Byrne-ing man

David Byrne has spent most of his musical career defying categories. From the quirky art rock of his early work with the Talking Heads to the Brazilian rhythms of his later solo releases, Byrne’s music has never fit tidily into one genre. The same can be said about his new album, Grown Backward, which features elements of opera and classical music. Some music critics say this album is Byrne’s most personal to date, pointing to incidents such as 9/11 as well as the breakup of his 15-year marriage. But like any good songwriter, Byrne lets the listener decide the meaning of the songs. Now on the U.S. leg of his “My Backwards Life” tour, Byrne will make a stop in Reno. He will perform backed by “chamber rock” quartet The Tosca Strings. Audiences and music critics have applauded Byrne’s mix of electric guitars and strings, particularly the reinterpretations of Talking Heads classics. “A reconfigured ‘Psycho Killer’ benefited from increased tension, courtesy of strings that ominously crept in a pattern similar to the theme of Jaws,” wrote a Chicago Tribune reviewer. Perhaps Byrne will play this version when he performs at Hawkins Amphitheater at Bartley Ranch Regional Park, 6000 Bartley Ranch Road. The show begins 8 p.m. Aug. 17. Tickets are $50-$60. Call 828-6642 or visit—Kelley Lang