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Album Review

J. Roddy Walston & The Business Self-Titled Album

December 8, 2019

Before you start listening to this album, you better buckle up and strap in because the energy hits you right out of the gate.  J. Roddy Walston & The Business released their self-titled album after their debut album Hail Mega Boys.  The first few songs off of the high-energy album, such as Don’t Break the Needle and Used to Did, hit hard with heavy rock and slight instances of jazz/blues infused piano playing.  Hailing from Baltimore, Maryland, J. Roddy Walston & The Business unapologetically use raw, sometime scratchy vocals and fast riffs to get the crowd off their feet and dance to the music.  Their live shows are nothing like I have ever experienced. J. Roddy Walston, husband of a traditionally trained opera singer, nearly loses his voices every show by how raw and energetically he sings as he sits at his upright piano centerstage.  “The Business” behind him, which includes some of the biggest Baltimore Orioles fans in the country, provide their fair share of high-energy moments. Don’t let all the talk of head banging and high energy confuse you, however. J. Roddy Walston & The Business sure knows how to slow things down, especially on their sophomore album.  Songs such as Caroline and Pigs & Pearls show the blues/southern rock side of the band. Overall, the self-titled album is a complete demonstration of the pure talent and multi-faceted band which is J. Roddy Walston & The Business. No stone, heavy rock, slow blues, or love song, is left unturned on this album.

J. Roddy Walston & The Business released two more recent albums since their self-titled one: Essential Tremors (named after the neurological disorder of the front man) and Destroyers of the Soft Life.  Unfortunately, just a couple short weeks ago, J. Roddy Walston & The Business announced that a show in Richmond, Virginia would be their last before an indefinite hiatus. So, we thank you J. Roddy Walston and The Business for helping us stay young, or as the sixth song off the album says:

Don't get old, mama, young life is boldDon't get rememberedWhen you're remembered you're throughDon't get old, mama, don't get old

Written by: Paul Burke

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