KOOT HOOMI: The Dark Side of Hall and Oates – A Tribute

Koot Hoomi
The Dark Side of Hall and Oates – A Tribute
(Luria Music)

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You’d be hard pressed to find a music lover (or anyone hovering around thirty years of age and above) who has never heard the smooth, pop-rock goodness of Hall & Oates. There is no debating, not only did their musical styles go hand-in-hand, but Daryl Hall’s cool blond mane alongside John Oates’ dark mustache and perm didn’t hurt their alloted airtime during the heyday of MTV either.

There is, however, a good chance that you’ve never heard Hall & Oates quite like they’re presented here in this tribute by Koot Hoomi. Completely reworking the songs in a mostly folk/middle-eastern style, Koot Hoomi dishes up some classic tunes but makes sure not to just cover the huge hits everyone is familiar with.

While a good idea and effort, numerous listenings of this release failed to win me over. I’m all for new interpretations of known compositions but John Hall’s smooth singing delivery and the band’s overall groove, are nowhere to be found here. What makes Hall & Oates so great is completely sucked out of their songs on this album. Again, I love a new twist on a familiar idea but The Dark Side of Hall and Oates came across as weak in my opinion. The existing material provides a strong skeleton to work with, however, these versions never elevate them to interesting enough territory. It’s not completely without it’s nice moments but overall it mostly just made me want to listen to the real Hall & Oates.

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