Paulelmo's Blog

Kaleo: “Way Down We Go,” “Hot Blood” and “I Can’t Go On Without You”

Maybe you’re already onto Kaleo, because apparently they go back a bit farther than when I first heard them yesterday, but I’m a dinosaur and I get music later here than they get things in Boise. Oh yeah, Boise’s the last to get everything. You don’t believe me, you can take a swatch watch out there and listen to all them Idahoans exclaim about the future and how it must be the devil’s work. (If you do go, send my sister a postcard, because she likes that, and neither of us has ever been.)

But I do get music late. My friend Colby Wayne Snyder tells me that I should get Spotify Premium, but he doesn’t realize that I can’t handle getting all of that new music like that; I’d want to write about it all, and I can imagine my head would go all Scanners-esque that I couldn’t.

So, I finally got around to Kaleo. I heard them on 105.7, and I now realize that I probably would have heard the song sooner if I wasn’t too cheap to put a stereo system in a VW Beetle with 344,000 miles on it.

The song they played was “Way Down We Go,” and I was hooked. I Shazammed it, and when I got home I pulled up a play list of the band’s music on YouTube.

The last time I did this was with The Revivalists after hearing the song “Wish I Knew You.” Like that song, the Kaleo tune grabbed me with it’s vibe. What is different between the two bands is that I enjoyed more of Kaleo’s music than I did The Revivalists’.

Kaleo is an Icelandic blues band. I know, that alone would sell you on them, wouldn’t it? I can’t imagine that many of you woke with other thoughts this morning than the hopes of unearthing some good Icelandic blues.

Now, I’m funny about the blues. If you don’t play the blues really well, you’re not going to get my attention. The interesting thing about the blues–it’s the same with jazz and bluegrass–is that few people play the blues poorly, yet there is still so much of the genre that I can’t get into. Well, these guys, I can get into.

The songs in the title were memorable enough to put there, but there were other strong tunes as well. And this isn’t a one-dimensional blues band; of those three mentioned, one is a straight up slowed down blues jam (“Can’t Go On…”), one is a frenzied blues rocker (“Hot Blood”), and the other is just a smooth vibe down the middle.

So, if you’re looking for something that might be–not so–new, these guys might fill a void.

Rock on, party monsters!

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