find two covers – one of Prince’s “Purple Rain,” the other of Led Zeppelin’s “Good Times, Bad Times” – and an old Harper original. … The Wednesday before Turkey Day is probably the biggest party time of the year. You don’t have work the next day, and most of your friends and family members who’ve moved away have come home to roost. Either to cope or celebrate, you take to the bars. For that special friend or relative who grew up nearby but now lives in some hip ville like New York, L.A., or Boise – and now looks down on us – Lola’s Saloon (2736 W. 6th St., 817-877-0666) has just the thing: Alt-country bangers Dove Hunter are awesome enough to send civic pride thrumming through your hayseed heart and send your pretentious interloper scouring his or her memory banks for anything nearly as cool “back home.” (And ya just know that when that jerk goes “back home” and turns all of his or her friends on to Dove Hunter, you won’t get one ounce of credit.)

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