BY JOHN B. MOORE
Baltimore, by way of Tennessee, rockers J. Roddy Walston & The Business stretch beyond their comfortable Southern rock take on Led Zeppelin – a sound that was lathered all over their last couple of releases – for more creative and honestly refreshing slower tempo rockers on Essential Tremors. The only problem is you have to wade through the first half of the album to get to the good stuff.
This four-piece has been at it for about a decade now and while 2010’s self-titled effort (their fifth record at the time) was a fun, grimy Southern update on The Stones, the first five songs off of Essential Tremors gives the impression that the band is simply just going to switch up the lyrics, tweak a tuning or two and rewrite the same record. But six songs in, with the soft piano intro of “Nobody Knows” followed by the optimistic “Hard Times” it’s obvious the band was just sitting on better songs.
Essential Tremors hides some of the bands’ strongest songs in years. You just have to dig for them.
DOWNLOAD: “Nobody Knows,” “Hard Times” and “Boys Can Never Tell”