I Was Told There'd Be Whiskey didn't start out as a serious act, but it didn't take long for the band's mix of punk and country to clean up its act.
In early 2011 Mickey Kawa (guitars, vocals), Chris Stylen (guitar), Kevin Shumway (bass), and Zach Shipp (drums) started goofing around, but when they were offered a show in April, they had to quickly write enough songs for a full set.
What they came up with works. Accented by cowbell and tambourine, knotted velveteen guitar, and throaty, whiskey-soaked vocals that blend country and punk, I Was Told There'd be Whiskey falls in line with like-minded genre miners like Drive by Truckers, Against Me!, Wilco, and The Gaslight Anthem.
They shine on their debut, self-titled LP, but do so even more in a live setting, where their ramshackle punk rock roots simmer under the rootsy arrangements.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.