Every time you read about a band sounding like another band, chances are that the so-called derivative band doesn’t even listen to the act to which they’re being compared. Such is the case with the Austin, Texas-based garage revivalists, The Strange Boys, whose singer Ryan Sambol has ceaselessly been compared to Tom Petty.
“We’ve never really listened to him,” says Sambol. “Maybe it’s a Dylan thing. Both Tom and I trying a Bob job.”
Sambol’s demeanor in-person is one of quiet confidence and charm, but when it comes to playing live, he and his bandmates, which includes his brother Phil on bass, Greg Enlow on guitar and Mike La Franchi on drums, tear it up.
The latest Strange Boys album is called “Live Music,” which is not to say it was recorded in concert, but that it rhymes with “give music,” an appropriate code for the band and the exchange they have with their audience.
“If we’re playing well and looking like we’re having fun people usually loosen up and start to move around,” says Sambol.
Crowds move around quite a bit at Strange Boys shows; certainly more than at a typical indie rock show. Sambol says of which cities are the dancingest, “Madrid dances, Paris moves, Fort Wayne Indiana gets way down.”