Review: The Groove Merchants – Take It

Artist: The Groove Merchants
Album: Take It (LISTEN)
Released: Aug. 9, 2016
Genre: Blues/Funk/Rock

Need New Year’s Eve plans? Ring in 2017 with The Groove Merchants at The Hamilton Kitchen beginning at 9 p.m. Details here.

The Groove Merchants have gained a reputation for their big sound, funky rhythms, and stellar musicianship. They deliver on all of those points on their recent full-length effort, “Take It.”

This already-impressive five-piece has taken a leap forward from any prior offering, showing their growth right away on opening track, “Take It If You Want It,” which features the band’s signature, danceable groove from drummer Anthony Guidotti and bassist John Evin Groome. Interesting to note: between all the funk, “Take It If You Want It” departs briefly for an experimental jazz bridge, which ties neatly into the song’s structure due to the band’s ingenuity.

“Hold Your Hand” is another strong track; one in which The Groove Merchants slow things down and show a bit of tenderness. The track features the powerful punch of Dylan Hinnershitz’ trumpet and a particularly soulful performance from vocalist Tye Vallone, whose gravelly voice and unpredictable, yet rhythmic delivery throughout “Take It” further cement him as one of the region’s better blues men.

Another enjoyable selection is the updated fan favorite, “John the Savage.” Sounding more alive and dynamic than its previous incarnations, “John the Savage” features an incredible shredding solo from guitarist Luke Ferracone (who you know, if you’ve seen this band live, can do jaw-dropping things with that axe of his).

Track listing:
1) Take It If You Want It
2) Evilution
3) Hold Your Hand
4) John the Savage
5) The Ride
6) Of the Woods
7) Curtis
8) Vigilante
9) Smoke and Mirrors
10) Quit It
11) Walking Shoes

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