When i moved to Austin in 2001, there was one band that set the gold standard of Austin Prog: Brown Whörnet. They were like Mr Bungle, but they were funny, prolific, possibly even more eclectic, and I could go see them several times a year. By that time, they had already been around for about a decade and it seemed like they must have practiced months for every performance because each show was a baffling whirlwind of precisely confusing noise and practiced improv punctuated by unfathomable tightness. Witnessing them live was like visiting some mysterious exotic culture which just happened to be a funhouse mirror version of our own.
Over the years I got to meet the folks in Brown Whörnet, hang out with them, listen to their other bands and projects and even play with them on a few occasions, most notably with the drummer Philip White in Lick Lick for the past 3 years or so. While some of the mystery dissipated with familiarity (“how the hell did you do that?… Oh that’s how”), the stature of this legendary band did not. And of course, they kept making great music this whole time.
So when they asked me to sit in with them I sort of peed myself a little. I am playing with Brown Whörnet on Friday. I’ll be covering 2nd electric guitar parts along with Eric Roach on Acoustic and Banjo and Greg Yancey on Bass. It’ll be a 10-piece band playing rock, funk, jazz, metal, punk, prog, noise, and nonsense. And we’re going to do it in the dark.