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heavy on the heart. - Smokin' All The Weed (Riffsville Records)

22 April 2024

Genres change, evolve and adapt constantly. It’s called moving with the times, staying relevant, and appealing to a fresh audience. Even a genre as tried and tested as rock and roll, a sound that, some would argue, found its perfect form decades ago, goes through such growing pains. And if the nature of the sonic beast does change from one generation to the next, with rock music at least, there is one common denominator, one constant, one thing that links everything from early rock and roll to seventies classic rock to nineties alternative to the movers and shakers of the current rock scene is attitude. And attitude is what heavy on the heart has by the ton.

“Smokin’ All The Weed” is your classic foot-on-the-monitor, fist-in-the-air, heads-down-no-nonsense, good-time rock and roll anthem, the soundtrack to another Friday night of live music, spilt drinks and good times. But there is still something that sets them apart from the pack, and that is this: They may regard themselves as an alt-rock or pop-punk or emo or rock and roll band, and indeed, for the most part, they are, but what I hear, in this tune at least is a heavy rock version of The Pogues. Okay, hear me out!

Not only does Nicky Brady seem to roll her R’s and keen like a gal from the Emerald Isle, but the vocal phrasing here feels akin to a traditional folk favourite, only one turned up to eleven. But, stick a mandolin where the guitar is, and throw in a few counter vocals, a bit of Oi Oi Oi or a few Too-ra-loo-ra-li’s behind and across the lead, and you’d have a kick-arse Celtic folk-rock song.

But I digress. heavy on the heart is indeed a great rock band, but if they ever pushed in a certain direction, they would make a fantastic punk-folk outfit.