For more than a dozen years, Massy Ferguson have proudly planted their boots on both sides of the country-rock divide, carving out their own brand of amplifed Americana along the way. Based in Seattle, they've become international torchbearers of a sound that's distinctly American, with a touring history that spans nine different countries. On their latest release, Joe's Meat and Grocery, which cracked the Top 40 on the US Americana Charts in 2022, they double down on their rock & roll roots, mixing bar-band twang with raw, guitar-driven bang. Gluing those sounds together is the songwriting partnership of bass-playing frontman Ethan Anderson and guitarist Adam Monda, whose songs spin stories of small-town adolescence, big-city adulthood, and the long miles of highway that stretch between. Long before Massy Ferguson played their first show 2006, Anderson spent his childhood outside Seattle in the rural reaches of the Pacific Northwest. His parents were strictly religious, and he found himself at the local Pentecostal church almost every weekend, watching as his fellow congregants beat their Bibles and spoke in tongues. The spirit didn't move him in quite the same way. In search of his own kind of clarity, Anderson turned to music: first to the country and folk artists whose songs reminded him of home, and later to the hard-edged rock bands who ruled the roost in Seattle, where he'd eventually relocate as an adult. Those two stylistic extremes — country and rock & roll — continue to rear their heads in his music. The details are rich, the context is implied, and the writing is stunningly simple, like the literal minimalism of Anderson's favorite authors: Cormac McCarthy, Raymond Carver, Dennis Johnson, and Willie Vlautin.
Thu 3/23 11:30pm: Massy Ferguson at Hannah's