• Bryon Harris

Greg Hoy & The Boys - Double LP

Greg Hoy & The Boys have been busy the last 15 years with over 30 full length releases. This year, the group reached another milestone in their illustrious career. They released a self-titled double gatefold. Recorded at Tiny Telephone SF, the trio of Greg Hoy & The Boys took only a year to complete 22 songs. The ambitious, retro-rock double LP offers everything you would expect from a seasoned song-writer and much more.

“Brilliant Jerk” is a great song. Commencing with clean percussion, bursts of grungy rhythm guitar set the stage. Greg sings, “Hey Man, you’re the life of the party, think you’re so big with all your words…” The verse moves into the catchy chorus with a nice thickening of the vocal mix. The song is about a pseudo-intellect, a pompous and pretentious party guy, who thinks he’s all that and a bag of chips. The song ends with a guitar solo that cuts through the mix and passes it on to some funky bass then sounds off with percussion you could clap your hands to. “Brilliant Jerk” is the song you always wanted to have at a party to play at just the right moment when that certain someone starts talking and now it's finally been written. This is a classic.

Another song that shines is track 3, “Tied Up For Last.” The intro is what happens when rock and funk meet- the band pulls of a nice thump bass rock groove. The verses transition to the chorus with articulated guitar work that sounds wonderfully acrobatic and fun to listen to. As the song progresses, it grows thicker with great vocal harmonies.

Starting with a drum roll, track four is titled “Keep Feeling Caffeination” and it’s exactly how the title sounds – full of intense energy from beginning to end. Here the band really shows off their chops with very tight playing. Mid-way, intertwining solos converse brilliantly. With a slight bluesy swing, Greg & the Boys know how to keep a rock groove going at any tempo. It never sounds rushed or manic – just caffeinated, like a strong yet smooth cup of coffee. The true challenge with “Keep Feeling Caffeination” will be for listeners to stay seated; it might be impossible as this song gets you pumped.

Track six, “Baby the World’s on Fire” has very strong melodic content with elements of classic rock heard in the rocking drums, psychedelic keys and guitar solos that cut like a knife through rock n’ roll butter. Greg shines on the lead vocals, sounding radio-ready. The chorus is immensely catchy, “Baby the Worlds of Fire and you're talking 'bout your hair Shiny and twisted spread out everywhere. Baby the worlds on fire and I do believe it's true.” The song is about someone who is oblivious to the world’s issues because she is wrapped up in trivial matters and/or distracted by materialism and the media.

Skipping to track 13, “Participation Award” draws you in with an idea – maybe you are going to get recognition for everything you are, by just being you, and just maybe, that’s enough. To be recognized for who you are is a great sentiment. Greg displays his vocal range, singing in multiple ranges and with an easy falsetto. The guitar takes the melody and molds into nice phrases that leap off the track. Hollow percussive sounds add an interesting texture.

Greg Hoy & The Boys have gone the extra mile and the outcome is a double album that creates the desire\s more than a double listen - Every song can stand on its own with double originality and double substance making this double album a win-win.

For more information, please visit their website.

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