Few acts come as close to capturing the retro vibe of '70s classic arena rock as Salt Lake City's The Weekenders. You know what I mean: dinosaurs like Zep, Grand Funk and Skynyrd who use a little spit, blood and sweat to slather together some boogie and groove to soar over with soulful vocals and guitar leads. Raging Slab and The Brought Low did a fine job delivering those goods in the late '90s and 2000s, but most bands today trying to do it somehow manage to screw things up with too much pop or too much indie or too much something else that spoils the sauce.
Despite all the things it manages to nail, The Weekenders still doesn't quite get it right on its debut, Don't Plan On. For all the midtempo swagger, it gets a little tiresome by record's end because there isn't much variation in the pace. I'd like to hear these fellas cut loose on a couple tracks somewhere in excess of 120 bpm or so and just bust me in the face. Perhaps there is some of that with the group's second record, which is, reportedly, imminent. The debut is good enough to keep me curious about what's in store.
The Weekenders plays Stage 112 Sat., March 15, at 10 PM. $5.