Cactus coolers
Cactus coolers

This Week in Winning Musical Makeovers

If Cowboy Buddha and Walter Clevenger & the Dairy Kings were to morph into one joyous band, the likely consequence would resemble Orange County's own Limbeck. Featuring frontman Robb MacLean, guitarist Patrick Carrie, bassist Justin Entsminger and new drummer Jon Phillips, Limbeck mixes bouncy power pop with lonesome, cinematic alt.-country in surprisingly simple yet stylish ways.

Limbeck's latest release, Let Me Come Home, unleashes dollops of jangly guitar chords and memorable melody lines that anchor each song's foundation. But the toe tappin' slows down just enough for a few languorous, sweeping offerings, such as "Watchin' the Moon Rise Over Town," a ballad destined for the next spaghetti-western revival. Who knew this punk-turned-Americana-mini-juggernaut would acquire such a deft touch on the mandolin, pedal-steel guitar, banjo and Hammond organ?

While the boys should challenge themselves to composing new subject matter that digs deeper than mere homesick snapshots from the road, the Limbeck soundscape has unquestionably blossomed from its noisy, three-chord punk beginnings. Why not in the meantime savor the beginnings of Limbeck's winning musical makeover?

Limbeck perform with the Honorary Title, Koufax and Jeff Klein at Chain Reaction, 1652 W. Lincoln Ave., Anaheim, (714) 635-6067; Fri., 7:30 p.m. All ages.


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