Alabama Shakes has been together since 2009 and their music has already been in a commercial for Zales Jewelry. But, the band just released their first full-length album entitled Boys and Girls yesterday. In other words, the road that this band has traveled is unique.
This album is certainly unique as well. Alabama Shakes has a soulful, earthy, country twang which-accompanied by lead singer Brittany Howard’s jazzy vocal styling-immediately calls attention to the record. Her voice almost sounds like it belongs in the 1970s yet holds a timeless nature to it. There is a force behind her voice that progresses everything forward. The title track of the record certainly holds this to be true.
Songs like “Rise to the Sun” and “I Ain’t the Same” have a more energized feel to them that gives the entire album a lift. Without these songs, it’s safe to say that the album could caress some listeners to sleep.
The song “On Your Way” captures every important aspect of the album. It starts out slow with a country spike to it but as the vocals set in, other instruments also find their way into the song and it begins to sound like a country rock crossover.
As a whole, the songs on Boys and Girls sound somewhat the same. While there is a distinction from song to song, there is a lack of range in them. However, this could have been done on purpose so that each song sounds as if it was meant to be on this album.
Boys and Girls is certainly an album to end a long day with. It has a peaceful and calm nature that is captured in not only the feeling of the songs but the vocals as well. It’s perfect for a date night in or just as background music in a small gathering of friends. While the record is only over a half an hour long, it has a quiet power that sustains and can change the mood of a room with the textures of its songs.