WILLY AND THE PLANKS – “Willy and the Planks”

Willy and the Planks plays with a psychedelic bluesy grit with their heartfelt self-titled effort. Sung with such fury, the songs work as meditations on a life lived most fully. Neatly referencing the blues greats while still incorporating their own style, Willy and the Planks crafts carefully laid out stories, mere snapshots of what it means to truly be one with the world. Guitar work has a rustic quality, with the right level of energy and twang to it, revealing a great flexibility. Adding to this fervent spirit the percussion has a powerful presence, working on a time-keeping mission as well as an emotional one, incorporating wonderful flourishes into the mix. Further emphasizing this the long-extended cuts further explore more hypnotic pastures.

“Keep Your Hands Off Her” introduces the album with such style, taking its time in unfurling slowly. Featuring a driving rhythm, the track has a slow-burn quality to it. Even more atmospheric “The Dark Side Of Me” goes for a late-night vibe to it at times even veering into a late 60s spirit to it. Hyperactivity pours out of the adventurous “Miss Maybelle”. Right in the very heart of the album is the true highlight the incredible fire of “You Got Me Cryin”. A delicate sly touch drives “Lonely Town Lonely Streets” forward. Nicely wrapping everything up the humor of “See That My Grave Is Kept Clean” brings the album to a close.

On their self-titled effort, Willy and the Planks sing with such assured experience, resulting in a timeless classic.


By Michelle Rivera