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Double Down with Two Nights of the Old 97’s

October 23rd, 2012

Along with bands like Uncle Tupelo, Wilco and the Jayhawks, Old 97’s have been at the forefront of the alt-country scene since forming in Dallas two decades ago. And over the years, two things about the quartet—Rhett Miller (vocals and guitar), Ken Bethea (guitar and vocals), Murry Hammond (bass and vocals) and Philip Peeples (drums and vocals)— remain true: They have no shortage of original material and they’re a high-energy live band that leaves it all onstage every night. It’s hard to believe the group’s third album, Too Far to Care, which so deftly walks the line between twangy Texas country and mainstream popular music that it, perhaps, represents the perfect Venn diagram of those who equally love country and rock, came out 15 years ago. But it’s true. And the Old 97’s (above, doing “Timebomb,” Too Far to Care’s lively opening track, for KEXP FM) are out on the road celebrating its anniversary by playing the acclaimed album in its entirety plus a second set of hits. See them, along with Salim Nourallah and Rhett Miller, tonight at Webster Hall and tomorrow night at Music Hall of Williamsburg.