Sometimes music comes into your life at just the right time. I got an advance copy of the Teskey Brothers’ new album “Half Mile Harvest” right before Christmas, on one of those cold days where dragging your butt to the office seems like the worst idea in the world, when half your coworkers are already off for the holidays. I shut my door, pressed play, and sweet soul music instantly filled the room. I could close my eyes, and imagine myself in a dark club, a haze of smoke hanging low in the air and the smell of whisky on everyone’s breath. Is that how people felt when they played new Motown in the 60’s? I’d like to think it was.
But this album doesn’t come from 1965 Detroit via a time machine: the Teskey Brothers hail from Australia and are very much of their time.
I quickly realized how amazing this record sounds when my phone rang and I pressed pause. It felt like the room collapsed as the music went silent, pushed away by the hard void of that cold December morning. The album was recorded entirely analog, and it shows. It has a warmth to it that we don’t hear often enough these days, a presence that lets the music talk directly to your soul.
Josh Teskey’s vocal tone is rich and soothing, and the band plays with the minimalistic approach of playing just the right notes for the songs. Blues flavours tastefully permeate the record, culminating in the almost twelve minute long closing track “Honeymoon” where the band lets loose and jams, alternating between blues boogie and Pink Floyd-ian ambiance. Yeah, that sounds weird written down, but I guarantee it sounds amazing in your ears.
If you like Motown, soul or blues, you have to check out this album. What am I saying: if you like music, you have to check out this album.
“Half Mile Harvest” is available now.