Howlin' Maggie

Honeysuckle Strange

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    9
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AllMusic Review by

Howlin' Maggie's Honeysuckle Strange manages to sound both carefully orchestrated and deliciously out of control at the same time. The album is a surprising collage of musical styles, melding booming power chords and excellent hooks with everything from funk (on the first single "Alcohol"), to lounge ("Motel Room"), to grinding R&B ("How the West Was Won"). Compelling lyrics and adventurous arrangements (courtesy of the very talented Harold Chichester) are present throughout, but highlights include the fabulous "I'm a Slut" ("that's why you love me, that's why you hate me too") and the rhythmic strut of "Miss Universe." The latter truly evokes images of long legs pounding on cat-walks and borrows a "beep-beep" chorus straight out of David Bowie's "Fashion" to boot. And although "Jawbreaker" and the Smashing Pumpkins-like "You Are" tread more conventional alt-rock turf, this album is definitely a winner.

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