“Black Owls don't plunder '70's Glam Rock for influence, they pound it down like a Jack and Coke, let it soak into their flesh and then launch it back into the modern world with the visceral impact of pissing on an electric fence. Of course, there's that Tabasco dash of New York '70's Punk heat in there as well, but the quality that binds the whole concoction together is Black Owl's sturdy Midwestern foundation, a Rock solid belief that what the do is not only important but essential.”
“References to Guided By Voices commonly appear in write-ups for Granville, Ohio, four-piece rock band Black Owls, who, like GBV, are amplified to rock and have a good feel for personalizing a late-’60s, early-’70s classic-rock sound.”
"Images of Neil Young meets Black Sabbath meets Bob Dylan meets The Who. Blahhh, why try and define their sound. They are the Black Owls and they are classic rock made for the current decade. Along from a great set, we spent some time with the band and they are 5 of the nicest dudes I have ever hung out with."
"Last night at NXNE, there were the Black Owls and then there was everyone else. For me, the Black Owls are like a cross between the Talking Heads and the Tragically Hip led by frontman David Butler whose quirky vocals brought images of David Byrne. Incredible performance and I'm looking forward to following them in the future. "
“Black Owls is the latest self-titled album from the Ohio garage rockers. This double album is packed with 25 hard edged in your face tracks, but there is so much more. Black Owls meld together influences from blues, punk and classic rock to make you feel that the Rolling Stones have been reincarnated into a new band. This is a heady comparison that Black Owls wear to perfection. This is another must have album for your indie rock collection. Stream and buy Black Owls at the link below. ”
“The thing that Black Owls does infinitely well is mash their British Invasion/Punk influences into a thick paste and apply it in broad trowel strokes to their distinctly Midwestern presentation, crafting a sound that is both maddeningly familiar and strikingly original. Dig: A parallel-earth Ian Hunter is born in Detroit and forms a garage-band Mott the Hoople after seeing Mitch Ryder and Iggy Pop, and still manages to obsess over Dylan and Bowie.”
“The blazing favorite sons of Ohio, the Black Owls headliner show at Midpoint Music Festival - nothing short of astonishing. For over an hour, the Black Owls howled like a summit meeting between Mott the Hoople and the Voidoids, blistering Punk anthems butting up against Hard Rock nuggets to create a third sound that references much but sounds like nothing else. And the capacity crowd at Arnold’s loved every original note of it, begging for more and getting it at the end of a fantastic set. The Black Owls are a sound salvation, the Black Owls are cleaning up the nation. Don’t miss them, the next or any time.”
“Rip-snorting Sabbath-esque rock n roll from the deepest, darkest thickets of Ohio. Dark pilgrims sets to colonize the new rock territories.”
“Black Owls are creating that kind of imaginary rock and roll some dream about, and many strive for. Strange magic with candor and tension. Blunt and stripped down, but captivating. Drawing upon British Invasion, both classic and punk, as well as a very personal take on Americana heavy 70's gas. Deliverance of story, glamorous punk and gritty, in lyrics that though dark reveal a well kept irony and freshness. The hook and ladder of Ed Shuttleworth's guitar range is so wide and yet it all manifests the "Black Owl Sound." That sound rests on the unique structures that Ed creates which uniquely reveal a perfect Gang of Four, the Who, Stones, Clash, Wire, Hoople, Stooges melange. They don't sound like any of these bands, but they sound like all of these bands, and that's their dirty little secret. Black Owls wear their influences on their sleeves, but they don't sound like anybody else. Play it again. ”
“This central Ohio band pimps the kind of stripped-down Classic Rock (think more T Rex than AC/DC) that's been the soundtrack to beer-swilling pub dwellers for more than four decades now. Butler's high-pitched delivery comes through loud and clear, giving voice to simple, dark-hued stories laced with the occasional head-sticking nugget, such as "When I'm cremated you'll smoke my ashes." Dig it: The Who, The Rolling Stones cut with Midwestern menace, Guided by Voices. ”
“Somebody recommended several weeks back that I check out Black Owls, a band from Ohio, describing the music as a mixture of psychedelic blues and glam-punk. Good call. The band's second album shows off a sense of classic, take-no-prisoners rock 'n' roll, with an undercurrent of just enough artsy pretention. The rambling poetry and insouciance with which David Butler—who also plays drums—attacks his vocals recall Ian Hunter, and the band kicks it into overdrive like Mott the Hoople jamming with The Faces, but with the threat of the English punk-rock movement breathing down their necks. With the spirits of Iggy, Morrison, Bowie and early Alice Cooper hanging over it, the album feels genuine and a little stoned, as if it's observing a culture in which Woodstock is long over, and Altamont has left the music world with a sour taste in its mouth. Decadent and ramshackle and glorious, it kinda makes me cry.”
“While Lost in the Trees angelic choir played into the main stage witness, I stepped out of the back to bear witness to a down-home soap box revival. Ohio's Black Owls were testifying on high, and the lead singer washed his sins in the rain with the congregation. As if in preparation for the rapture, the seasoned glam punks whipped the soaking masses into a frenzy. It was one of the most honest, raw, and downright celebratory performances of the show. I'd heard that these guys bore a familiarity with Guided By Voices, and I could see they owned that same swagger and dedication to anthem rock windmills and catchy hooks. As far as visceral experiences, these guys captured my heartstrings, and it appeared that the huge wet crowd that poured in to see them felt the same. A+”
“This is "put your back into it" song craft. These guys lay it out. Lyrics, structure, power. It's almost a lost art, but thank God there are dudes like the Black Owls preserving the national trust of rock. Check out June '71 on their own Amish Girl label on itunes or bandcamp. - Compare/Contrast: Rolling Stones, Guided by Voices, Mott the Hoople, Bowie, Jim Carroll Band”
"Strange, beautiful things take place after the sun goes down, and the Black Owls revel in an all-nighter guitar sound that burns brightly in the dark. Lightning Made Us Who We Are, their 2008 debut album, is a masterful slice of booze-fueled super rock."
“With Guided by Voices long gone, the Black Owls are filling a real void in our lives, creating pompous, over-the-top-rock without making pains to show how tongue-in-cheek they are. They have a knack for well-crafted, substantial rock songs that are catchy as hell.”
“Black Owls are an anomaly in Amish country. The Owls push a garage-rock agenda that also draws from the British Invasion, new wave, glam and '70's post-punk. And despite the varied influences, this crew has fashioned its favorite styles into a focused and infectious sound.”
“...for those about to rock, you may want to make the introduction of Black Owls. Chocked full of windmill-worthy tracks, Black Owls sift through their collection of Cheap Trick, Bowie, and The Who albums and serve up something distinct from their respective source material.”
“The Black Owls rock. They rock like the Ramones rock, like early Bowie and Iggy and the Stooges rock.”
“THE BLACK OWLS have put together some of the best well crafted songs with a firm foothold in creating a new history for Rock n' Roll.”