The Devil Makes Three's perspective on vintage American blues is based on acoustic guitar, banjo and stand-up bass and draws its sound from ragtime, country, folk and rockabilly — played with the energy and attitude of punk rock.
"We're not really a genre-specific band," says frontman Pete Bernhard on the band's website. "I've actually had people come up to me and say, 'I don't listen to anything but hip-hop, but I love The Devil Makes Three.' So I think we've always tried to keep it so you can't really define our band. That always keeps things really exciting."
The Devil Makes Three will perform at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, at the Historic Ashland Armory, 208 Oak St. Jonny Fritz Corndawg and Joe Fletcher will open the show. Tickets cost $20 in advance and are available at Music Coop in Ashland, Bad Ass Coffee in Medford, Dragon's Lair and Listen Here in Grants Pass, www.ticketswest.com or by calling 800-992-8499. Tickets will cost $23 the day of the show.
Who: The Devil Makes Three
When: 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8
Where: Historic Ashland Armory, 208 Oak St.
Tickets: $20 in advance, $23 the day of the show
Call: 800-992-8499 or see www.ticketswest.com
Proof that mayhem can be found without a drummer, The Devil Makes Three features Bernhard on banjo, Cooper McBean on guitar and Lucia Turino on bass. "Our thinking is, 'Let's get people to have a good time and get together and go crazy,' " states the group's website. "They should treat seeing us like going to a punk-rock show, even though it's something that sounds considerably different."
Bernhard is swayed by Lightnin' Hopkins, Bob Dylan, Tom Waits and Robert Johnson. McBean takes inspiration from such folk fixtures as Reverend Gary Davis and Doc Watson, and Turino counts Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, The Pixies and Gillian Welch as influences.
All three members migrated to Santa Cruz, Calif., via New England. Fellow Vermonters, Bernhard and McBean (who became friends in eighth grade) played in punk bands but found common ground in acoustic, country- and bluegrass-inspired music. When they met New Hampshire native Turino out West, she taught herself to play stand-up bass, and The Devil Makes Three was born.
The group independently released its debut, eponymous album in 2002, then followed it in 2003 with "Longjohns, Boots and a Belt." The live album "A Little Bit Faster and a Little Bit Loose" came in 2006.
The albums garnered a wide spectrum of fans, and the band began playing to packed houses.
The Devil Makes Three signed with Milan Records and released "Do Wrong Right" in 2009. The album introduced the group to larger audiences through performances at such festivals as Bonnaroo in Tennessee and Outside Lands in San Francisco.
The group's live "Stomp and Smash" was released on the Milan label in October 2011. It was recorded during a two-night, sold-out stand at Mystic Theatre in Petaluma, Calif., and includes new tracks "This Life" and "They Call That Religion." A fourth studio album is set to be released this year.