Josh Roberts and the Hinges in Knoxville


Knoxville’s music scene just got a little bit better.  Friday, December 12th at Preservation Pub, Josh Roberts and the Hinges played to a small but dedicated crowd.  From Columbia, South Carolina, this was JRATH’s first trip to Knoxville.  They’ve traveled from Columbia to Asheville, and Nashville to Athens, but never made the pit stop between.  Roberts says it’s probably just because they never knew any bands here.

Please allow me to introduce.

Roberts admits he inadvertently comes back to certain themes with his music: home and away, life and death, the nature of the human spirit and the truth that exists underneath.

“I don’t try to do that.  Frankly, I think people write about nothing but that stuff and it’s a little pretentious.  But I just keep doing it,” says Roberts.

The Hinges’ second album, My War Cry is Amor is a reflection of that.

“I took that line from Joseph Campbell, who is a writer of mythology—books that really explore the nature of human spirituality and all throughout time and history, and the interests that lie beneath it all.  That line is lifted out of “The Power of Myth” by Joseph Campbell.”

Just listening to lyrics, Roberts may be the thinking man’s rock and roller, but don’t let that scare you.  There are layers to the music.  What starts out as a plodding commentary on mankind’s destructive nature could just as easily turn into a light-hearted romp, then a sweeping, epic jam with no lyrics to get in the way.

I listened to a handful of songs from the band’s MySpace page and website before the show, but had no idea what I was actually in for.  The banjo and southern twang belie the rock and roll at times.  It’s sort of the duality of Josh Roberts.

Some songs have a hint of Americana, but don’t tell Josh.  He prefers the broader term: rock and roll.

“That’s definitely what I call it.  People want me to specify, and I’m like, ’No.  That’s why I use that term.  So I don’t have to specify’”, Roberts says.

“So you know, just think the broadest term possible…rich rock and roll.”


~ by jessiekrueger on May 5, 2009.

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