Whadya say? Whadya say? cranks the singer in the new track “Leaving While You Stay” from California’s Greg Hoy and the Boys. Amplified like the band is gearing up for an 80s montage style movie, “Leaving While You Stay” has semblances of rock and roll, punk and rockabilly. It’s quite possibly the soundtrack to the world we’re living in – we’re all just going with the flow and not saying anything about it. Or are we that complacent?

Grey Hoy and the Boys sure aren’t. In the music video for “Leaving While You Stay” the Donald J. Trump-clown mask makes the round, including using a cell phone to presumably set off a Twitter storm, and takes on the role of playing the instruments. Posing the rhetorical question to the viewers and the listeners, that if you’re electing a clown to the office, then expect a circus. Hoy is on vocals and guitar, with Dennis Galway on drums and March Nicholson on bass.

The avalanche of sounds, especially from the electric, lead guitar, is fantastic. The backbeat beckons Hoy’s onslaught of vocal prowess in the lines I think you might be leaving, you know you’ve got that feeling. He multiplies those words a few more times, as he does the aforementioned whadya say?, and the song just folds itself into a noisy, fun track. I also think the flavor of the song, the idea that a person is staying in one place, is displayed in the escalating guitar work. It’s also inferred with the Six Million Dollar Man special effects. The rumbling percussion underneath moves the listeners’ legs, adding more motion and movement. The whole backing music is a release of frustration, bursting at the seams, to expand. You can just hear the resentment, the way clenched fists would sound, in Hoy’s guitar. What might come across as limited in the power-pop lyric arena, the far reaching music bed more than makes up for any restraints.

Hoy’s voice is strong. He’s a true front man and lead singer. Astounding as his guitar playing is, his vocals (again, short when it comes to the lyric content), pack a powerful punch in each stanza. There’s a snarl in his voice, that only comes out in certain words like say, but he has this ultra-cool temperament. The synergy happening between Hoy and the rest of the band is made for the type of clubs that audiences aren’t afraid to rush the stage. Or maybe the floor is the stage and the audience surrounds the band. “Leaving While You Stay” lends itself to staying put and being a part of that mosh sound, melting the listener into the frequencies.  

Based in San Francisco, Hoy’s career stats cover over 30 recordings or albums, including several under different names (The Royal Panics, Twice As Bright). Since 2007 he’s ran the record label, 30 Peak. Hoy directed and edited the “Leaving While You Stay” music video and accompanied by Carissa Johnson. The band plans to release additional tracks this year.

Michael Rand

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