Album Review: The Gentle Hits – Self Titled

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The Gentle Hits

The Gentle Hits - Porch Party Records

Arizona’s The Gentle Hits are comprised of lead songwriter and vocalist Ian Metzger, drummer Mark Kulvinskas, bassist Wayne Jones and multi instrumentalist James Mulhern. The Gentle Hits were formed from the ashes of the former critically acclaimed projects, Dear And The Headlights and What Laura Says, after taking a brief hiatus from their previous bands, the core of the band found that they couldn’t help but return to their first love, making music, and this self titled album is the result of their decision to return to recording.

The Gentle Hits is an album that is a cocktail of Rebel Country, Nick Cave, Bourbon and regret, it is thirteen tracks of twangy soulful county influenced music that represents a distinct musical shift away from Ian Metzger‘s indie roots with Dear And The Headlights. The album veers between upbeat and defiant numbers, recorded with the band in full flow, and introspective and dark acoustic numbers. This is a very personal album written in the aftermath of personal and professional loss, on the downbeat numbers you can almost feel the pain involved in the cathartic writing process that has resulted in The Gentle Hits debut album

In addition to writing, arranging, and performing its music, The Gentle Hits also produced and engineered their self titled album, this is both an unapologetic expansion on their previous creative outlets and a step out into a new direction. Elements of this album appeal to me greatly, in particular the track All That Information that has taken up residence on my playlist, but I found the downbeat sections to be a little too dominant for my tastes, but having said that this is a strong album that represents a brave new musical venture, but is also one that fans of the band members previous outfits will enjoy, as it will allow them to rekindle their association with Ian Metzger and co.

The Gentle Hits will be released on November 18 via Porch Party Records and it can be pre-ordered here