The Parting Gifts consist of garage rock duo Greg Cartwright (Reigning Sound, the Oblivians) and Coco Hames (the Ettes, Coco Motion) doing what they do best – playing fast-paced, no frills rock and roll.
Their debut LP Strychnine Dandelion sounds very much like what you would expect if these two musicians got together and gave birth to a music baby. Cartwright’s high energy, 60s-influenced rock and roll songwriting is very well matched by Hames’ similar style, but is interestingly complemented by a female counterpart.
While songwriting credit for all 15 tracks goes to Cartwright and Hames, the album features guest appearances from some of America’s most talented musicians including Dan Auerbach (the Black Keys), Patrick Keeler (the Raconteurs), Jem Cohen and Poni Silver (the Ettes), and Dave Amels (Reigning Sound).
Hames provides balance to Cartwright’s rough and gruff vocals with her somewhat nasal and intense yet pretty voice. The album consists of fierce and to-the-point rock and roll that seems to jump between various influences such as country and sloppy garage rock.
While the album is bulky with 15 songs, the listener is still left wanting more and wondering how long it will be until this couple releases their next album.