Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears: Tell 'Em What Your Name Is! (Universal)

 |   |  <1 min read

Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears: Big Booty Woman
Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears: Tell 'Em What Your Name Is! (Universal)

You only need to hear a few bars of the first three tracks on this one to say "James Brown". And Black Joe and band out of Austin wouldn't deny the influence.

There's also a smattering of emotional Otis, the stab of Junior Walker saxophone, the funk of Johnny "Guitar" Watson, Howlin' Wolf blues and much more distilled into these 10 urgent tracks. Real sassy and sharp urban soul funk.

But there is something more which doesn't reveal itself until a little further in: these boys unleash some ragged garageband guitar-rock which sounds like it has come from some dirty rehearsal room in Detroit in the Sixties -- and Black Joe can yelp like the great Screamin' Jay Hawkins as much as James Brown, or conjure up the salacious spirit of the Blues Magoos and Van Morrison's Gloria, or the likes of the Dirtbombs or Dead Moon.

Yep, this is an album that almost trips itself in its references, but don't let that put you off. Recorded live in the studio (it sounds it) this is a band that may only make proper sense when you see them on stage. But this is next best thing: raw, loud and barely in control.

Turn it up to 11.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Gareth Thomas: Fizzy Milk (gareththomastunes.com)

Gareth Thomas: Fizzy Milk (gareththomastunes.com)

In a cover so good you want it album-size to frame, this second solo album by Auckland songwriter Gareth Thomas – formerly of Goodshirt – really does fizz with addictive pop which... > Read more

Ian McLagan: United States (Yep Roc/Southbound)

Ian McLagan: United States (Yep Roc/Southbound)

Many years ago it was my great pleasure to spend a bit of time with keyboard player Ian McLagan when he was in Auckland playing with an artist whom I have forgotten. McLagan -- who was, in the... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE BARGAIN BUY: The Cure; Classic Album Selection (Universal)

THE BARGAIN BUY: The Cure; Classic Album Selection (Universal)

The ridiculously good and very affordable Classic Album Selection -- which we have singled out already for its Motorhead and Thin Lizzy sets -- hits another peak with this, the first five Cure... > Read more

Rod Stewart: Singer, believe it or not

Rod Stewart: Singer, believe it or not

When Rod Stewart came to New Zealand in 1992 he wasn't doing any interviews. He was sick of questions about his then-wife Rachel Hunter. And so the shutters went up. I spoke with him. It was easy.... > Read more