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Boys and Girls – Alabama Shakes album review

Experiencing something unbiased is a privilege. Take movies as an example, rarely does anyone get the opportunity to experience a movie free from outside influences, such as a preview or review. Given the chance, one might discover their opinion does not coincide with others’. If you have never heard of the Alabama Shakes, or their new album ‘Boys and Girls’, stop reading.Listen to ‘Boys and Girls’, it is free on plenty of streaming music programs. Grab your headphones, an old photo album and pour yourself three fingers of bourbon. Come back when you are done.

Some bands produce singles, some albums and a select few do both. Listen to ‘Boys and Girls’ all the way through. For their debut record, the Alabama Shakes produced an entire album, an occurrence becoming rare as time goes by. ‘Boys and Girls’ will not revolutionize the music industry; it is blues rock after a long night of drinking with nothing but old school soul playing on a ‘950’ Wurlitzer. Yet something special happens if you let ‘Boys and Girls’ into your life for about twenty minutes; your world starts to intertwine with their music. It is as if Spock is performing a mind meld with you, enlightening you to truths that eluded you until now. The ‘Shakes’ are a bunch of high school cast offs and a former nuclear plant worker. You will not find a more honest album, made for the sake of making music, anytime soon.

For some reason listening to this album reminded me of a line by the British singer, Billy Bragg, “I don’t want to change the world … I’m just looking for another girl.” Throw out your stupid cellphone, dump a beer on that DVR and imagine a place where all you have is what you can bring with you. Some people come, pockets empty, unsure of what to do with their hands, or their thoughts. Others come with ‘Boys and Girls’ echoing through their soul. You want to be the latter.

By Geoffrey Mitchell

Former lighting designer, military helicopter mechanic and dolphin tamer. I cover local bands in the NJ/NY area in my free time. It's a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll.

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