Local Wire

Fabulous Thunderbirds @ Crescent Ballroom

As the song titles "Tuff Enough" and "Wrap It Up" suggest, you know what you're going to get from a Thunderbirds show: straight-ahead, bluesy rock 'n' roll. Having emerged from the Texas blues scene over 30 years go, the T-birds are a throwback to a simple form of rock. No irony here, which is a good thing if you're nostalgic for the '80s but not so nostalgic for their synths. Any question about how literal this brand of rock is? Check out the classic "Tuff Enough" video on YouTube: Hot chicks in chrome hardhats driving forklifts and handling pipe, the ladies so "tuff" the whole thing borders on homoerotic. The only thing missing is a ZZ Top and George Thorogood cameo. Remember Stevie Ray Vaughan? His brother Jimmie used to play with the T-birds back in the day, and, like his brother, his well-timed and executed Strat solos definitely defined the band. Only original member Kim Wilson is still with the band, but don't worry — the old dude is the shit, and he can shake it, too.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Mike Cryer