Usually when reviewing bands, both independent and well known, that I’ve previously met or have at least seen live, I tend to start off my review about that experience, so I guess I’ll do that again now. I first heard of Little Foot Long Foot this past summer when they opened for The Trews at a show they played by my cottage. I already wasn’t too familiar with The Trews, other than their hits, I just went because my friends paid for my ticket as long as I’d be the designated driver. (I’m sure glad I went because I’ve listened to practically nothing but The Trews since that day) Anyway we got in to the venue and I couldn’t help but be caught off guard by their opening act Little Foot Long Foot. They had a blues based hard rock sound mixed with soul and an unmatchable attitude all with just three members; a guitarist/vocalist, a drummer and a keyboard player, and it just hooked me in to staying and watching them play.
Afterward I had the pleasure of talking to Little Foot Long Foot’s frontwoman Joan Smith for a few minutes before getting their then most recent album Oh, Hell. I mentioned I had a blog and could review it and she told me to instead wait for their new album coming later in the year. She said she’d get it to me, but I honestly didn’t think she was serious with that offer, which is why I was shocked with delight when I actually did find their new EP Woman in my email inbox.
The opening title track Woman starts off with a “woah” chant that creates a mood that is immediately shattered by the powerhouse of hard rock that the band breaks out. Joan’s classic hard rock styled vocals can have the grace and freedom of Kate Bush but also the power of Janis Joplin and her voice gets to both of those points in this song, which starts off the EP in a practically perfect way.
The EP continues to deliver hard rock that won’t stop with the Black Sabbath-esque Mess and the soulful My Word. Both songs are exactly what I’d hope for from a modern hard rock band. They both have a modern rock sound that I usually hear out of rock duos, mostly because of how they are mostly centred on heavy yet simple drum beats and loud guitars, but unlike most of these bands by comparison, Little Foot Long Foot add a classic rock influence that I don’t commonly hear in many bands, regardless of how many members are in the band.
Heavy is the song that best helps sum up my opinion of the band in a nutshell. After rocking as hard as they’ve rocked in the opening three tracks, I’d expected a slower song, and Little Foot Long Foot took that opportunity and ran with it in this ballad that shows the band at their upmost soulful. Jeff Heisholt‘s keyboards with Joan’s vocals and a little help from Gavin Maguire‘s emotional drum beats, all gather together perfectly to make this one of my favourite songs released all year.
Woman ends with The Worst. This track takes all the noise, all the soul, all the rhythm, all the blues and everything in between that I’m forgetting and fits it all in to one two and a half minute track that reminds you, in case you’ve forgotten, just how capable Little Foot Long Foot is of breaking the walls down with every note they play. But cheesy clichés aside, the song does make for a great closer to the EP by not disappointing listeners who love an EP or LP to go out with a bang.
I feel Little Foot Long Foot are a band best heard live. I rarely say that but it’s true. Sure on album they can fix imperfections and make the songs sound as good as possible, but there’s a spontaneity and energy that the band has in their live sets that can’t be put on record. That being said, I’m still impressed with Woman. I do like it more than their previous album Oh, Hell, I feel they took a step forward as recording artists and they will continue to grow as long as they make music. There is a sense of intelligence in these five songs that tell me the band knows what they’re doing but also know that they can always get better with time.
“Woman” – I hate having the obvious choice as my highlight, but it’s only logical. Woman is the catchiest of songs on the EP and it captured the band that their best. The song at its heaviest is the best you’ll hear comparing it to the heaviest moments of the other tracks, and it’s not afraid to take a verse or two to slow things down and show their melodic side.
8 (Out of 10)
|1||Woman||Little Foot Long Foot||3:34|
|2||Mess||Little Foot Long Foot||3:00|
|3||My Word||Little Foot Long Foot||3:49|
|4||Heavy||Little Foot Long Foot||4:46|
|5||The Worst||Little Foot Long Foot||2:52|