Friday “I Can’t Wait to Get out of this Hot Office” Rock and Roll: Alabama Shakes

Nothin’ like some scorchin’ hot retro rock-n-roll on a scorchin’ hot day! That’s what they say anyways. I could listen to this song without this temperature, but I won’t complain. I’ve got the Alabama Shakes to listen to. And so do you.

See, this is what really pisses me off with people these days. Go look on Youtube comment boards of Justin Bieber videos or talk to a teenager wearing a Zeppelin and I can guarantee you’ll hear one thing: “Wahhhh, there’s no good music now-a-days! Why can’t music be made like it used to be!? I hate all of this Bieber shit! I want to hear some rock-n-roll!” Open your ears kids, real music is all around you! Just listen! I’m getting too excited. I think I have heatstroke.

I’m not going to get up and say that Brittany Howard sings like a perfect hybrid reincarnation (or half reincarnated?) embodiment of Janis and Aretha, or that these guys are single-handedly bringing back real guitar soul/rock into it’s mainstream roots, or the fact that song makes me literally want to jump out of my chair and go crazy, because all of those things have already been said. But all of those things I just stated are true. Especially that last one.

There’s something strange I’ve noticed while watching some of the Alabama Shakes live performances across the interweb. The song starts, maybe with some slow and steady hi-hat snare beat or a fuzzy palm-muted power chord. Then after a few measures, Howard’s signature “full-of-soul” voice comes starts working and weaving its way into the music and the band starts to pick up a little energy. The drummer quickens the tempo a little bit and the guitarist lets off the palm mute a little bit. Not long after this, all hell breaks loose and the song whips up into this fury of bluesy guitar riffs and running basslines. It’s as if the musicians on stage forget what they’re supposed to be doing until Howard starts her crescendo, and then it all clicks for them. “Oh, yeah,” they think. “We’re supposed to be fucking rocking out.” And rock out they do.

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