If ever a band lived up to the funkiness of their name, Hopetoun Brown is it. The brainchild of Supergroove‘s horn section – Tim Stewart and Nick Atkinson – ‘Burning Fuse’ is their debut album, and as you would imagine, full of the sounds that made them so recognisable in Supergroove. The album was recorded at The Sitting Room in Lyttelton and Auckland studio The Lab.
Fellow Supergroover Karl Stevens provided Road Runner Rocks but the rest were written by the duo. The songs are a joy to listen to, often soulful but for the most upbeat, with contagious rhythms. As with many horn-based albums, jazz is a strong element, and Knitted Into My Bones and instrumental The Melter are fine examples, while a funky swagger makes The Demanding Blues a dance-floor offering. ‘Burning Fuse’ is energetic, with passionate performances. Clearly a labour of love, Atkinson and Stewart have thrown themselves full force into Hopetoun Brown and it shows. Clearly the duo believe in what they do.