Leaving the mild Southern winter in their Atlanta, Ga., hometown behind, the Black Crowes will embark on a 19-date junket through colder climates in support of By Your Side, to be released Tuesday.
The kick-off date is Feb. 11, when the band will play the Eagles Ballroom in Milwaukee before winding through the Midwest and then heading to the East.
The band will showcase such new tunes as “Kicking My Heart Around,” “Horsehead” and “Diamond Ring,” which find the group departing from the lengthy jams that marked its previous releases, according to guitarist Rich Robinson.
“It encompasses all four records, but definitely now it’s in a rock format. The songs are very succinct, not jammy rock songs,” Robinson said of the 11 tunes on the band’s fifth LP. “It’s a very rock record. We’re a rock band. In the middle of [1997's hippie-centric] Furthur Tour, we were like, ‘Hey, you know what? We’re a f—in’ rock band,’ and [singer Chris Robinson] was like, ‘I’m a f—ing lead singer.’ Something clicked, and we’re back writing rock songs, which is what we’re good at.”
The Black Crowes first appeared on the music scene in 1990 with Shake Your Moneymaker, which included a cover of Otis Redding’s “Hard to Handle” (RealAudio excerpt). That album won the band comparisons to such blues-rock acts as the Rolling Stones and the Faces.
In the past year, the Black Crowes shuffled their lineup, becoming a quintet by subtracting lead guitarist Marc Ford and original bassist Johnny Colt and adding bassist Sven Pipien (Mary My Hope) to a configuration that includes drummer Steve Gorman, keyboardist Eddie Harsch and the Robinson brothers.
Black Crowes Tour Dates:
Feb. 11; Milwaukee, Wis., Eagles Ballroom (The Rave)
Feb. 12; Minneapolis, Minn., State Theatre
Feb. 13; St. Louis, Mo., American Theatre
Feb. 14; Chicago, Ill., Aragon Ballroom
Feb. 16; Grand Rapids, Mich., DeVos Hall (Grand Center)
Feb. 17; Akron, Ohio, E.J. Thomas Performing Arts Hall
Feb. 19; Detroit, Mich., Detroit State Theatre
Feb. 20; Columbus, Ohio, Veterans Memorial Auditorium
Feb. 21; Cincinnati, Ohio, Taft Theatre
Feb. 23; Boston, Mass., Orpheum Theatre
Feb. 25; New York, N.Y., Roseland Ballroom
Feb. 28; Albany, N.Y., Palace Theatre
March 4; Lexington, Va., University Center (Washington & Lee University)
March 5-6; Philadelphia, Pa., Electric Factory
March 7; Carlisle, Pa., Anita Tuvin Schlecter Auditorium (Dickinson College)
March 12; Waterville, Maine, Wadsworth Gym (Colby College)
March 13; Uncasville, Conn., The Events Center (Mohegan Sun Casino)