Album Reviews

The Nighthawks – Damn Good Time (Severn)

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Veteran blues-roots band the Nighthawks are at their best when they are grittiest. Their follow up to Last Train To Bluesville allows for several instances of hard hitting blues, for which Mark Wenner’s harmonica deserves a medal of honor.

That considered, the album’s standout track is the title song. “Damn Good Time,” which will undoubtedly be the song you find yourself singing long after the CD stops. Laid back and soulful, the track is a perfectly crafted original that seeps deep into your brain prompting repeated listens.

“Georgia Slop” is easily the most rocking of the album. The Jimmy McCracklin cover is certainly done justice right down to the vocal cracks and boisterous harmonica work that builds momentum right where one would expect it to get comfortable. 

“Who You’re Workin’ For” though subtle, is arguably the smoothest instrumentally. Exemplifying what the Nighthawks do best here, it’s never overbearing, but consistently suave, bluesy and with a hint of sardonic bite.

Other notable cuts include the Elvis hit “Too Much” which shuffles along the opening cut and the catchy guitar on  “Heartbreak Shake.” If one can excuse terrible puns, this album is a damn good time.

– Joe Marchia

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