A Band of Bees wants you to Free the Bees.
On their second full-length album, the Isle of Wight duo returns, not only to the fold but also to some classic rock roots. I donâ€™t really remember liking the Bees music in the past, but the first time I put on Free the Bees, something was different. I was immediately drawn in to their retro sound, combining some elements of â€˜70s arena rock but heavily falling back toward the sound of the original British invasion of the â€˜60s. Band of Bees takes its cue from groups like the Zombies and the Turtles, developing a neo-psychedelic sound that hasnâ€™t been heard in a long time.
The song “Horsemen” exemplifies what I’m saying. One whirl and you’re back in the van smokin’ weed sitting on the deep, brown shag run – not a very stylish image, but you know you want to go there. But listen to “Go Karts” and the sound reflects Sgt. Peppers-era Beatles – with swirling psychedelic keyboards that make you feel like you’re on a merry-go-round, while their first single, “Chicken Payback,” riffs on original rock ‘n’ roll grooves when the sound was still owned by black artists.
Free the Bees shows a band taking chances with a sound that many people mock but deep down look at it as a guilty pleasure. The album is available on import right now, but comes out in the States in June.
Check out some tracks.