If Radiohead is “Experimental Rock” then Punch Brothers are Experimental Bluegrass. Before any Radiohead-heads go ballistic over that comparison, try checking out Punch Brother’s cover of “Kid A.” As Radiohead covers go, it’s quite special. (At least deserving of a “seems legit.”)
The best part about Punch Brothers, though, is that they don’t just do covers. They have three albums of sheer awesomeness to unleash on their crowds. Their newest album, Who’s Feeling Young Now?, released in February, is their most Rock-induced album to date. Yes, the album includes a recorded version of their “Kid A” cover, but there is so much more to Who’s than that. A far cry from their 2008 debut with the four-part How to Grow a Girl suite, Who’s Feeling Young Now? is rife with less-complicated melodies and the kind of lyrics that are both easily understood and yet far from the simplicity found in mainstream music. Not every song is shiver-worthy, but each one is a solid contribution in its own right to an album that deserves a spot in everyone’s collection.
Punch Brothers are deserving of much more than just royalties, though. It’s hard to imagine someone listening to Punch Brothers and not becoming an instant fan. If their albums don’t earn them a spot amongst your favorites, try seeing them live.
PUNCH BROTHERS perform Saturday, Aug. 18 at Madison Theater in Covington.