Thursday, January 18, 2018

Hardworker -- Go Alone

The Durham, NC band Hardworker is drawn some comparison to the Alabama Shakes and, let me tell you, it's well-deserved. Hardworker delivers blistering rock that delivers equal parts Muscle Shoals and Laurel Canyon. Take the Wild Reeds and turn the aggression up a wee little bit and you'll arrive at Hardworker. This is a band that pulls absolutely no punches musically, lyrically, or emotionally. The album came out in July but it's already one of my favorites of the albums I've reviewed this year.

You don't need to get too far into this album to fall in love with Hardworker, but what helped them nestle into my heart is their exuberant feminism. In "A Woman's Weapon," Sus Long proclaims,

I know a woman's weapon
Is a pearl-handled gun
And the right to never trust anyone

Similarly, "Look More Like a Girl" is a delicious deconstruction of gender norms and the music industry with a throwback sound. While these are the two most overt songs, Go Alone is alive with a fierce independence whether it's on the ragers or quiet moments like the stunning "Alcatraz." The band dropped another excellent single in December, which hopefully means this leads to the album that will make 2018 Hardworker's year.

Hardworker -- Official, Facebook, Bandcamp

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