It’s not the least bit surprising that Chattanooga, Tenn.’s Behold the Brave left its mark on the assembled multitude that gathered to witness its blazing MidPoint Music Festival set in Cincinnati at Mr. Pitiful’s last year. The band’s skronky Psychedelic Blues with a side of Soul and a sprinkle of Pop melodicism was an easy sell to local fans of the Buffalo Killers’ loping Psych Pop thunder and the Heartless Bastards’ quirky Indie Blues mutations (lead vocalist/guitarist Clayton Davis often hits a register that suggests Erika Wennerstrom’s vein-popping howl), but comparisons to the shivering intensity of Alabama Shakes and the swaggering bravado of Jack White offshoots like The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather are equally appropriate.
So far, Behold the Brave’s recorded output is relatively sparse. Davis, guitarist Zack Randolph, bassist Joel Parks and drummer Jeremiah Thompson have released 2010’s Lost in the Woods and 2012’s The Great American Challenge (featuring the scorching and infectious “Rocky Mountain Strawberry”), potent but all-too-brief EPs that were expanded to full-lengths. That’s not a huge catalog for a band that’s been together nearly seven years — dating back to 2008 when Davis, Thompson and Randolph started the band as students at Lee University in southeastern Tennessee — but the intervening years have seen Behold the Brave build a solid reputation as an incendiary live presence and their commitment to the road has superseded their need to sequester themselves in the studio.
If you didn’t catch Behold the Brave at MidPoint, you weren’t alone. The group drew the short time-slot straw and played against the Joseph Arthur/Wussy/Afghan Whigs bill at Washington Park. So now’s your chance to spend a little face-melting time with one of Tennessee’s most powerful young exports … and if you ask real nice, they might even haul out their amazing cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s “Cecilia.”
BEHOLD THE BRAVE plays at MOTR Pub Thursday, Jan. 8. Find tickets/more info here .