Hobex, Wisteria | MUSIC: Homebrew | Indy Week
Pin It

Hobex, Wisteria 

Leave it to Chapel Hill's Greg Humphreys and his band Hobex to create a CD like Wisteria. Their latest album recalls the warm, linty familiarity we had with vinyl records before the flashy, sparkling quality of compact discs came along and ruined it for everyone. On Wisteria, Hobex gives us some of the elements we've come to miss in music, among them the dual-sided personality of the LP and the intimacy supplied by stripped-back, economic recordings that hark back to a time when passion never got lost in production.

It's no shocker that Hobex's musicians joyride down memory lane with their revered back-porch, blue-eyed soul on the first half of the album, which includes songs like the Al Greenish "Ain't Pushin' Baby" and the festive, "Say Yeah!" But it is quite something that Humphreys allows us to be a part of the songs that make up the "flip side." These tracks, seemingly still in blueprint form, are beautiful, heartbroken love letters that "she" will never hear, set to a lonely, 4 a.m. guitar. Although Humphreys is helped along by bassist Andy Ware and Squirrel Nut Zipper Jimbo Mathus on guitar, these latter songs are so intimately his that it feels like snooping just to be within earshot. Whether it's the Mathus-penned "Stop Startin' Over" or the cover of Sam Cooke's "That's Where It's At," Humphreys' versions let us come so close we even hear his callus hit the bass string. "My Heart Is A Radio" is one of the album's loveliest tunes: Humphreys' guitar weaves masterfully through the lyrics, "I tune you in/I tune you out/You don't even know what I'm about/I tune you out."

Wisteria may be a bummer for some Hobex diehards because of its overall lack of windows-rolled-down-all-the-way spirit|and that concept is nothing new for this band. --lynn bryan|but the step the group has taken here--a step back --demands respecct.

Latest in MUSIC: Homebrew

More by Lynn Bryan


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in MUSIC: Homebrew

Twitter Activity


I have "The Beauty of 23" and absolutely love it. Like most artists today, the lyrics for the cd were …

by lyriclooker on Glory Fountain (MUSIC: Homebrew)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation