When you are a guitar and drum duo it’s hard to separate yourself from the hordes of other two-piece bands out there, so you better be damn good to get some attention.
Luckily for Portland, Oregon’s Kool Stuff Katie, they have their shit together.
Where a lot of the duos rely heavily on blues influences or are trying to be the next White Stripes, Kool Stuff Katie revel in garage pop mixed with a foolhardy punk delivery. But dig a little deeper into their latest long player and you will find much more to sink your teeth into. The melodies are infectious, the hint of surf rock is a nice touch, and the distortion-fueled guitars make it hard not to bob your head back and forth to the rhythms.
Saren Oliver is a powerhouse behind the drum kit, crashing cymbals with deft precision and beating up her kick drum and snare like it tried to steal her lunch money. She also shares vocals with guitarist and singer Shane Blem, who leads the way with his power chords and guitar fills.
‘It’s Fine’ (producer Steve Fisk), is more than just a fine record, it’s fantastic, and I am sorry I was late to the game finding this gem in the stack. Clearly, Kool Stuff Katie is one of my most overlooked bands of 2015.