In a world where the majority of us are glued to our screens, this album is appropriately titled. The album in question is Smartphone Rabbit Hole and it comes from Bluesy Rock Duo HENRY’S FUNERAL SHOE. This is the third studio album from the duo and it was released today.
The story of HENRY’S FUNERAL SHOE began in the year 2008 and was formed by two brothers. They are heavily influenced by the delightful sounds from their father’s vinyl collection. Bands in this collection include THE WHO, THE BEATLES and CREEDANCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL.
Once you press play, you can hear the influences instantly. The two opening tracks are very different from each other, these both help to get the album off to a great start. For those who are new to HENRY’S FUNERAL SHOE, it gives a great idea on what their sound is like.
It gets off to a chilled start with the song Everybody Says Hi. Given what the album’s content is about, I think this vibe works for the song in question. This is the song you could play on those lazy days where you don’t have to do anything and it eases you in.
I like the transition from that song to High Shoulders Everywhere. Given what the album is about, the title alone is appropriate. I think of the hunched shoulders as we walk along the high street, pathway or wherever we happen to be walking whilst looking down at our screens. That’s my interpretation of the song anyway. I like how upbeat this track is, it perks you up and makes sure you’re paying attention.
As the album continues, the influences from their father’s vinyl collection become clearer. There is an eclectic array of tracks the boogie woogie rhythm in Quick As A Hiccup to softer sounds of Ball And Chain.
The melody in Right Time reminds me of THE ROLLING STONES classic Honky Tonk Women, particularly with the trumpets and saxophone providing great accompaniments to the bluesy rock. I enjoyed the simplicity of the melody and the nostalgia it gives off.
I personally really like the lyrics in the title track. “Can you tell which lies are wrong” will be chanted throughout music venues across the country when being performed live. From listening to the lyrics, to me it sounded like it was about the obsession with social media platforms and sharing our personal lives online. A lot of the time however, it’s not often the whole truth. The anarchic rock sounds match the lyrical content perfectly.
Closing track Ball And Chain reminds me of the iconic GREEN DAY track Good Riddance (Time Of My Life) melody wise. Within the lyrics, they also carry poignant messages about life in general. Particularly the heavier sides of life that can get us down.
To sum it all up, the album contains an important theme. The music itself is very retro sounding and ones that will bring back memories of the hazy, rock sounds that influenced many artists today.
Words: Lotty Whittingham
Smartphone Rabbit Hole is out now.