Monday, September 2, 2013

Up From the Underground: The Boston Boys - "Keep You Satisfied"

This  Boston based band sounds like they belong preforming on a corner of Bourbon Street with the blues inflected roustabout title track that sets their e.p. sailing. Boston is a college town and while from their chops some of the boys obviously attended Berklee, they are more focused on getting the frat party moving than dissecting jazz riffs.

The pop hooks to "Amelia" create an odd juxtaposition between a Justin Timberlake groove and Dave Matthews, while they might be trying to capture more of a roots music sound by the addition of a mandolin and a fiddle, they are used in a manner much more similar to Dave Matthews than anything on the Oh Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack.  The vocals carry r&b nuances in phrasing and benefit from the mix and creative bells and whistles they dabble in on the production side.

The groove is the focal point to mid tempo "Endless Creation" . To these guys credit they manage to have a lot going on around the melody, with every instrument employing fill heavy embellishments to create the jam feel. Sometimes it brings to mind the solo work of Paul Simon, but this could also be said of David Matthews.

"Honeycomb" dances more of a jig around its self. They instrumentation swirls around itself while giving the vocals plenty of room to breathe. The r&b elements slide a little further into the spot light here. It becomes apparent every player is bringing a unique skill set of influences that are being mixed into this jumbo.

The ballad "Take Me Under" reminds me of something Ben Harper might do. The song seems a little too sparse in its attempt to become intimacy, as this sort thing isn't the band's strong suit. They work best when they are throwing a lot of different grooves, sounds and melodies at you and truth be told this folkish ballad is better left to those who that is their forte.

Overall this is a lot of fun and would be welcomes to any party in the French Quarter, though they have a built in audience in their hometown. There is a huge demand for this sort of thing, though only for the more open minded here at Abysmal Hymns, if you appreciate the Dave Matthews Band for their chops and ability to blend unique sounds then you will appreciate this effort as well, as they do not come across as a Dave Matthews Tribute band by any means having a compelling sound of their own.

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