It gave me great pleasure when I found this 7" in my post box, because I'm a big fan of WHOOPING CRANE. I guess you're now wondering why I don't have mentioned the name STRANGE HAZE. The answer is very easy: When the band was known under the name WHOOPING CRANE, I received their excellent MCD 'Riffin' For Rent' (review here). Shortly thereafter this Brooklyn-based band changed the name to STRANGE HAZE - it is as simple as that. So, this 7" is their debut vinyl release and apart from the name change and a line-up change, things have largely remained the same, something I am extremely happy about.
This 7" is definitely a winner and oozes quality through and through. STRANGE HAZE can write a song. Holy hell. The first one, 'Let Me Hear The Dropping Pin', is a hard grovin' uptempo cut, which is were I think the band reigns supreme. It's obvious that STRANGE HAZE love James Gang and early Grand Funk Railroad but actually they can stand on their own dusty feed. Big Sir aka Michael Lo is a highly gifted guitarist and a good singer, who is supported by a really tight rhythm section (bassist Keith Avenue and drummer Bushwick Ronnie).
That can be heard again on the flipside, where 'Test Driver' kicks my ass from here to eternity. What a great side of a 7". The worst thing about this single is that it is only a single. I need more! Again, STRANGE HAZE delivers a spicey, blistering sonic cocktail of addictive, hook laden riffs and melodies. There is no other way than pumping up the volume and rip off the knob. And now, dear guys, go into the studio and record an album before my time is over.