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Best Country Band (Alternative) 

The Vondrukes

A manic DIY ethos powers the Vondrukes. That and a whole lot of Uncle Tupelo — or at least the earliest, proto-punk version of the legendary Belleville band. It's a reference the Vondrukes will have to live with, even as these ill-mannered rockers slash and booze and wallow in gloriously over-the-top classic rockisms — in a single song like "RDP" it throws in Triumph head-banging, a Led Zep drum solo, Beatles-ish harmonic teases and Night Ranger-ready guitar wanking — and weird bouts of lyrical paranoia. That's not just the weed talking; punkabillies really are an endangered species. So we're lucky to still have rock & twang animals like the Vondrukes around.

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