By: Sean Carsley October 1st, 2013
The debut album from The Heavyset Quartet, Keep Pushin, is mature, consistent and well worth the listen.
What is quickly apparent is the rich horn section which consists of the alto sax/trombone work of Lauren Barnett and Tom Richards, respectively. Guest tenor sax Paul Metcalfe rounds out the trio. The solid sound of THQ are complemented with bassist Gram Whitty and drummer Simon Dennis.
Barnett is a treasure because of her voice. She can be subtle to brash in a heartbeat. But the key ingredient to Keep Pushin‘s magic may very well be Demetri Petsalakis. He’s not only the guitarist, but the producer for Keep Pushin’. They are a funk band which switches gears to reggae or rock as required. In the wrong hands, this album could have been a mess, but THQ and guest players bring together all right ingredients, blasting through the speakers.
The first four songs are a nice build up to the meat of the album. “Rude Boy” is a restrained, hypnotic story. “Just To Get By” is a hot, bluesy number dripping with horns. Who doesn’t love horns? Then Barnett et al absolutely kill it on the scorching “Sell Your Soul”.
Sometimes the weaker songs get pushed to the end because that’s the graveyard of album mediocrity. But it’s a nice surprise to find “Chained”, “Drive Me Mad” and “I Don’t Know And I Don’t Care” carrying true listening worthiness.
It’s not hard to pinpoint why Keep Pushin’ is such a solid work. The Heavyset Quartet are invested in each song from start to finish with no ‘throwaway’ numbers to be found. They put their foot on your throat and never step off.
The Heavyset Quartet – Rude Boy