EP REVIEW: House Of Hats “Rivers Will Run”

Four friends – Noddy, Alex, James and Rob – had all experienced success in the music scene on their own, but decided in 2011 that if they all clubbed together and shared their experiences and skills they would be able to raise the bar to new proportions. They wasted little time in releasing their eponymous debut EP, which was received to critical acclaim and bought the troupe the chance to tour. So it is, that just a year or so after forming, House Of Hats are ready to unleash EP number 2 – “Rivers Will Run”.

Opening with the country tinged title track, “Rivers Will Run”, it appears that House Of Hats are about to turn their heel on the serene male/female battle that has defined their sound to date. The romping “Rivers Will Run” is so far beyond a toe-tapper that its opening suggests. A riotous stomp, “Rivers Will Run” may not be terrain commonly trodden by House Of Hats, but this foray warrants a revisit. “Rivers Will Run” is what would happen if The Chapman Family met Phantom Limb and Willie Nelson.

As “Rivers Will Run” storms into the distance, House Of Hats return to the soothing male/female folk bliss that is their signature. This is far from a bad thing. While “Gold” uplifts, “Never Lost” wonders, it is the luscious “Home Is Where The Heart Is” that gets the spine tingling.

“Rivers Will Run” proves that House of Hats were not made to fit a mould. Whatever shape or direction they decide to take, they do so expertly. “Rivers Will Run” may only clock in at four tracks long, but it is easily one of the finest records of 2012. If this is the journey House of Hats can create over four songs, just imagine what they will be able to do on their first full length…

Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Jeremy Williams

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