Hogan’s Goat, favored farm animal species and beloved pet of retired WWE wrestler, Hulk Hogan, often seen in the passenger seat of his owner’s convertible enjoying the breeze and soaking in the Florida sun? Actually, it is in reference to a Scottish folklore about a farmer (Hogan) who owned a smelly, deformed goat with patchy fur and an eye out of socket. Hogan’s Goat is also the name of a heavy, southern rock n’ roll band based out of Nashville, TN and their self-title album is the subject of my first album review.
A little background on these Nashville rockers; the band formed in late 2014 and is made up of John Salmon (lead vocals), Donovan Bettisse (guitars), Thomas Banks (guitars), Aaron Stoner (bass), and Wayne Michel (drums). They began recording their first LP, Hogan’s Goat in March of 2016 and it was released this month. And when interviewed by East Coast Romper’s, Stephanie Stevens they described themselves as, “We are against the grain, and don’t really want to fit in. We just want to make good music, and keep the ball rollin’. We’re about a good time.”
I’ll begin with the band’s platform single “Shit Kicker”. So, going in to this I was not quite sure what to expect from a band called Hogan’s Goat and a song titled “Shit Kicker”, I must say I was pleasantly surprised. With so many sub-genres nowadays, it’s hard to know what to call a band’s sound but I’d describe it as heavy, southern rock, which seems to fit the bill. This particular song has a cool groove that compliments vocalist John Salmon’s abrasive vocals. The brief rap during the pre-chorus is funky-fun. As a vocalist, I particularly appreciate the metal-like scream after the bridge.
But don’t let the grit fool ya, John Salmon does add some admirable falsetto notes in the albums introductory song “Rat Boy”. A quite animated song with some unexpected double bass during the bridge. You can never go wrong with double bass in my opinion. The next song, “Pennymade” continues the high energy theme along with “Annie Off the Rails”. The fifth track, “Over Pallisade” has an in your face chorus with a heated undertone. “If I’m Dead” takes the energy down just a bit and adds a pretty melodic guitar riff during the bridge. You hear the thick, fierce screaming vocals during the chorus of “John Doe”, “Jack and Jill” and “Elkhorn Mountain” which seems to be a continuing theme. Hogan’s Goat finishes with “Drinkin’ With The Priest” and seems to demand attention, with the whaling guitar shredding all the way to the end.
Hogan’s Goat is high energy and makes you want to head bang while holding a cold beer in your hand (a shot of tequila wouldn’t hurt either). I must admit that the album could have used a little more diversity; maybe some melodic vocals during verses and perhaps a track that shows the softer side of Hogan’s Goat…the ladies would dig it *wink wink*.
Hogan’s Goat is available now on iTunes and you can check out the links below for upcoming shows.
Bloodrock Rating: 3.0 out of 5.0 axes
Written by Nettie B. for Bloodrock Media on July 23, 2017
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