Album review: DIRTY HONEY – EP/LP


Dirt Records [Release date 20.05.22]

Dirty Honey release this fourteen song album which sees them add 2019’s self-titled EP with their self-titled album released in 2021. It is a timely release to coincide with the band’s summer UK and European tour dates. As vocalist Marc LaBelle says, “It’s an honor to finally bring our music across the Atlantic. I’ve always thought we’d be well-received in the UK and Europe and it just felt right to release both the EP and LP together after having had to wait so long to get there. It really feels like the right time to introduce Europe to our particular brand of Filthy rock n’ roll…”

Joining Marc LaBelle in Dirty Honey are guitarist John Notto, bassist Justin Smolian and drummer Corey Coverstone. They have already opened for the likes of Guns ‘N’ Roses, the Who and Alter Bridge in the US, as well as their own sell out headline tour.

Taking the six song EP first, opener ‘When I’m Gone’ was deservedly a big hit in the US, coming across like the Black Crowes meets AC/DC, although Marc LaBelle doesn’t half sound like Tesla’s Jeff Keith at times. ‘Rolling 7s’ shows off their bluesy side with ‘Down The Road’ one for the Skynyrd fans and lovers of quality southern rock. ‘Break You’ has a beast of a bass riff from Justin Smolian, just one part of one the EP’s strongest songs.

Turning to the album we have the groovy ‘California Dreamin’ starting things off nicely. A crowd pleaser in the live arena if ever there was one. ‘The Wire’ again tips their musical hat to AC/DC, with ‘Take My Hand’ having a lovely 70’s rock feel. Dirty Honey would be a great co-headliner with the reactivated the Answer as both have similar musical roots and sound.

They throw the proverbial kitchen sink into the album’s showpiece ballad ‘Another Last Time’. Bit of Hammond here, some gospel over there and an exquisite solo from John Notto. ‘Gypsy’ shakes the old dandruff with an infectious chorus and drums that drives the song home & dry.

Dirty Honey have made a big impression in their homeland and will doubtless be welcomed big time by UK & European rock fans this summer and beyond. Mightily impressive southern blues based rock, although sadly no bonus songs for fans who got into the band ahead of their summer tour. ****

Review by Jason Ritchie

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