Friday, May 30, 2008
Tonight @ the Social - 8 p.m.
There’s a temptation for young bluegrass bands, especially those rooted in the jam-rock scene, to exaggerate the genre’s rural qualities, playing up the twang and speeding up the tempos until they’re left with an unflattering sendup of the music they purport to pay homage to. Taking a more natural approach to acoustic roots music is Junior League, a Washington, D.C. band with Milwaukee ties (guitarist Elias Cohn hails from Shorewood). Without skimping on the fiddle or the mandolin, the group rides a steadier, more contemporary groove, following much the same formula that made Nickel Creek’s best work click. The honeyed vocals of banjoist Lissy Rosemont make their songs go down especially easy. In advance of their noon appearance at RiverSplash! tomorrow, Junior League plays an 8 p.m. gig at the Social.