Brittany Howard

REVIEW: Boys & Girls - Alabama Shakes

 " this album actually makes you feel. It gets under your skin, and that's what music is all about, y’all."

How does a nascent band with an unreleased album end up on a SXSW bill with the likes of Andrew Bird and Sharon Van Etten, just after taping a session of Austin City Limits?  Or become both NPR and Paste Magazine’s Best New Artist of the Year, and find a place on Billboard’s Best Bets for 2012 list, and again, do it all before the album is even out?  Alabama Shakes does it by being just that good, son, and don’t you forget it.

It’s a rare and beautiful thing when a band can evoke a lot of other sounds, yet be derivative of nothing. There’ve already been gallons of ink spilled for reviews of the album despite its only weighing in at 11 songs and a scant 37 minutes (not counting the bonus Heavy Chevy, which adds another 2:41), but one listen and you’ll totally get why this band has been invited to every music festival on Planet Earth this summer.