The Tomahawks' debut album, Cut Loose, clocks in at a pretty quick 35 minutes, but it’s plenty of time for this Chapel Hill band to prove that they could be the next local band everybody is talking about.
Even in its most intense moments, The Tomahawks’ music has a rolling feel and is generally laid back. The album starts out in a more pop-flavored direction, but gradually shifts to Americana as it progresses.
Beyond the energetic opener “Dear Mary,” the first half of Cut Loose isn’t as well developed as it could be. Most of the songs feel almost there, but they are missing something — a wittier lyric or a catchier melody — that could make them more memorable.
Beginning with “Nothing Changes,” the songs change from tunes that sound nice in the background to tunes that are begging for sing-a-longs. “Where Are You” is bound to inspire some rowdy crowds at bars around the Triangle.
The album finishes with arguably its best songs. There are simple, but strong lyrics on both “When You Dance” (“It’s easier to fall in love when you dance”) and “Loneliness Crosses Your Mind” (“If time can tear the concrete apart/ imagine what it can do to your heart”). The snare rolls and chorus line “ooohs” at the end of the latter make for a satisfying ending to the album.
Cut Loose takes it’s time warming up, but its fantastic finish overshadows its early lull and should put The Tomahawks on your local band watch list.
The Tomahawks will have a CD release party with Floating Action and Josh Moore at Local 506 on October 15. Tickets are $7.