November 30, 2016

Will Schube has never used the term PBR&B. 

Joe Lewis missed being a star by a few years. The soul-drenched horn soul music he shaped with help from his band, the Honeybears, first came to notoriety in 2007. They played seemingly every mid-day festival slot and put out a few records in 2009, 2011, and 2013. A few years passed, and musicians like Leon Bridges, Anderson .Paak, and Mayer Hawthorne exploded the scene. And now Joe and his Bears return, aiming to piece together the shards of an oversaturated scene.

The first single on the forthcoming Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears record, Backlash, is “PTP,” a loud, aggressive, blazing romp. The horns erupt every few seconds and the guitar is so fuzzy you could use it to describe an actual honeybear—whatever that may be. “PTP” sounds like the Black Keys if the Black Keys actually sounded like anything. It’s soulful, but not in the way the word is so often used to qualify emotion. “PTP” has an actual, beating heart. And at the center of it is Joe Lewis, pasting together the world that looked him over while reminding us that he never left.