Niagara Gazette

Night & Day

October 31, 2012

Hawkins doubles down with Do Good Assassins

This ain’t Ron Hawkins’ first rodeo.

It isn’t his first band, either, but the double-disc debut from Hawkins’ latest outfit, Do Good Assassins, is infused with the unmistakable go-big-or-go-home ethos that has earned him his dedicated fan base in Western New York and Southern Ontario over his 30 year career.

 
Hawkins, frontman for the (mostly) disbanded Lowest of the Low, and his latest bandmates have compiled an uncommon set of songs — uncommon because they cross genres and traverse the musical landscape — and have compiled them on a once-sacred but now almost unheard of double album. 

 
To hear Hawkins describe it, “Rome” is woven from strings of decadence and decay. It’s an apt metaphor for a medium that includes some of rock’s greatest offerings: “London Calling,” “Blonde on Blonde” and “Exile on Main Street” to name a few. 
Decadent music and a decaying art form. These are places Hawkins knows. And he fully acknowledges walking in to that space, a musician should be wary.

 
“We called it ‘Rome’ as a double debut disk,” Hawkins said by phone from his home in Toronto. “How ballsy can we be with the first record for this band?”

 
To be sure there’s no lack of courage in this offering, but after decades spent earning an audience Hawkins figures if it feels right it’s worth the risk. The first disc is all country, very much in the mold of his two most recent solo offerings, “10 Kinds of Lonely” and “Straightjacket Love.” The second disc is the kind of tight and tough rock-and-roll that first garnered attention with Lowest of the Low. 

 
Those loyal fans will get their chance to hear the entire new catalogue, front to back, in back-to-back shows at Mohawk Place in Buffalo Friday and Saturday nights. 

 

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