Craig Cornett and the Phast and Wreckless

Ando’s Album Reviews:


Craig Cornett and the Phast and Wreckless: My New Hat


Craig and the gang have been in our local scene for a few years now and over that time they have become a much beloved musical act here in Longmont and across the Front Range. Their live shows are energetic, art centric, and very original. This essential vibe is well transferred into the studio on this new album “My New Hat”. I can wholeheartedly recommend the purchase of this new collection to you, dear reader, because it is perhaps one of the best sounding albums to be produced by a band in town so far this year. The tones are all even and very well mixed. Recorded and mixed by Ray Smith at Byrd Nest Recording in Rollinsville, Colorado, an experienced listener will likely be able to tell a quality difference between this and most home recorded efforts. Vocals are clear without being squeaky and they The acoustic guitar, which is always a tough instrument to record, sounds loud enough in the mix to stand up to the rest of the band while still keeping its acoustic tone in tact. This is no small feat. I love the dryness of that guitar sitting so perfectly in the mix on top of the drums, bass, electric guitar, and vocals.


Writer and front man for the band is Craig Cornett. While his tunes are all very lyric-centric they also feature some fairly complicated melody work. With help from the Phast and Wreckless Craig is lifted up and enabled to fully actualize his work. It is obviously a team effort between these artists to create this unique sound. Susan Cornett, Craig’s talented vocalist wife, sweetly adds a sense of grace to the tracks in this collection. Tony Perez, lead guitarist, has such a unique feel to his playing that sounds sort of Eastern in influence. He adds a lot of what this band stand out. Jonathan Wright plays a very technical and groovy bass. His playing is like a rug that brings the whole room together. Lastly, Craig “Slappy Hands” Naylon holds down very complex beats on his drums with metronome like precision.


I’m not going to pretend to not be biased here. As a Longmont resident, I have known and been friends with these guys for years and years. I can however honestly feel good about recommending this album not only because the artists are the highest quality of people but because the music is genuinely stirring, catchy, and worth the price of admission.


Notable tracks include “My Way or the Highway”, “Going Over the Mountain”, and “Enjoying the Pain”. The title track “My New Hat” features a lot of killer harmonica playing by Mr. Cornett. It’s a tune about a man who is trying out a new fashion choice. Craig is able to turn anything into a satisfying lyrical experience. Here he takes the awkward feeling of wearing a new hat in front of people and turns it into this relatable and most importantly memorable poem of a song. By the time you read this, the album will be available at all of the group’s live performances. Be sure to make it out to meet these local artists and buy a copy of their album for yourself and one to send home to that weird place you moved here from. Those folks have no idea what they are missing in this music scene. 


Find this album digitally on Spotify, iTunes and all the other usual suspects.