Review: The Hexmen – The Hexmen

Posted on: Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009

hexmen

“THE HEXMEN”

(self-titled, self release)

Now here’s a treat for anyone who enjoyed those glorious post-punk days of the very late 70s’ and early 80s’, when the likes of Nine Below Zero, Dr. Feelgood, Eddie & The Hot Rods, Lew Lewis, etc., delivered their energetic punk-tinged r&b – around this time The Hexmen were born in Liverpool – fronted by George Wickstead on harmonica and vocals – aka George Hexman – and they boasted a shifting line-up of members of such bands as Afraid Of Mice, Psychedelic Furs, The Boo Radleys and more – with even the great Charlie Whitney of Family being a sometime-Hexman!

The current line-up, took shape after a Liverpool jam night in 2008 and are – George Hexman (harmonica and vocals), David Woods (guitar), Joan Bimson (bass) and Raymond Wong (drums) – and they have recorded a most enjoyable blast through some r&b/blues classics, with no less than the first four tracks ones that featured on the classic Nine Below Zero “Live At The Marquee” release.

The opening blast through “Ridin’ On The L&N” shows what they are all about – George Hexman’s tough harp and vocals, the spunky guitar of David Woods and the driving rhythm section of Joan Bimson and Raymond Wong. They then, in order, hit us with “Woolly Bully”, “Sugar Pie” and the great Otis Rush tune, “Homework” – and you can’t argue with an opening salvo like that.

Elsewhere highlights are the Peter Green song “Looking For Somebody”, Van Morrison’s “Gloria”, and a few liberties taken with Elmore James “The Sky Is Crying” – ‘borrowed’ for the tongue-in-cheek “Look At The Tears Roll Down Sefton Street”, with some biting guitar from David Woods and tough vocal. Roy Head’s oft-recorded “Treat Her Right” – another tune associated with Nine Below Zero – is given another high-energy performance.

I would suggest this band make for a great live experience, with plenty of gigs on the books, check out their websites!

GRAHAME RHODES

www.thehexmen.co.uk

www.myspace.com/thehexmen

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