Photos, Review And Audio | Bustle Plays Other Shit | Brooklyn Bowl

Images by: Andrew Blackstein

Words by: Aaron Stein

Bustle In Your Hedgerow :: 08.31.2013 :: Brooklyn Bowl :: Brooklyn, NY

Check out Aaron's review below this gallery.

Is 10 years a long time or a short time? It does feel like a long time since Joe Russo, Marco Benevento and Scott Metzger (later to be joined by Dave Dreiwitz as Bustle In Your Hedgerow) first got together to play a seemingly one-off set of Led Zeppelin tunes on a boat cruise around New York. At the same time, 10 years doesn’t feel nearly long enough for four musicians that play together but every few months to get to be this good. But as they finished up a celebratory 3-day anniversary run at the Brooklyn Bowl Saturday night, billed as “Bustle plays other shit,” they were, indeed, that good.

Russo had hinted online that he wanted to play some Sabbath (“exorcise some demons”), so walking in midway through the show-opening “War Pigs” was no surprise. No, the surprise was that this was just the launch of a set covering Black Sabbath’s Paranoid album in its entirety. Anyone sick of the cover-a-whole-album thing yet? No, me neither, not by a long shot. The quartet brought the same skillful interpretation to Sabbath as they’ve done to Zeppelin, which is to say they totally ripped that material a new one. Besides the final “Fairies Wear Boots,” this was all-instrumental, heavy duty, bludgeoning rock and roll. All four guys were locked in tight like they’d been listening to this album since they were 12, jams sprouted throughout, growing gnarly with twists and turns and sharp thorny guitar-bass-keys sections. Every song had its surprises and head-banging inspirations, but I found the adventures leading out of “Iron Man” particularly awe- inspiring. Sure, the material is classic, but has it ever been played like that? Metzger was at the peak of his don’t-fuck-with-this-guitar prowess here; Dreiwitz seemed to be playing his bass with his shit-eating grin; and Marco was busy doing all those wonderful things that make him Marco. But all set long, it was Joe Russo running the show, dropping the quartet headlong into the dark and murky unknown just long enough before expertly guiding them back. Ten years ago, Russo was just a bad-ass drummer, maybe the baddest, but Saturday he was a force of nature, one half tempestuous rock god, one half level-headed bandleader.

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