Harvey Swagger Band
Harvey Swagger Band inhabits a gritty world of challenges, temptations and words better left unsaid. It roams from mainstreet to country back alley exploring a range of both familiar and exotic places, often drawing inspiration from life's less celebrated experiences. With the vivacious Josie Rothwell now a consistent starter in the line up, Harvey Swagger Band's rougher edges have been smoothed. In recent times Harvey and the Langman brothers have discovered new collaborative freedoms and this has allowed their songs to breathe more easily, often moving in and out of traditional structures. Rothwell's vocals have been a revelation, adding golden touches to otherwise complete tracks and providing a glimpse of what lies ahead for the Band. Since it's inception in 2004, Harvey Swagger Band has unleased a number of demo recordings to the Sydney music community, all to positive responses. The Band's first EP promises to be the best representation to date of it's ultimate musical destination. According to Harvey the release offers listeners "a swaggering blend of alt-country and indie rock." In a live setting the band can draw from either of these styles, or it can lurch seamlessly into the waiting arms of the blues-fuelled rock or straight out rock'n'roll. EP Review from the Half a Cow CD of the Week - What's the word that sounds like what it is describing? Hang on a tick, I'll go find out. I'm back. After an extended discussion with my colleagues, we decided that what I was after is not onomatopoeia but a simple apt. So: The Harvey Swagger Band has a very apt band name. Fitting was another choice. Yes, they swagger, of course they do. And they swoon and sway, too. The Harvey Swagger Band formed in Sydney in 2004. Lead singer and guitarist Harvey Russell is backed by the Brothers Langman - Aaron on bass and Marcus on the drums. Recently 'the vivacious' Josie Rothwell has been added to the mix on keyboards and vocals. In their bio they say the band's 'rougher edges have been smoothed and it's focus has been renewed'. And they are right. These five songs, at once tough and rollicking, have been given some delicious icing all over the top. Josie's singing alongside Harvey is wonderful and makes these already catchy songs even more delectable. The first three songs could all be A-siders in their own right. Their first song 'Crossfire' comes across as their 'telling white lies', the big hit back in the 80s for the Georgia Satellites. Not that the Harvey Swagger Band sound like the Georgia Satellites but I used to love 'White Lies' a lot and I'm loving 'Crossfire' too. In that half-rock-half-country way. The last song has that tom-tom jungle beat used well by the Hoodoo Gurus. And put to good use here, too. Yes, Harvey Swagger Band is a little bit country (rock) and a little bit pop. They do it sincerely and do it well. - ND.