Album, Single and EP Reviews



  Sweet as the Grain by The John Henrys

Sweet as the Grain cover art

Artist: The John Henrys
Title: Sweet as the Grain
Catalogue Number: True North Records
Review Format: CD
Release Year: 2008

Looking at the cover of the album, I thought that unnamed band that features in the Budweiser adverts had sailed a CD to Bluesbunny. Thankfully, that was not the case. The John Henrys hail from Ottawa, Canada but don't be fooled by that. They are in fact pretty good!

It's an album that fluctuates from the country-rock yardstick of the title track to the raucous '70s truck stop rock 'n' blues of "Thought Yourself Lucky" but never fails to please. Front man Rey Sabatin Jr's vocals are given suitable support from the rest of the band while the songs are well structured and accessible. You get the impression that these guys recorded this album after whitewashing their opposite numbers in the Kings of Leon in an arm wrestling contest.
"New Years" is a song that anyone who has got drunk, got laid, and woken up in a new year will instantly understand. Indeed, the expected theme of debauchery that tends to come with dirty rock 'n' roll is plentiful. We even get a modicum of sentiment on "Angel" but, even then, it's far from your standard love song. This one was made for bar room sing-a-longs. "Golden Train" is a suitably senseless close to the album. Presumably, this song will be the instigator of many a bar room brawl.

Fans of the Stones or the Bottle Rockets will surely lap up this offering. Rich in depraved lyrics and similarly filthy guitar licks, it's rock 'n' roll as rock 'n' roll was intended. Loud, dirty and proud!
Review Date: October 26 2008