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Two Gallants @ Neumos: A Hellacious Racket

Two Gallants laid waste to Neumos Monday night. An enthusiastic crowd of about 400 was treated to an hour-long set of old favorites, several new songs, a couple covers, and one ages-old 2Gs favorite recently unearthed. Adam Stephens' thousand-yard stare remains one of the most bracing in live music; his steely demeanor broke only for a moment, when he smiled big as Conor Kiley of opening band Broken Nobles crowd-surfed the mosh pit during "Las Cruces Jail." Tyson Vogel disappeared behind the drum kit and a curtain of sweat-damp hair, simultaneously nimble and explosive.

Musically, lyrically, there's more nuance in a single Two Gallants song than in most bands' entire catalog. After a two-year hiatus, the SF-based duo is back, and they are bad-ass. Monday night was proof that, despite current trends, Americana doesn't always equal sensitive strumming. Consumed by ghosts of Irish and Appalachian folk, murder-ballad blues, and basement-party punk, Two Gallants make a hellacious fucking racket.

They head into the studio this fall.

Photos by Morgan Keuler