The Subdudes

The Subdudes may not be among the New Orleans musical legends that the average Joe could immediately name. But examine the band's track record, which stretches back a couple of decades, and its seamless blend of riveting rock and roll, nimble rhythms, and sinewy roots. It's clear the Subdudes have earned their standing as one of the Crescent City's best and brightest.

For starters, it takes a certain amount of panache to take a scenario as awful as Hurricane Katrina and translate it into the most basic human terms. On the band's latest album, Street Symphony — its first since that devastating debacle — it does just that. Here, the boys employ their Southern style and smooth grooves to convey vivid tales filled with resilience and determination. The result is a series of insightful yet engaging narratives that spin tragedy into triumph. Yet for all that reflection, the Subdudes' sound still conveys an innate sense of celebration. And that's the main reason the Subdudes remain the cool dudes they are.

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Lee Zimmerman