I'm not sure if there is anything better in rock music than the Sadies. They first came into my ears in 1999 when they were still releasing music on Bloodshot Records. Their fierce take on surf and country was, at least to me, the best thing going. I don't like top 40. I'm over classic rock, and I've never been a fan of anything watered down and geared toward the masses. For someone that grew up listening to rock radio and all the ilk that comes with it, from Styx to the same handful of Rolling Stones songs that are shoved down your throat until the discovery of college rock and its wealth of wonderful 1980's obscurity, The Sadies were exactly what I needed to continue distancing myself from the crap that is such a major part of the worlds output of music.
50 second blasts of hyper tempo reverb drenched surf guitar, paired with psychedelic country music and garage laced noise were the bulk of their first three records. The move to Yep Roc Records in 2002 was, thankfully more of the same.
They remain capable of being a commanding headliner, or a respectful backing band for the indie circuit; Neko Case, Jon Langford, Jon Doe and even R and B senior citizen and ex-con Andre Williams have all claimed them as their own.
It took me years to finally see them. Shows in Denver always came at odd times; I was either out of the state, leaving the state, or just returning. November of 2011 finally gave me the opportunity to see them in Northern Virginia. I was filled with a hype from friends and acquaintances that they were worth whatever cheap ticket price came with their name, and after one song I was sold and decided that if The Sadies were ever going to be within a 500 mile distance of wherever on Earth I may be, I'd be there.
They've out-played and out-classed just about every other band I've seen. They carry a sense of grace found in modern country, from devil stitched nudie suits to the warm regard for the audience found in modern bluegrass, to the rowdy and recklesness put forth by modern day garage bands half their age. If they're playing an original they're leaving it all on stage; if they choose to play a cover it's something you've likely never heard by a cover band. Every studio release is as good as their last, and I count the days for when the next one is released.
I highly encourage you to support the Sadies, or if perhaps you like to continue to listen to that Blind Melon record over and over, well that's your choice. Big Mac's really aren't that good.
The photo of Dallas Good was taken by me at Brooklyn Bowl in Brooklyn New York in June 2012.
Purchase their 2010 release "Darker Circles" and other fine recordings by The Sadies by clicking the image below. You won't regret it.