Khruangbin and Leon Bridges make musical magic together on ‘Texas Moon’

The 3 members of Khruangbin and Leon Bridges stand in front of a window with blue shutters

Khruangbin and Leon Bridges Photo: Pooneh Ghana

The sonic alchemy of Fort Worth’s Leon Bridges and Houston’s Khruangbin could not be contained to a single EP. The Texas artists recently announced a follow-up to last year’s superb Texas Sun, the aptly titled Texas Moon, which will drop Feb. 18.

Touring in support of their own, recently released LP Mordechai, Khruangbin will perform Friday at the Factory in Deep Ellum. (Will there be a Bridges cameo, and a tease of tracks from Texas Moon? Bridges, who still lives in Fort Worth, isn’t currently on the road and hey … anything’s possible.)

“As far as an essentially instrumental band, these guys are kind of the top for me,” Bridges said in a statement. “I’m honored to have been the first singer that they’ve incorporated in their music.”

Texas Moon’s lead single, the sinuously funky “B-Side,” is also responsible for a first: All four musicians (Bridges, bassist Laura Lee, guitarist Mark Speer and drummer Donald “DJ” Johnson) appear together in a music video, filmed at the J. Lorraine Ghost Town near Austin.

The five-track collection includes an homage to Bridges’ late grandmother, “Doris,” which Johnson described in a statement as “very somber, very deep.”

“The song ‘Doris’ is about [Leon’s] grandmother making the transition from this world to the next realm,” Johnson said in a statement. “And when someone places that kind of work in your hands, the last thing you want to do is junk it up, overproduce it, or do too much. We treated it with the respect it deserved, and treated Doris with the respect she deserves.”

Hopefully, Texas Moon won’t be the last collaboration Bridges and Khruangbin undertake. Indeed, these EPs were originally intended to be a full-length album, but instead, according to press materials, the songs accumulated were split between these two releases.

“It’s like a short story instead of a bigger thing,” Lee said in a statement. “And it leaves room to continue having these stories together. It feels really special to me. It’s not Khruangbin, it’s not Leon, it’s this world we created together.”

Preston Jones is a freelance writer and regular contributor to KXT. 

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