Brownout!

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Critic's Pick Release Date: 2009-09-09

Grupo Fantasma better watch out — there’s a relatively new band in Austin that can do almost anything they do, only better: themselves. Brownout! is nothing but the funkier, instrumental alter ego for GF, which included some vocals in their sophomore album, Aguilas and Cobras, but stick to instrumentals live. Even though they’re known as a “funk band,” the Latin feel is intact, and the cumbia smell is all over the place. “Con el cuete,” for example, is not a cumbia, but the keyboards seem taken straight out of an old Santa Marta, Colombia, record.

I was close. “It’s a Farfisa organ, which was used in a lot of ’60s/early ’70s music and featured on a lot of old cumbia, particularly chicha music from Peru,” said guitarist Adrián Quesada in an email. “It’s got a psychedelic/surf sound to it.” After touring as GF under the wing of Michael Jackson’s worst nightmare, Brownout’s chops should be sharper than ever. “Playing funk music and getting the seal of approval from someone like `Prince` … it’s a huge honor and did wonders for our confidence.” 10pm, $10, Fri, Sep 11, Luna, 6740 San Pedro, lunalive.com.

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