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Hey Harley Streaming Tracks Off Their Upcoming Debut Album

Restless Americana

Restless Americana

In the 1970s Bob Harris was the presenter of the “FM Radio” and everything else of rock music on BBC Television, “The Old Grey Whistle Test” -an exponent of prog rock, country, hard rock and what we call Americana today, the man was an institution… a sort of John Peel for people not overwhelmed by cool.

Apparently he still is, his taste in music so appreciated a nod of approval could make a band in the UK. Which explains why the Americana duo Hey Harley are going to start their push on their eponymous debut album by touring the UK and the US,  Harris is a fan of one half of Hey Harley, Lizanne Knott -a terrific singer and songwriter who is all purr and persuasion and whose 2013 Standing in the English Rain, was the latest in a career that stretches back to the turn of the century. To use the parlance: she’s big in the UK.

Her partner in Hey Harley is one of the best songwriters around, Bill is  “a native Los Angeles songwriter / singer / producer / arranger / guitarist” who has been on the soundtrack of every TV show from Dawson’s Creek to King Of The Hill. But keep your eye on the songwriter. I wrote earlier this year about Hey Harley’s “Mexicali Stars” and you can hear it yourself on the pre-release six song sampler currently streaming here.

Americana by way of its many restless meshing of genre’s, Hey Harley is a seamless meeting of minds,two entwined sensibilities playing off each other as they effortlessly move from country to jazz, to soft shoe shuffle, with a deft intensity. “I Think Love” suggests a rockabilly buzz with a tasty lick like a young  Scotty Moore and, I hope Hey Harley keep this song placement on the album proper because the ear wants to hear it when they follow”I Think Love”  with Lizanne’s “Wonderful Day”: it is an opening that has you looking over your shoulders wondering how you got there, Lizanne takes the lead, Bill adds shading and what the heck is that horn doing there? Soon you are at the big time ballad “Tennessee”. Lizanne has one of the loveliest voices I’ve heard in awhile and “Stolen Car” is worthy of Emmylou Harris.

Six songs, very assured, very smart, well worth your time and attention, don’t let the UK steal their hearts. WE WANT A TOUR!

Grade: A-

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