Southern boys, up-to-date sound 

If you’ve ever wondered what eating biscuits and gravy and tossing a few back on the front porch sounded like, you may be in for a treat tonight in San Francisco.

South Carolina’s Ben Bridwell and his Band of Horses are spreading a Southern rock-inspired gospel across the land. The band’s show tonight at The Fillmore promises lots of hootin’ and hollerin’, but also a gentle tug at the heartstrings.

What will strike most listeners, whether you’ve been with Band of Horses since their Seattle roots or you’re hearing the band for the first time, is Bridwell’s ditties about the South, to which three of the founding members recently moved back. There was a hint or two of Southern roots on their first album — a "yeehaw" here, talk of Carolina and Savannah there. "Cease To Begin," the band’s latest LP, realizes that young-adult dream of returning home, where you bring with you the experience you gained "out there" and look upon familiar things in a revelatory way.

With the latest release, gone are the ethereal flowing scores of "Everything All the Time." What remains is a heavily reverb-laden vocal track in front of a big rock sound. If "Everything" was a trendy Italian loafer, "Cease to Begin" is a well-worn cowboy boot.

There’s also a whole lotta lovin’ goin’ on. Nearly every new track mentions an object of affection, whether it’s "no one’s gonna love you more than I do" or "I’ll marry my lover."

And in case you’re not hooked already, try this one on: A band with the audacity to suggest that "the world is such a wonderful place" has got to be worth a looksee, to say the least.

The overall effect is reminiscent of a more upbeat Red House Painters or The Decemberists with more personalized lyrics.

A mix of old and new is almost guaranteed live, making for a well-rounded evenin’ of sonic de-lights.

IF YOU GO

Band of Horses

Where: The Fillmore, 1805 Geary Blvd., San Francisco

When: 9 p.m. today

Tickets: $20

Contact: (415) 346-6000 or www.ticketmaster.com

jhunt@examiner.com

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Staff Report

Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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