Album review: GEOFF CARNE AND THE HATZ – Get Close

GEOFF CARNE AND THE HATZ – Get Close

Advision UK [Release date 07.03.16]

At times it’s hard to believe that Geoff Carne and his long time musical partner Mick Hatz are only a duo, but having taken their inspiration from the likes of The White Stripes, they pursue a rip-roaring garage band style of rocking blues that places the emphasis on fuzz box energy and good hooks.

The more you listen to ‘Get Close’ the more you warm to their well written and subtly mixed rocking blues style. They work hard to finds a balance between their natural exuberance and producer Paul Mex’s bigger sonic vision.

Geoff Carne And The Hatz are at their best when they rock out and groove on ‘Giving Me The Blues’, which is a fine example of Carne’s expressive, alliterative phrasing and guitar driven rocking blues.

The ballad ‘Another Piece Of Me’ provides a major stylistic diversion with a catchy ‘oooh’ refrain.  It doesn’t quite capture the grandeur it searches for, but it certainly brings contrast and coherence to the album’s sequencing.

Carne also has a strong enough vocal range to dominate his material and drive his lyrics home, while Mick Hatz locks into the grooves and punctuates some impressive riff driven rock with muscular percussion.

‘Out To The Country’ is an expansive opener with a trademark fuzz led groove, while ‘Lost In You’ is a ripping slice of rock and roll that is topped by buzz guitar, effective harmonies and a hook that somehow reflects the title.

Carne’s energetic style is best encapsulated by the hard driving ‘Shot Down In Ten’, which is full of big cymbal splashes, dirt sounding guitar and a very catchy descending hook.

Some of the songs are self evidently riff driven – check out the tension building drone of the splendid ‘Nine Miles To The Border’ – while Carne’s distorted guitar tones and clanging choruses sometimes owe a debt to Neil Young.

It’s a style that isn’t pursued consistently though, mainly because as Geoff explains on his web site, the singles are recorded as a full band, while the album tracks revert to the duo mode. The latter seems to explain the Spartan title rack on which his vocal draws us in the lyrics on the back of a hypnotic rhythm.

Significantly he chooses to bookend the album with a stripped down version of the title track, which focusses on voice and electric piano, to once again draw the listener into the lyrics.

‘Whatever Will Be’ doesn’t quite fulfil its opening blustery potential, as the belligerent cymbal splashes fail to disguise a lack of the kind of drive that makes the earlier efforts so vital. ‘Who’s Foolin’ Who?’ on the other hand, benefits from the opening hook as the duo snap into a purposeful groove and it’s given a different feel by Carne’s clean guitar lines.

‘Get Close’ certainly rocks hard enough to bring a unique contemporary twist to retro rocking blues. Geoff Carne And The Hatz, effectively take us back to the passion, sweat and commitment that marked out garage bands all those years ago. The difference is that they’ve kept the passion, but added song craft and maturity to give the rocking blues template a real shot in the arm. ****

Review by Pete Feenstra

Pete Feenstra presents his Rock & Blues Show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio every Tuesday at 19:00 GMT, and “The Pete Feenstra Feature” on Sundays at 20:00





Josh Taerk’s latest Sunday Session was streamed on Sunday 17 July.

Check out previous videos here: https://www.facebook.com/getreadytorockradio


David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 GMT, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 31 July 2022.

UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020 and 2021 Finalist) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 GMT as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 2 August 2022.

How to Listen Live?

Click the programming image at the top of the page (top right of page if using desktop)

Listen via Windows Media Player. Click or tap here and “open file”
Listen via other media player (eg. VLC) Click or tap here and “open file”

Get Ready to ROCK! Radio is also in iTunes under Internet Radio/Classic Rock
Listen in via the Tunein app and search for “Get Ready to ROCK!” and save as favourite.

More information and links at our radio website where you can listen again to shows via the presenter pages: getreadytorockradio.com


Power Plays w/c 8 August 2022 (Mon-Fri)
BORN LOST Take Time (Mouthpiece) (Revolver Records)
JAIME KYLE Driving With The Brakes On (Conquest Music)
SCARLET DORN Born To Suffer (SPV Recordings)
HOLDING ABSENCE Coffin (Sharptone Records)
TYRANNOSAURUS NEBULOUS Get Some (Echoed Past Records)
KROOKED TONGUE When The Beaches Bleed (indie)
SKYPILOT Knifed On The Beach (The Distortion Project)

Featured Albums w/c 8 August (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 LESSMAN VOSS Rock Is Our Religion (Atomic Fire Records)
12:00-13:00 H.E.A.T. Force Majeure (earMUSIC)
14:00-16:00 THE SLAMBOVIAN CIRCUS OF DREAMS A Very Unusual Head (indie)



Popular (last 30 days)


This entry was posted in ALBUM REVIEWS, ALBUM REVIEWS (Mobile), ALL POSTS and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply