The BLOODHOUNDS play Blues / R&B rock n’roll with a fresh, edgy, almost punk edge, and add a hint of a Latin groove to the mix. These guys are from East LA, and if you haven’t heard the news, that’s where it’s all goin’ down these days!
Though founded on electric sound they also dig the old jug band style of playing. Picking up cheap acoustic guitars, turning ordinary household items into instruments and constructing a traditional washtub-broomstick bass, they often busk in the streets of downtown Los Angeles to the delight of large crowds.
The band, formed by Aaron “Little Rock” Piedraita on rhythm guitar, Johnny Santana on bass, Branden Santos on lead guitar, and Mark Schafler on drums and percussion, was discovered by Arthur Alexander (The Poppees, Sorrows) who has produced their debut album “Let Loose!”.
East Los Angeles-based, garage rock foursome the Bloodhounds strike up a storm on their blues-belching debut, Let Loose! Through a dozen tracks, which total 42 minutes, the band blends a morsel of punk, heaps of hard R&B, electric blues and garage rock influences into a potent mix, brimming over with hard-riffing guitars, rambunctious rhythms and stripped-down bravado.
The harmonica-enriched “Wild Little Rider” and the Stones-meets-Jonathan Richman “Crackin’ Up” reconnect with the high-octane, garage-soul of antecedents such as Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, the Kingsmen and other, likeminded groups.
The Chicago electric blues scene is an obvious inspiration for “The Wolf,” a lo-fi cut, which notably nods to Howlin’ Wolf, particularly with its shuffling beat, steely slide guitar and lyrics about the title character’s nocturnal rambling.
The Bloodhound’s initial single, the psych-rocker “Try a Little Reefer,” echoes another L.A. outfit, the Seeds, with an account about a young man’s initiation into illicit recreational drug use.
The Bloodhounds are also known to do a bit of sidewalk busking, and that side of their sound is at the forefront of folk-tinged, jug band replications that include “Olderbudwiser,” the cautionary tale about the dangers of drinking, and “Dusty Bibles and Silver Spoons,” a sobering story about one man’s drug abuse and loss of faith. These two songs have a swinging attitude but somber undertones that perfectly capture the Bloodhounds’ philosophy: party up, but keep your head clear. – Doug Simpson / CAMPUS CIRCLE
East Los Angeles has a long and proud tradition of bands and fans that create and love good old American rock & roll. East L.A.’s the Bloodhounds are true to that spirit with this debut release. Well-wrought original tunes that are a throwback to cool ‘60s blues-influenced rockers include the opening track, “Indian Highway.” “Hey Lonnie” features some old-timey saloon piano styling and a megaphone vocal! These guys clearly have a bunch of old Pretty Things, Yardbirds and ? and the Mysterians records in their collections. It’s all done with a grand love of making music, with swell musical instincts from a band that clearly enjoys playing together, and doing it well. – Brett Bush / MUSIC CONNECTION
As well as the classic two guitars, bass and drums set up, The Bloodhounds make the most of cheap instruments and household objects. Washboards, banjos and kazoos sit happily in the mix. With a sound roooted in '60s rhythm and blues there's also a hint of punk. The overall effect is akin to Joey Ramone fronting The Pretty Things.
The Wolf pays homage to bluesman Howlin' Wolf, with guitar parts based around Hubert Sumlin's Spoonful guitar lick. Elsewhere there's echoes of Star Club era Beatles, Lonnie Donegan, early Stones and the afore-mentioned Pretty Things.
The band are something of an anomaly in today's pro-tools era, and go against the grain of modern polished pop, but those of us in search of the true spirit of rock 'n' roll will dig it! – HARMONIC DISTORTION
A band with Latin roots, the Bloodhounds can’t help but bring to mind “another band from East L.A.,” though the influence is less direct in their songs. What is there is that same love of classic R&B, early rock and garage punk, with cuts like “Wild Little Rider” and “Crackin’ Up” sounding like 60s era nuggets. Bucking the theory that you can’t judge a band by one song title, there’s the immediate classic “Try a Little Reefer”. The sloppy electric guitar, overamplified harmonica, underlying organ and gang vocals give you exactly what you’d expect/hope for with a name like that. – Scott Fowley / ROUTES & BRANCHES
The ‘Hounds make it fresh, sounding like they’re having a blast jumpin’ in the night through “Saint Dee,” “Indian Highway” and a cover of Bo Diddley’s “Crackin’ Up.” The band also goes for a more overtly bluesy vibe on “The Wolf” and “Bottle Cap Blues.” The surprise, however, comes from “Olderbudwiser,” “Hey Lonnie” and “Dusty Bibles & Silver Spoons,” which dig even further back to the U.K.’s brief but memorable skiffle craze – not an influence usually heard, especially not from a band this young. It’s that kind of open-mindedness that make the Bloodhounds more than just a retro revivalist bar band and Let Loose an auspicious debut. – Michael Toland / BLURT Magazine
We’ll take a triple dose of this bluesy garage-rock! RIYL early Stones, Yardbirds and Nuggets. – The BIG TAKEOVER
The band has a Stones-y retro sound drenched in Farfisa organ and harmonica. – CELEBSTONER
Classic rock and roll R&B - imagine if Bob Dylan was born and raised in East L.A. and you have the sound of The Bloodhounds. – DISCOVER L.A.
Rockabilly, garage rock, blues and retro psych vibes run thick through the veins of Los Angeles band The Bloodhounds. There’s a major vintage feel going on in their new record, perfectly titled Let Loose! Hard-rocking, bluesy harmonica, uninhibited yelps and howls, a banging tambourine, and sultry guitar melodies abound on “Bottle Cap Blues”, while a tinge of surf rock can be heard on “Crackin’ Up” and “Security”. And psychobilly shows up a bit on the darkish “Saint Dee”, while “Dusty Bibles and Silver Spoons” is more of a corn-pickin’ country number. Any way you slice it, you’ll probably have found your new favorite band once you get done with Let Loose! – READ THE HORN
Play with maximum emphasis placed on good old fashioned rock’n’roll. – The MAD MACKEREL
Tight, fresh and original. – RUST MAGAZINE