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Hookers & Blow – Hookers & Blow

Hookers & Blow
Hookers & Blow
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 28 September 2021, 11:02 AM

HOOKERS & BLOW originally formed in 2003 as an excuse to drink for free in Hollywood by longtime GUNS N’ ROSES keyboardist and QUIET RIOT guitarist Alex Grossi had no idea that nearly 20 years later the band would see themselves slowly morph into what many in the industry simply refer to as “legendary”. HOOKERS & BLOW’s current line-up includes Johnny Kelly, Mike Duda, and Nadja. This cover band have recently released their latest self-titled album here, which contains twelve tracks.

“Rocks Off” leads off the album. I like the piano usage in this song. This ROLLING STONES cover is honest and catchy, but not too far from the original. The harmonies in the chorus are also a nice touch. “Shakin’” is of course the EDDIE MONEY classic…which might be one of my least favorite songs from the legend…RIP. The mid-tempo pacing bogs down the song too much for my tastes. In my opinion, he has much more memorable music. “Trapped Under Foot” is a LED ZEPPELIN cover. Of all their weird music, this song is very strange. Once again, the boys in HOOKERS & BLOW manage a nice cover, with a blend of their own personality.

“The Winner Loses” is a BODY COUNT cover. From the acoustic opening, to the poignant lyrics, and big chorus, this depressing song makes a mark on the listener. The band’s approach to the cover however is fairly lackluster. “American Girl” is a TOM PETTY cover. This sweet cover goes the original justice. It’s hard not to play this song and be in a good mood, and the band does a very good job with this classic song. “(You Gotta” Fight for your Right (to Party)” is a BEASTIE BOYS cover. The original was iconic for its message, but was no feat in terms of musicianship. The cover isn’t any better in my opinion, especially with the vocal approach. “Saturday Night’s all Right for Fighting” is an ELTON JOHN classic. It’s actually one of the better cover songs on the album.

I have this lingering question when it comes to this kind of music…why? Taking on so many classic songs and with the variety they present was a difficult task. I understand that part of the band’s image has to be rooted in some campiness. Unfortunately, these things go hand in hand. Legendary? That is a stretch to say. They do a better job with some songs than with others, but as a collective, this falls short for me, and I’m not sure what Golden Robot Records is doing with this band on its roster.

Songwriting: 2
Musicianship: 5
Memorability: 1
Production: 8

2 Star Rating

1. Rocks Off
2. Shakin’
3. Trampled under Foot
4. Ziggy Stardust
5. The Winner Loses
6. Time of the Season
7. American Girl
8. Godzilla
9. (You Gotta) Fight for your Right (to Party)
10. Under my Thumb Let’s Spend the Night Together
11. No Quarter
12. Saturday Night’s all Right for Fighting
Alex Grossi
Johnny Kelly
Mike Duda
Record Label: Golden Robot Records


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