Tear It Down: The Heavy Bring It To Slim’s
Funk, soul, hard rock, pop, and a downright twisted, manically twisting sense of humor are all hallmarks of the Heavy, a band that must be enjoyed live to be believed. I know ‘cause the UK combo had me -- and the Playboy bunnies -- in its sway with its fusion of old-school soul and rock ‘n’ roll aggression last year at South by Southwest’s Playboy bash, as the group opened for Moby, Justice and MGMT. Now the time has come for you to throw down your arms and surrender to the Heavy beat at Slim’s Oct. 27.
Judging from the sound of the English quartet’s sophomore long-player, The House That Dirt Built (Counter/+1), the Heavy is the latest in a line of Anglo soul mavens. To a combustible mixture of James Brown grooves (“How You Like Me Now?”) and good-time blues (“Sixteen”), the foursome adds Screamin’ Jay Hawkins shout-outs, spaghetti western homages, two-tone interludes, and an embrace of pop strings and radio-ready hooks, as well as a guest vocal turn by the Noisettes’ Shingai Shoniwa. “This ain’t no place for no hero,” croons vocalist Swaby on “Short Change Hero.” “This ain’t no place for the better man.” Despite the ministrations of producer Jim Abbiss (Arctic Monkeys, Adele), the all-too-brief House That Dirt Built isn’t the Heavy’s masterpiece, but as a place to party, it’ll do fine as a choice spot to shake your tail feather till a better one comes along.
The Heavy play Tuesday, Oct. 27, 8 p.m., at Slim’s, 333 11th St., SF. Hottub opens. $15. (415) 522-0333, www.slims-sf.com