Here’s the self-titled debut full-lengther by Auckland-based rock/metal/riffers Skinny Hobos. It’s good too. Charging out of the gates with Sevenatenine, which opens in a Sabbath-meets-Alice In Chains way, with a bit of the windswept stoner rock of the Queens/Kyuss nature before losing the meandering coolness and lurching on over into a relentless riff.
That guitarist/vocalist Alex and drummer/vocalist Sam can summon this much potency, this much energy, well that’s the magic here – so often duos feel like a novelty, likeeveryone sold their soul to the crayon-on sound-collages of Jack White. But not here. This is full of Rage Against The Machine’s big, pouncing, riff-crunches (The Merchant of Tirau) and has smoky charm (Number Three) that finds a common ground between Queens of the Stone Age and ZZ Top one minute, that enjoys a Black Crowes-like “classic rock”-referencing swagger the next (Jokers & Fools).
If I just looked at the cover of this, just heard the album/band name, just heard about the concept I’d like figure it wasn’t for me, declare myself out. But this has been a nice surprise. There’s no real trick to it though – it’s just the product of many years of hard work, regular gigging and a distillation of all the right sounds. Somewhere in there is the band’s own voice. That will become more apparent know the decks have been cleared with this vital, urgent, surprising and wholeheartedly wonderful first effort.
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