It appears as though the majority of up-and-coming rock bands of the 21st century are all about fine-tuning their songs with Pro Tools, to the point that the top hits often sound like a pitch-perfect android fronting a bunch of robot rockers. Thankfully, there are also bands like Healing Sixes, who haven't forgotten what the great rock bands of the 1970s sounded like -- a bunch of longhairs letting it rip, while trying to keep it sounding as close to "live" as possible. And this approach certainly pays off on their 2010 release, Blue Jay. Granted, they may not be breaking new ground musically -- Lynyrd Skynyrd meets AC/DC, with a dash of Black Crowes, is a fitting description of many of the tunes here -- but Healing Sixes pull it off convincingly. Whereas some "retro" groups are content with merely re-creating authentic rock sounds, and don't have the compositional skills to back it all up with strong hooks and memorable songwriting, Healing Sixes certainly have the tunes, cases in point being such standout tracks as "Superhot," "Walked Away," and "You Want It?" Also included is "Fine Time," which features special guest Joe Bonamassa on guitar, as well as more laid-back fare as the album-opening "Bluejay on the Wrenhouse" and the album-closing "That's Alright." Real-sounding, honest-to-goodness rock & roll still exists in the early 21st century, as evidenced by Healing Sixes' Blue Jay.
AllMusic Review by Greg Prato
feat: Joe Bonamassa