The Bloodhounds: Let Loose! Review

It might be redundant to say it, but it’s true nonetheless; you only get one debut. This has two applications; you only have one chance to make a first impression on your audience, and you only have one opportunity to write, record, and release an album while being an entirely undefined act – no expectations, no comparisons, the options are literally infinite. It’s nearly impossible to overthink a debut album, and this seems to ring extremely true for the Bloodhounds. Everything is so very natural, raw, unpolished, and genuine. The Bloodhounds have been compared to early Rolling Stones, and that’s not an extremely far-fetched comparison to be made. Obsessed with delivering sparsely-decorated but fiercely energetic tracks in a rootsy manner, the L.A. four-piece shines on their debut release, Let Loose!

Perhaps the first thing to notice about the package the Bloodhounds are delivering is the complete lack of pretense. The album cover is an awkward band photo that makes perfect sense when combined with an album title like Let Loose! and song titles like “Try a Little Reefer.” This pretense-free, feel-good vibe permeates the music on Let Loose! as Aaron Piedraita and company wander from rockabilly to folk. “Dusty Bibles and Silver Spoons” sounds like it could have come off of a Beatles record as a Ringo-led country oddity. “Crackin’ Up” is a strange mix of ska and early sixties pop, favoring familiar melodic turns and a danceable bass and drum backbone. The album’s peak might the barstool sing-a-long “Older Budweiser,” and the combination of acoustic guitar, banjo, and kazoo almost leaves the taste of dust in your mouth.

If the album has any flaws, it’s that it’s perhaps not progressive enough. The Bloodhounds spent an inordinate amount of time looking backward and next to none looking forward. Not that it doesn’t work for this album – song titles like “Bottle Cap Blues” and “Try a Little Reefer” should be enough to alert you that this album is a celebration of those things that make the Bloodhounds feel good, nostalgic music not exempt. And while it makes us feel good too, after forty minutes it starts to feel a little lackluster. The Bloodhounds have fit themselves into an extremely fun niche, and it would be endlessly interesting to see what they would do if they allowed themselves a little more room to move.

The Review: 7.5/10

Can’t Miss Tracks

– Crackin’ Up
– The Wolf
– Try a Little Reefer
– Older Budweiser

The Big Hit

– The Wolf

Review by Richard MacDougall

Buy the album: Amazon

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Bulk Email Sender