Hype can be a wonderful or terrible thing. Hype can ruin bands or send them to stratospheric heights. Sometimes you have to step back and ask if what you read is true or if it is a load of bull. For months I had been reading about this band and noticed they popped up at some notorious festivals to much acclaim. Then a single was played on the radio and something pulled me in; barring all the hype I had to give them a listen, and I’m very glad I did.
Many people believe that we all have souls but very few of us have soul. By that I mean, when they sing you can tell it is coming from their toes — and Brittany Howard is full of soul. As the singer for this quartet, she belts out notes and encapsulates so much emotion you wonder if she cried while the album was recorded. The band backs her up and helps her along the way with bassist Zac Cockrell and drummer Steve Johnson giving some perfect rhythm while Heath Fogg layers on some smooth guitar boogie.
For some proof you should try: “Hang Loose”, “Rise to the Sun”, “Heartbreaker”, “Be Mine” and the single “Hold On”. Her convictions are real, and I’ll be damned if you aren’t singing along after the second or third time. There is something special about this band, and when the vocals, drums, guitar and bass are all grooving together you can’t help but sway along.
Are you still reading this? Just go out and buy this one in any format you can, this is the type of music that needs to be out there for people to hear. Nothing is processed and everything sounds fresh. Trust me, Avid Reader, when I say that sometimes you need to believe the hype and this is one of those sometimes.