by Robert Bell
SCOTT H. BIRAM, LYDIA LOVELESS
8 p.m. Maxine's. $5 adv., $7 door.
Back in January of aught-four, I was down in Austin, Texas, for a visit, and a friend of mine told me about a local dude, a singer and guitar player name of Biram. We went to some tiny little club up on North Loop and started in on some drinking. After about a half-hour, this gnarly-looking ragamuffin in a ball cap and a hoodie shuffles over to the corner, sets up an amp, plugs in a hollow body guitar, lays a tambourine down on the floor (for stompin' on) and proceeds to start hollerin' out all these twisted, distorto-punk blues. It went well with the drinking.
Now all these several years later, Biram still belts out the ragers, but he'll also write a country weeper that'll jerk the tears out of your head so hard you might catch whiplash. Exhibit A: "Still Drunk, Still Crazy, Still Blue." Still got it, has Biram, who's joined on this tour by his Bloodshot Records label mate Lydia Loveless, a fiery-haired singer/songwriter outta Ohio. She's just now recently old enough to drink on the legal, but can swing the heartache well above her years, and has earned comparisons to such illustrious performers as Loretta Lynn, Neko Case and Exene Cervenka.