Thursday, March 24, 2011
‘Rebel’ Rod’s Reviews – Hickoids – “Kicking It With The Twits” (Saustex Media) – a heavy dose of Cowpunk with a British Invasion twist -
By ‘Rebel’ Rod Ames
If you were listening to my radio show a couple weeks back, you heard me play The Stones, “Let It Bleed” in its entirety. Now the station I broadcast on is mostly roots country with a heavy dose of red pepper thrown in for a little bite. So to play an album recorded in 1968 by a British super group was kind of going out on a limb. I was not sure if it was going to be positively received by my listeners or by the high sheriffs at KOOK 93.5 in Junction, Texas.
My justification for playing the record was reciprocal; The Stones were heavily influenced by American music. In fact, they drew their name from a Muddy Waters tune. The Stones became one of the most influential rock ‘n roll bands in the history of rock ‘n roll. Therefore, to me, they seemed more than deserving of a tribute from me on my show by playing one of their most significant records, “Let It Bleed”.
This all brings me to Hickoids latest release, “Kicking It With the Twits”. This is one hell of a record with Jeff Smith (vocals) and crew, Davy Jones on guitars, Rice Moorehead on bass, Jonie Hell on drums, Scott Lutz on pedal steel and baritone guitars, Jacob Schultze on keyboards and guitars, and Jeff Daniels on the harmonica and saxophone.
The band realized that over the years they had closed many a show with their unique style of cowpunk mixed in with many a British invasion tune, but had never recorded any of them. They felt it was about time, resulting in “Kicking It With the Twits”.
The record is comprised of eight great tunes, starting with The Who’s “Pictures of Lily”. It is followed by The Stones’ “Have You Seen Your Mother Baby, Standing in the Shadow?”, The Moves’ “Brontosaurus”, Slade’s “Gudbuy T’ Jane”, Elton John’s “Bennie and the Jets”, Mott the Hoople’s “Whizz Kid”, Brian Eno’s “Needles in the Camel’s Eye”, and "Neat, Neat, Neat" by The Damned.
I literally loved all eight of their renditions, but if you backed me into a corner, gun pointed at my temple, ordering me to pick my favorite tunes on the record, I’d probably choose “Neat, Neat, Neat” and Sir Elton’s “Bennie and the Jets”. The funny thing about the second selection is that “Bennie and the Jets” was probably my very least favorite of all of his songs. Maybe he should have recorded it as the Hickoids did it.
You get the picture though. “Kicking It With the Twits” is about as much fun as one can have listening to a record. In fact, you can count on hearing it on the next segment of “After Midnight” on my radio show.
The record was released on CD, Vinyl, and digital on 3/15/2011. I highly recommend you add it to your collection.