• Sandy Carson
  • Wayne Hancock

Back in the mid-to-late 90s it often felt that alt-country was genuinely a big tent, happy to accommodate all sorts of musicians dealing with roots music, whether they were reviving various old styles or colliding them, whether musicians recorded for indie labels or major labels. Those feelings have been shattered by the endless fragmentation and microcategories that have emerged in the wake of the Internet, where monoculture was trampled like dust. On Thursday night two of the scene’s most acclaimed and popular acts from that era—Wayne “The Train” Hancock and the reunited Mavericks—perform in Chicago. Listening to new records by both of them has been something of a flashback; they still sound pretty much the same, but that music feels marginalized in 2013.