The Doughboys – Hot Beat Stew (2015)

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Although countless great bands from the ’60s have reunited, only a small percentage have been able to replicate the initial spark. But the Doughboys have achieved such an accomplishment.

Since getting back together in 2000, the East Coast band has released five albums, including their latest Hot Beat Stew (RAM Records), which have all received rapturous responses. The group’s live gigs are also memorable events, directing them to be one of the very best rock and roll bands around today.

Because the Doughboys personally enjoy the kind of music they play and know their many fans love them just the way they are, they stay on course with the style that feeds their souls. Coming from the same rugged and raunchy mindset as bands like the Rolling Stones, the Pretty Things, the Shadows of Knight, and prime Aerosmith, the group churns out old school blues-stained rock, but a fresh and relevant dialogue supply their songs with a newborn touch.

Zipped tight with wild harp fills, driving drum patterns, bopping keyboards, and guitars that alternately moan, jangle, crunch, and soar with finesse, Hot Beat Stew is the quintessential garage rock album. Vocals barking, growling, and snarling with assertiveness conduct the rambunctious choir, giving the material a wholly convincing edge.

Aside from being remarkably focused and energetic musicians, the Doughboys are solid songwriters and stuff their throbbing tunes with throngs of angular hooks and bracing breaks.

“Don’t Come Crying To Me,” “Be My Baby,” “Travelin’ Salesman,” “Kamikaze,” “Long Way Down,” “You Don’t Even Know It,” and “Shake It Loose” signify the band’s forte for penning catchy songs and molding them into gutsy rockers that are short and to the point. For a spot of something different, there’s “SoHo Girl,” a paisley-trimmed pop nugget, and a groovy cover of “The Tears of a Clown” that was originally recorded by Smokey Robinson and the Miracles.

Composed of Myke Scavone, Gar Francis, Mike Caruso, and Richie Heyman, the Doughboys are the ultimate rock and roll band. They’re natural, exuberant, and have what it takes to communicate and convey both their talent and enthusiasm onto tape. In an age where not only gluten-free and low-fat food, but music of an akin caliber, is shoved down our throats, Hot Beat Stew is a nice exception. Meaty, tasty, and crammed with ear candy, the album doesn’t cut corners anywhere. Crank the volume as loud as possible and rock on!

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