The Bottle Rockets
Hometown: St Louis, MO
"Revered nearly as much as Uncle Tupelo and its offshoots – no coincidence, given that Rockets leader Brian Henneman roadied for Tupelo, performed on its revered March 6-10, 1992 and played lead guitar on the first Wilco album. With an aesthetic that rediscovered the guitar-powered dynamics of Southern rock even as it kept the honkytonk faith, the Bottle Rockets quickly carved out their own path in the burgeoning Americana scene, one that celebrated rock & roll power as much as whip-smart storytelling." --The Big Takeover
"Long before the arrival of (current Wilco guitarist)Nels Cline's sophistication, the sound of early Wilco — and late period Uncle Tupelo — was built around the gutsy guitar heroics of Brian Henneman… but when he finally got the chance to prove himself as a singer-songwriter with the Bottle Rockets he added a caustic counterpoint to the typically more earnest work of alt-country's most prominent names."--Exclaim
"A combustible combination of the Replacements and Buck Owens." -- Esquire
“Before the Drive-By Truckers got in gear, when Ryan Adams was still settling in Whiskeytown, the Bottle Rockets were setting off musical M-80s as perhaps the most under-appreciated roots-rock/Americana band of the mid-‘90s.” -Reuters/Hollywood Reporter
"The Bottle Rockets kicked my ass the first time I got to hear them." -Lucinda Wililams
“If Uncle Tupelo is the Beatles of the alt-country movement, the Bottle Rockets are certainly the Rolling Stones.” -Spartanburg Herald-Journal
The band was unceremoniously birthed in 1992 and they very quickly became a forebearer for the new style alongside Uncle Tupelo, Old 97’s, and Whiskeytown.
When The Bottle Rockets hit the scene in the mid ‘90s, the world wasn’t quite sure what to do with them. With their punk-rock pedigrees and arena-rock energy, their tougher-than-Springsteen storytelling and their romantic hearts sewn bare on their denim sleeves, the pride of Festus, MO confounded musical generalities as they laid waste to clubs across the Midwest and then, soon enough, the nation.
Back in a time when the critical language and resulting idioms for mixing underground rock with country was in its infancy, The Bottle Rockets were fearlessly – and quite loudly – playing rootsy weepers alongside howling rave ups, with singer/guitarist Brian Henneman leading the charge as some sort of Roger Miller of the indie set. It’s a sound propped up (and hopped up) just as much on the pillars of Leslie West & Mountain as it was on those of the Ramones and the Clash.
"Let's Stop Kicking Our Hearts Around" with Sheri Hurst on Hard-Headed Woman: A Celebration of Wanda Jackson
"Every Kind of Everything" on For A Life of Sin
"Get Down" on Hell-Bent
"A Living Hell" on For a Decade of Sin: 11 Years of Bloodshot Records
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