Ultimate Interviews

Ultimate Interviews

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Howzat - Rough Cutz - Album Review

Photo Courtesy of Howzat
1. Haze
2. Storm
3. House of Love
4. Catching You
5. Stand Up (F.T.B.)

Produced by Rainer Wiechmann & Howzat
Recorded & Mixed at Mole Studios London, ON. Canada
Mastering by Siegfried Meier, Beach Road Mastering
All Songs Written by Kevin Rudy & Greigg Fraser

Purchase CD 

Kevin - Photo Courtesy of Howzat

Kevin Rudy (Vocals), Dave Buland (Drums/Vocals), Greigg Fraser (Guitar/Vocals) and Dale Penny (Drums/Vocals) are London's very ownHowzat

The five track EP was released this past April and since then it's been garnering positive reviews from fans and local radio stations alike.

The songs were written by vocalist Kevin and guitarist Greigg. Listening to the disc is essentially a tease of what Howzat is about and what they have to offer.

​By the time you get to track five, you want to hear more. I found myself hitting repeat on numerous occasions to listen to the songs again.

Each of them have extensive musical backgrounds. Picking up instruments when they were just teenagers. The dedication and hard work as paid off, which is evident with the release of their first album.

The influences vary between bandmembers, as do their musical resumes.

Greigg - Photo Courtesy of Howzat
Kevin started Howzat back in 1999, as an acoustic act with guitarist Greigg Fraser. A few years later, in 2013, they decided to plug in and kick out pure rock and roll that they love to play.

Greigg is no stranger when it comes to performing. He's had the opportunity to
 rub shoulders with some of Canada's greats such as Rush, Kim Mitchell, Rik Emmett and more.

Dale currently plays with two other original bands outside of Howzat. He's also performed in tribute bands honouring Rod Stewart, Black Sabbath and Bryan Adams.

Dave studied music in his native land France, and toured throughout Europe before moving to Toronto in 2004. He keeps busy performing with various bands and getting involved in other projects.

Dale - Photo Courtesy of Howzat
To find out more about Howzat, you can read full biographies on their website HERE

With this much star power, it's undeniable that you're going to hear something special from this band. With that, let's get to the cd shall we?

'Rough Cutz' kicks off with 'Haze'. Right from the get go, it's a great rock and roll tune. If anything, it's an inkling of what its fellow trackmates are going to sound like.

It has everything you want in an album opener. Rock solid drums, heavy bass, pure guitar, and clean, straightforward lyrics.

​Kevin, Greigg, Dale and Dave come together as one solid band, with each of their individual talents shining through a wonderfully produced track.

The second song off the EP is 'Storm'. The accompanying video begins with the band performing the song in what appears to be an auto junkyard. After the first chorus, you find them on stage with full lighting and crowd participation. Most likely what a typical Howzat show would be like.

The song is catchy and all around a great rock tune. 

Recently it reached #4 on Q108 Kingston Radio Top 25 chart of Indie Artists.

Watch video for 'Storm'.

Following 'Storm', is 'House of Love'. It's also their newest video. 

A visually fun video. The silhouettes of the band on a colourful background along with the lyrics and animations appearing throughout the song.

Watch video for 'House of Love'.
The infectious flow of the song is thanks to the interplay between Greigg's catchy guitar riff and Kevin's clean vocals. The guitar solo is solid with the bass and drums keeping everything in line.

Dave - Photo Courtesy of Howzat
The EP continues with more solid rock with the track 'Cathing You'. It would be a great song to hear them perform live. You can hear the chemistry between the bandmembers, and it's evident that they clearly are enjoying themselves and having fun. Would be the right sort of song to hear on mainstream radio.

The disc ends as great as it began. 'Stand Up (F.T.B.)' closes out their debut album. The track is a little heavier than its predecessor. It consists of guitar grunge sounds mingling with stabs of  bass and drums. Rounded off with the familiar strong vocals by Kevin.

The Howzat ride comes to an end after 'Stand Up (F.T.B)', but fortunately for YouTube you can find a treasure trove of live videos, including the band doing covers by Iggy Pop, Alice Cooper, Doucette and Kings of Leon to name a few.
For a debut album it contains everything you want as a music lover. Blistering guitars, thundering bass and drums and confident, yet not cocky, vocals. If you're a fan of AC/DC, Def Leppard, Van Halen, Poison, Skid Row,  or the dozen other bands from that genre, you're bound to enjoy Howzat, I highly recommend listening to 'Rough Cutz' and checking them out live when you can.
As a bonus, on Howzat's Official YouTube channel, I found a track that unfortunately is not on this disc. 'Smile'. Judging from the upload date, it's a few years old, but it shows a softer, acoustic side of Howzat that is easily appreciated. The guitars and vocals are gentle, a 'from the heart' song that instantly drew me in and has since become a favourite as well.​

I had a great time listening to this album and hoping to get the opportunity in the near future to see them live, which will be followed by a review. 
Kevin Rudy, Dave Buland, Greigg Fraser, Dale Penny
Photo Courtesy of Howzat
Howzat is continually touring so be sure to check them out when you can. You can keep up to date on everything Howzat on their social media sites.

Official Howzat Facebook Page
Official Howzat Website
Official Twitter 

To purchase your very own copy of 'Rough Cutz' head on over to Howzat's Official StoreAll photos courtesy of Howzat.

Also Published on Kaoticnotes.com 

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