Adam Hattaway and the Haunters: Woolston, Texas (digital outlets)

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Adam Hattaway and the Haunters: Woolston, Texas (digital outlets)
When Hattaway and the Haunters played at the 10thanniversary celebrations for Marty Duda's excellent 13th Floor website last week it was obvious why they would have appealed to New York State-raised Duda.

I suggested to him they sounded as American as the Band rocking out with a touch of Detroit/Iggy desperation and energy.

And they had two interchanging lead guitarists to really add colour, dynamics and voicings.

Duda stopped grinning and dancing long enough to agree.

A few night later at his wonderful one-man performance at the Hollywood in Avondale, Marlon Williams mentioned the band and said this album Woolston, Texas was out that very day and we should check it out.

This is the Christchurch band's third album – in total almost 40 original songs in about 30 months – and while not everything works (the strained falsetto on the soul-influenced alt.rock of Big Night takes some getting used to) their confidence in Southern rock'n'soul in the manner of the Stones (Wasting Our Time with a crafty Lou Reed-cum-pop twist), classic Seventies rock tropes (Sympathy, the chugging Fool to Tell), powered-up pop ballads (Bad Things, You Can't Win which wouldn't disgrace a Chris Bailey/latter-day Saints album) and much more is very persuasive.

I Need Your Needs is a catchy power pop song as good as any. 

At a time when rock music isn't commanding as large an audience share as it once did, the four-piece Hattaway and the Haunters are unashamedly a rock band – with two lead guitarists – and with deep knowledge of this music and where it came from.

And in that spirit they write sharp songs (these 10 fly by 30 minutes) with Cuarenta Y Cinco Formas (Forty-five Ways) in Spanish.

Produced by Ben Edwards and closing with a cover of Warren Zevon's outsider's ballad Mutineer at the end delivered much as a downbeat Dylan might have two decades ago, Woolston, Texas – natty Chch-TX title – is a fine album of rock'n'roll seen through various prisms.

As Marlon said, you should check it out.

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You can hear and buy this album from their bandcamp page here

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Woolston, Texas Tour Dates

April 9th - Rogue & Vegabond - Wellington
April 10th - Musicians Club - Whanganui *support from The Meanowls
April 16th - Blue Smoke - Christchurch *Support from Daniel Armstrong & the Monsoons
April 17th - Thirsty Dog - Auckland *Support from Daniel Armstrong & the Monsoons
April 24th - The Plant - Blenheim
May 21st - Bark! - Dunedin *Support from Tahu & the Takahes

May 22nd - Grainstore Gallery - Oamaru *support from Mads Harrop


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