I knew NOTHING about Bobaflex when my friend Doug asked me to check them out, and I do mean nothing. My education came quickly though, in the form of their sixth album Charlatan’s Web released last month. This is quite frankly, a no bullshit straight-up rocking album start to finish. I was pleasantly surprised.
The first thing I dug was the intro “Love Letter From a Booking Agent” that was funny while at the same time an all too true representation of what goes on in this business. I must’ve listened to it about ten times. After the agent’s kiss-off the band jumps into “Never Coming Back” with all guns blazing. Vocal duties are shared in the band by brothers Shaun and Marty McCoy who both play guitar as well, and their voices work well together. “Wading Through the Dark” is next and features an almost reggae-type of groove on the verses before speeding up on the choruses. Leadoff single and video “Bad Man” is a sweet blend of Southern swamp boogie and the dirty rock sound of yesteryear that is one of the bright spots on the record, and is reportedly doing well on SiriusXM radio, with good reason.
The shared vocals are especially good on “I’m Glad You’re Dead” a song that’s pretty self-explanatory, no? “Pretty Little Things” sounds almost Nickelbackesque in places, and that’s fine, because they happen to be one of my favorite bands. Things escalate quickly for “Losing My Mind” a song about the descent into addiction and madness, and not necessarily in that order. It’s another great one.
I didn’t know WHAT the hell to make of “School For Young Ladies” when I first heard it. My initial reaction was not good, but by the third or fourth listen I stopped hating it. It’s still not one of my favorites though, and it seems a bit forced. The guys get back on track with “Strangle You” a good bar song if ever I’ve heard one. This song, like much of the album was made for drinking to.
The album closes things out with “Rogue” showcasing a multi-layered vocal harmony throughout, and a killer guitar groove snaking through the song as well. Having three guitars suits Bobaflex, and with their Southern swagger they at times remind me of a heavier Collective Soul. All told, I enjoyed Charlatan’s Web. It reminds me of a time when people didn’t overthink music. They just plugged in and rocked out. And that’s what Bobaflex does. I’m very curious to see/hear these guys in a live setting; I’m sure it’s a rollicking good time.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Bad Man”. “I’m Glad You’re Dead”, “Pretty Little Things”, “Never Coming Back”