Brooklyn’s The End Men have built themselves a kick ass debut with their EP ‘Build It Up’. Matthew Hendershot’s voice will inevitably be likened to Tom Waits, and that’s probably a welcome comparison. There is also a ‘Waitsian’ easy cleverness to the lyrics and their delivery. One could be forgiven for thinking they were hearing a batch of newly unearthed rarities from the Waits vaults.
But, It would be a mistake to define The End Men by the Waits comparison. These songs are awesome and have a character of their own. At a time when popular rock and roll seems to have lost the swing gene, I give a big, stinging high five to The End Men for swinging us around by the tail. I picture them in an ancient barroom so humid you could lick the air above a packed crowd all bare shoulders and hair and hats and whirling sweaty cut dances.
The songs on ‘Build It Up’ sit together like old drinking buddies. Livia Ranalli’s rhythms do that thing where they’re tight as hell yet roomy and comfortable like an old coat – it’s that swing thing. Jason Godbey’s guitar tones are deliciously timeless. Glue it all together with Hendershot’s gravely vaudrock stylings and we pop out of street drain into another world. ”Fuck it. Lets go put some records on.”
The fact that they produced ‘Build It Up’ themselves in their brooklyn loft is just icing on the cake for me. The DIY attitude is alive and well and they did a hell of a job. Build It Up is a lush, dirty, clean, close, spacious recording. The End Men land in our laps with well deserved confetti in their hair. ♣PR&R
Check out The End Men and have a listen to ‘Build It Up’ on their website: TheEndMen.com