Monday, May 4, 2015

Album Review: Retro Soul from Major And The Monbacks

I've always had a soft spot for bands with horns and that trend has continued with the eight-piece band Major and the Monbacks. After performing together for seven years, they have finally come around to recording their debut, self titled album (release date May 12th). And it's a good one.  There's horns a plenty, a sophisticated sound, high energy dance tunes, and tight vocal harmonies. While in high school in Norfolk, VA, twin brothers Neal (guitar, vocals, keys) and Cole (bass) Friedman formed the precursor of what would eventually become Major and the Monbacks with classmates Michael Adkins (guitar, vocals, harmonica, keys), Harry Schloeder (guitar, vocals, keys), and Tyler Wes (percussion, hype). Nate Sacks (saxophone), Bryan Adkins (drums), and Aaron Reeves (trumpet) round out the eight pieces. Pair this excellent album with Norfolk's Smartmouth Brewing Co. Cheers.

  • I Can Hardly Wait - slow start to the album, then.....
  • Somedays - an instant classic; best track
  • Annabelle - starts slow but gradually gains a full head of steam
  • Don't Say A Word - hear a little JJ Grey in this one
  • She Don't Knock - sophisticated soul
  • Sunshine - vocal harmonies abound in this pop song
  • Be My Baby - starts with 1950s do whop pop; leans towards Holy Ghost Tent Revival
  • Magnolia - notice the keys and guitars
  • Fool - there's some St. Paul and The Broken Bones
  • I Do - fast pace finale

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