North Mississippi Allstars

Friday, January 20, at Gypsy Tea Room

Luther Dickinson and his brother Cody come genuinely draped in Southern musical kudzu, being the offspring of renegade producer and artiste Jim Dickinson (whose adventures span from playing piano on the Rolling Stones' "Wild Horses" to producing the most kick-ass Replacements album, Pleased to Meet Me). As members of the North Mississippi Allstars, they mix it up with everyone from John Hiatt to Lucinda Williams to Otha Turner to Robert Randolph. And there are times onstage when this trio whips up moments that recall the heights of the Allman Brothers Band. But their greatest charm--brewing blues, boogie, jam-band rock and hints of even their punk past together into a concoction that, after a few brews and tokes, can be utterly intoxicating--remains their Achilles heel, as the product of their prodigious ability, diversity and youthful zeal sometimes feels diffuse and scattershot. But one day during a show not far in their future--maybe even this night--they'll firmly catch a groove and hit those notes that make the band playing them sound, at that moment, like the world's greatest.

 
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