The return of Molly Hatchet
With its continuing series of Frazzeta-esque covers and lack of any quality songs to follow its 1978 debut, Molly Hatchet has quickly slid from popular mainstream act to cult band. All of which makes the band's latest venture, "The Deed is Done," a surprisingly pleasant listen.
With ZZ Top and .38 Special taking the Top 40 route, and the Allman Brothers virtually retired from the music scene, Molly Hatchet's latest is the best Southern rock since the demise of Lynyrd Skynyrd.
"Satisfied Man," the LP's first single, is a strong rocker. Danny Joe Brown's vocals are throaty and bursting with energy, while Dave Hlubek and Duane Rolland provide plenty of ammo on lead guitars.
The most innovative number is "Intro Piece," an instrumental in the progressive vein of Yes or Alan Parsons that allows the guitarists and keyboardist to show off their chops. The explorative side continues with "Song for the Children," another instrumental, this time on acoustic instrumentation.
After that, the slow, melodic "Heartbreak Radio" provides a change in pace and puts singer Brown back in charge. "I Ain't Got You" is a return to the traditional rock 'n' sound of the band's early days, with Hlubek, Rolland and Brown all sounding perfectly at home.
Molly Hatchet is maturing as a band, with the group's members gaining enough confidence to reach beyond what they have already accomplished.
© Copyright Jim Trageser
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