MP3 Loup Garou
check BRIAN OLIVE debut album on Alive

CD The Hardest Walk
LP Purple Vinyl (last copies)
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PRESS

At their best, Soledad Brothers recall the Rolling Stones when Mick and Keith were fresh-faced bluesheads in the mid-Sixties: The prolific Detroit foursome kicks out solid, harmonica-laced blues riffs without sounding derivative or cheesily nostalgic. Meet the Motor City’s newest hitmakers. – Lauren Gitlin / Rolling Stone (3 star review)
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Originally a Detroit neo-blues twosome that was inevitably compared with the White Stripes, the Soledad Brothers have expanded significantly, and not just in personnel. The band’s new album, "The Hardest Walk," features four players — only three officially Soledad sibs — and a style that employs the blues as a foundation rather than as a straitjacket. The album opens with a brace of bluesy rockers, "Truth or Consequences" and "Downtown Paranoia Blues," but these days that’s not all the Brothers can do. Thanks in large part to singer-guitarist Johnny Walker’s soulful delivery, the Soledads are just as convincing when they stroll as when they chug, and such psychedelic numbers as "Loup Garou" and the sitar-meets-pedal-steel "True to Zou Zou" show that, despite a major debt to Jagger-Richards, the brothers have also paid attention to Brian Jones’s contribution to the late-’60s Stones. (The brief "White Jazz" suggests that the band has even been listening to Albert Ayler, or at least the first MC5 album.) Such eclecticism isn’t enough to reinvent the blues-rock genre, but at its best "The Hardest Walk" does reanimate it. – Mark Jenkins / The Washington Post
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The MOJO issue with Kings Of Leon on the cover includes the free "ROOTS, FRIENDS and INFLUENCES" CD, 14 tracks that influenced, inspired and are admired by the Kings Of Leon. The CD includes music by Woody Guthrie, Merle Haggard, The Kills, My Morning Jacket, Dan Auerbach and the Soledad Brothers.

Ex-Soledad BRIAN OLIVE (a.k.a. Oliver Henry)
debut album is out on Alive Naturalsound records.

