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Nighthawks churn out classic heavy blues

Open All Nite
Open All Nite
By The Nighthawks

Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab: 1989 (reissued by MFSL 1992)

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This review first appeared in the Spring 1993 edition of Blues Revue Quarterly magazine (now Blues Revue).

Long hailed by critics as one of the best bar bands ever, The Nighthawks play a muscular, electric blues a la the white British blues bands of the 1960s and '70s.

For instance, "Shake Your Moneymaker" owes as much to Peter Green of the original Fleetwood Mac as it does to Elmore James' original version. While you hear traces of everyone from Robert Johnson to B.B. King in their playing, you'll also hear influences from John Mayall, Savoy Brown, the Yardbirds and even early UFO – British "heavy blues."

All of which is certainly no knock on The Nighthawks, who remain active nearly 30 years after their founding in Washington, D.C. Their upbeat boogie rhythms combine with a driving guitar for a music with an almost manic passion.

(While the MFSL reissue is now out of print, if you can find it the sound quality was – as with all MFSL projects – stellar.)