Cabin Fever, the debut EP by BareHunter as the title suggests sounds like a band that has been in the garage (or cabin) finding its chops, crafting their songs, working on their performance skills and now is ready to burst out into the scene and show what they’ve created. What they’ve been working on is very, very good.
“Tropical Blues” opens with wailing harmonica and a groove that sounds like them jamming with Captain Beefheart and Bruce Springsteen. The song is a catchy garage-rock rhythm and blues song complete with harmonica interjections, steady tambourine, pounding drums, thundering bass and buzzy guitar that comes in very heavy for the instrumental break.
“Esmerelda” is a fast shuffle in with lots of energy and enthusiasm. The performance is a bit sloppy at times, but the energy holds the band through some missed hits and rhythms and makes for good bar band rock.
“What Are We Fighting For?” Is an electric-Dylan-esque blues-rock protest stomp that breaks into a metal instrumental flourish. The use of dynamics is very well executed and drives the lyrics and riffs home without abandon. It’s a quick and fast song and makes its point without overstaying it’s welcome, overselling or moving away from its intention.
The EP concludes with a live cut called “One Of These Mornings.” Though it doesn’t sound drastically different than the previous studio recorded tracks, it’s nice to hear the band maintain their energy in front of a live crowd and be able to support the bluesy heavy structure that they’ve created. The singer maintains the energy and annunciation of each word, the drums find an excellent balance between being crisp and having a edgy slosh, and the guitar and bass find a great interplay in their distorted riffs.
The band has great energy and performance skills. The production style fits their genre and they use and play with the sound of the sound well. This is a great sampler of hopefully more great songs to come
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