Pittsburgh rockers, The Hawkeyes formed in 2010 from the ashes of two alt-country groups, The Jay Wiley Band and The Country Music Gas Station. They play straightforward rock n roll inspired by the classic rock/country of the 70’s like Neil Young and Crazy Horse, The Rolling Stones and Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, along with more modern bands like The Black Crowes.
This album, One Plug In The Wall, consists of nine tracks and starts off strongly with the epic “Miracle Man.” It introduces the full-throated vocals of singer Jay Wiley who possesses the authentic, rough-hewn voice necessary for proper rock ‘n roll. All the band are fine players and together they create a formidable sound. Second track “Ghost” has a great chorus whilst “Hours & Miles” is a superb rocker augmented by nice wah wah guitar from Michael Grego.
The title track is fantastic, a tale of giving up a humdrum life to join a rock ‘n roll band later on in life to chase the dream, with the catchy hook “Are you ever gonna make it man?” The tail end of the album maintains the consistently kept up through out, with “7 & A Quarter” and “Junior,” both strong and rockin’. The closing “Had Enough” is lyrically world weary yet musically uplifting and leaves the listener on a high.
Overall, this is a very enjoyable album from a band who are the real deal. With rock ‘n roll, you have to tick all the boxes or the music simply won’t ‘rock’. Fortunately The Hawkeyes are naturals, and have the swagger, emotionalism and most importantly, great songs, just like the bands they were inspired by. Long may they run.
The crew celebrate the release of “One Plug In The Wall” this Saturday the 7th at Thunderbird Cafe with Wine & Spirit from Ellwood City, PA and Hero Jr. making the trek from Indianapolis, IN. The Hawkeyes are taking care of their fans with bus service from the North and South. Those from the New Castle area visit http://bit.ly/northbus and those from the New Brighton Emsworth area visit http://bit.ly/southbus. The show starts at 9pm and costs only $10.
Review by Alex Faulkner for SSE