I always had an affinity for bands with powerful female lead singers who know how to command the stage. Legends such as Patti Smith, Ann Wilson and Chrissie Hynde are certified badasses. Courtney Kirby from the band FREAKABOUT has a similar style and essence that elevates the music that surrounds her voice. She’s powerful, sensual and knows how to bite when needed.
Kirby is a force to be reckoned with in the band's long awaited debut entitled Don’t We All but the music is by no means lackluster either. The rest of the band is comprised of Aaron Galvan (guitar), Alex Drvol (bass) and Zach Zoellner (drums). They usually rock out but always display a number of inventive aspects to their music that shouldn't go unnoticed. The band kicks out a surplus of changes on most of the songs. They never stay in one groove for too long and are also extremely dynamic. The band knows when to push and when to release making the songs all the more engaging.
The album begins with a thirty-seven second acapella intro that transitions seamlessly into “Blood Red.” It’s all about the vocals as Kirby goes from sounding seductive to having attitude all in under thirty seconds. The music reciprocates the attitude of the vocals. It’s biker bar style rock where the whiskey is welcome and so are the fights.
The next track “Never Have I Ever” picks up the energy and BPM. I thoroughly enjoyed the panning guitars during the verse but the climax that comes around the two-minute mark is a relentless assault of notes. The band starts plowing through a copious amount of changes including an acoustic guitar, bongo thing that you might miss if you aren’t paying attention.
It was during the fourth track “In This Mess” that I realized this band is consistent in terms of quality. There weren’t any kinks in the songwriting and the band continues to come at you with enough original riffs to make your head explode.
I was reminded of Queens Of The Stone Age on “Use You” while “Fatal Attraction” has some fun back and forth between the instruments. The band does a bit more of a sensitive side with “Hold On.” For the first two thirds of the song it revolves around an acoustic guitar and vocals. The sustain from the electric guitar was a nice touch which helped the atmosphere.
In a day and age when bands release their music as soon as possible it’s nice to see a group that really did their homework and got good before hitting the studio. Some things are worth the wait and Don’t We All is one of them.
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