The Doughboys, “The Tears of a Clown” (2014): One Track Mind

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Covering Motown classics can be awfully risky, considering such songs never need repair. But you can always trust the Doughboys to do things right — and that they do with their utterly awesome revision of this 1970 hit single from Smokey Robinson and the Miracles.

In the hands of the Doughboys, the shimmering soul pop gem is transformed into a bluesy rocking rumble. The chins are jutting out and the boys are stomping and clomping as they rip through “The Tears of a Clown” (RAM Records) as though they’re headlining Madison Square Garden. Yowling harmonica fills dance around chunky power chords and fat-bottomed drums, while the growling vocals give off enough heat to melt all the icebergs in Alaska.

The Doughboys, who hail from the East Coast, will be releasing “The Tears of a Clown” as one of the tracks on their eagerly-awaited forthcoming album, due in the fall — which is, indeed, great news. Until that disc appears, savor every note of “The Tears of a Clown” and don’t forget to play the band’s earlier singles and albums as well, because a Doughboys record a day keeps the doctor away!

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