Big Blue Tree

Hoochie Coochie Men

Independent release, 2014

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


Believe it or not, there was and still might be another band with this name. The Hoochie Coochie Men band that we're talking about here are from a small town in Pennsylvania and play blues-rock and folk music in the sort of way that brings to mind Buddy Guy and The Allman Brothers. After forming in college in 2012 and playing local parties and bars, the quintet relocated to New York and didn't have much of a problem striking a chord with new fans. Though they're still a young band by most accounts, the six tracks on the EP my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Big Blue Tree certainly don't sound like it.

The title track “Big Blue Tree” opens the album with a soulful, blues feeling where horns and guitar solos meet to produce an inviting sound that lets the listener know it's necessary to pull up a chair and stay awhile. “Here I Remain” follows and takes a similar course, albeit a little more subdued, but not lacking any of the necessary impact. By track three, “I'd Rather Go Blind/Don't Let Me Down,” things switch gears into a more piano driven mood with singing that is nearly pleading. Speaking of which, there are two vocalists on duty here; both take a different approach and do it well. Zach Gold offers the more blues-influenced pipes, while Joey Tumulty's method is pure soul. Thankfully, the band knows when to employ each voice with maximal effect.

At the halfway point “Living Alone” keeps the contemplative theme going, and as the lyrical content mulls things over, the music mixes light percussion, keys and warm guitars before the pace picks up with the louder “Things I Know.” Reminiscent of a Patrick Sweany tune, it's a great blues rock track that stands well against the best of the genre and is the best tune here.

My mark of a decent EP is one that makes you want to hear more. Big Blue Tree easily lives up to that mark, and seeing as how they're just getting started, there's plenty more from Hoochie Coochie Men to come soon.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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