Things can get really dark in the backwaters of Alabama, a swath of territory this guttural punk-blues trio is mighty familiar with. Although Verbena's members don't wear Delta influences on their sleeves, the band's music is vividly colored with stains you can only get from drunken rolls on dirt floors. Frontman Scott Bondy is more of a yelper than a singer -- with more than a passing similarity to Kurt Cobain on songs like "Way Out West," which gains added emotional punch from an eerie, organ-laced intro, and "It's Alright (Jesus Told Me So)," but that's well suited to the muzzy surroundings here. La Musica Negra is considerably less polished than the band's last outing, 1999's Into the Pink, with rough edges dragging through murky waters on "Devil in Miss Jones" and "Me and Yr Sister," the latter of which flaunts a particularly pelvic-directed rhythm. Unlike many modern purveyors of thudding rock, Verbena don't actively ape Alice in Chains, but Bondy's desolate worldview and the sinister glint that emanates from the band's riffage mark them as kindred spirits in the "none more black" stakes.