Countrified blues and uptown rock & roll slam headlong into each other on the Soledad Brothers’ latest album, The Hardest Walk. The Motor City combo set their ritualized roots grooves and lurking fevers stomps to full jangle with filtered-&-fuzzy vocals that move from lazy drawling to Bob Dylan/Lou Reed-style sneerin : It’s all quite snazzy. – Falling James / LA Weekly
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The Soledads’ new album, The Hardest Walk, comes two years after the much acclaimed Voice of Treason, a record that displayed not only Walker’s garagey love of the Blues but also his militantly-held political beliefs. Walker’s taken critical heat on both fronts, particularly from detractors who see him as a white-boy Blues rocker co-opting the form. "The only time I really care what anybody thinks is if I know the people and know and respect their tastes," says Walker. "And those people would never tell me to my face if they didn’t like my record. I don’t care what critics think. It’s nice to get a good critique, but I don’t know the people doing the writing, so I don’t know if they’re putting an Enya record on right after they put ours on." Read the interview for the Cincinnati Citybeat
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If you could have seen the brothers Soledad performing back in the late ’90s, when they were a two-piece and still a regional act, you would have thought that they hailed from "y’all country" down Southaways, that Johnny Walker was a lunatic preacher with one foot in the nuthouse and the other in the gutter. Their Estrus releases from that period proved that psychosis played by a psychiatrist (Walker has a medical degree) is scary but fun, like a Stooges funhouse horror show. After adding ex-Greenhorne multi-instrumentalist Oliver Henry to the mix, the Soledad Brothers have gotten better with each tour and record to the point that some argue that the song "Cage That Tiger" off 2003′s Voice Of Treason is the best live bruise-blues-rock song to come out of the Detroit area in the last decade. The new release, The Hardest Walk, puts all the puzzle pieces in place and still retains the glorious spontaneous spirit of a revivalist service. For the new recording and tour, the band has added yet another multi-instrumentalist member, whom Walker calls "The Frenchman Dechman," to their lineup, so be prepared for a full, four-piece band where once there were two. – Brad Kenney / Cleveland Free Time
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Detroit’s Soledad Brothers started life as one of those bluesy guitar-and-drum duos that seem to spring up like weeds in local garage-rock scenes, and though they’ve since added another guitarist and the occasional guest player, Soledad Brothers still cling to the raw, rootsy sound that stripped-down duos do best. The band’s new album, The Hardest Walk , traffics in swamp-bound sounds in an urban setting, as on "Downtown Paranoia Blues," which is all tin-shack choodle and uncontrollable jealousy, set in the dank atmosphere of a coldwater flat. Even "Sweet And Easy," the Soledads’ stab at a sultry midtempo R&B moaner, doesn’t sound too far removed from their cello-aided, dissonant creep-out "Let Me Down," and when they launch into the surging, poppy freak-beat exercise "Good Feeling," lo-fi rust keeps the song from sounding fully positive. The Hardest Walk ‘s key song may be the minute-long avant-noise fragment "White Jazz," which acknowledges the differences between Soledad Brothers and the musical primitivists they borrow from. The Soledads grapple with self-consciousness, and overcome it whenever they slip music past their own heads and into their bones. Soledad Brothers: B+. - AV Club / The Onion
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When it comes to making deliciously greasy, gutbucket garage rock, the Soledad Brothers are the Kentucky Fried Chicken of the genre. Except that the nonrelated trio is from Detroit, a city that may know less about fowl than Colonel Sanders but has a pretty fair tradition of grease and fried amplifiers. Like their Detroit predecessors (Stooges, MC5) and contemporaries (White Stripes, Greenhornes), the Soledads’ subscription to the axiom that less is more yields terrific results. On their fourth album, they ladle piano, cello, flute, and sitar into their blues-boogie stew but still somehow strip everything to bare, rump-shaking essentials. The lean guitar riff that slices like a rusty dagger through the opener, ”Truth or Consequences," will make you want to crank the volume up on the hi-fi and hip-shake with your honey, among other things. ”Downtown Paranoia Blues" and ”Crooked Crown" roll the Kings of Leon, Pretty Things, and Bo Diddley into one big primordial quake. Save for the disposable ”White Jazz," ”The Hardest Walk" is a tough-as-nails trek through rock’s grimy juke joints. Tip to listeners: let ”True to Zou Zou" play through to get to the hidden track, a basement jam that sounds like an after-hours party, the Soledads’ next cool idea, or both. – The Boston Globe
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Finally shaking free of the clutches of the garage-rock world, The Soledad Brothers find the room to grow and mutate their roots on The Hardest Walk . Although a couple tracks ("Truth or Consequences" and "Good Feeling") feature enough garage snark to tie this album to the band’s back catalog, most of The Hardest Walk finds the act looking far past the garage. "Loup Garou" mixes doses of British pop and psychedelia on top of a blues-rock rhythm section, while "Downtown Paranoia Blues" checks the roots-blues-rock format of the Stones into the trio’s jagged-edged aesthetic. "Mean Ol’ Toledo" miraculously finds a way to make "Lynryd Skynyrd-like" a positive description. "Let Me Down" and "True to Zou Zou" are as downtrodden and lonely as any tunes to waft off a sharecropper’s back porch on a Sunday afternoon in July. The blues are all over The Hardest Walk , but the Brothers don’t skin the genre and hang its hide up to tan, dry up and get stiff. The blues, whether its garage-blues, psychedelic or roots-flavored ones, are alive and well in The Soledad Brothers’ hands – regardless of how much local blues preservationists want to choke the style into the history books. – Matt Schild / Aversion
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The Hardest Walk feels more like a return to form than anything else. "Truth or Consequences" kicks off the record in style; with its rock-solid beat and frontman Johnny Walker’s Jaggeresque drawl, it’s probably their best Mick Taylor-era Stones impression since "Teenage Heartattack." "Downtown Paranoia Blues" and "Crooked Crown," on the other hand, sound like they could have fit in just fine on the Brothers’ stripped-down, blues-oriented debut – and that’s a good thing. – Zach Hoskins / Blogcritics
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