band crush: tyler and the shakedown

move over, jack white—we’ve got our new guitar god.

by rebecca willa davis

We have an identity crisis to thank for Tyler Bryant and the Shakedowns. It all started when Bryant was in first grade and saw a video of Elvis performing. "I saw him and I was like, Oh my God, I have to be Elvis," remembers the Texas native. "I dyed my hair black, my mom made me his shiny gold jacket, I started signing all my papers as 'Elvis Presley,' and I got a guitar." Though eventually he gave up the act, the guitar stuck. Now, 10 years since he first went electric (it was when he was 11, which is still kind of nuts to think about), Bryant is finally putting his--and his band's--music out on record.

The group, which features another guitar player, a bassist, and a drummer (almost all friends of Bryant's), plays the sort of deep-rooted, twang-with-an-edge rock'n'roll that takes a page from the likes of, well, Elvis, along with all of the other blues-obsessed guitarists who came up after him, all the way up to Jack White. "What you see is what you get with us," explains Bryant, adding, "It's loud and in your face, and then it's also very roots-y at certain points."

That's what they sought out to capture on their debut album Wild Child (out January 22), which they recorded "fast and furious[ly]" in Nashville over the course of just 13 days. "It's an organic sounding record--we didn't use any studio magic, really," notes the guitarist. In fact, it's that throwback style of music that most attracts Bryant, particularly in the age of the Internet: "That's what I love about the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and Aerosmith: You couldn't log into Facebook and see from 20 minutes ago, 'Hey we just got off our jet!' They just look like these larger-than-life figures."

And though Bryant has in fact already rubbed elbows with a few of his icons--Tyler Bryant & the Shakedowns have shared the stage with the likes of Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck--he's just trying to enjoy the ride. As he puts it, "I'm 21-years-old, touring the world with my best friend, feeling a little crazy."

Hear what we mean below--we've got a FREE download of the track "Lipstick Wonder Woman," off of the upcoming Wild Child. Visit tylerbryantmusic.com for more info.