News & Views » Columns

Motor City Cribs



It seems fitting that the roar from the Hounds Below should be a stone's throw from Ferndale's Alcoholics for Christ meetings. The band is, you'll note, Von Bondies' frontman Jason Stollsteimer's new band, and they rehearse in the attic of the bungalow he just moved into a couple of months ago. Still, it's far enough away from any immediate neighbors "that we can be as loud as we want whenever we want," Stollsteimer says. Not that Christ's boozy disciples would mind at all, but ...

With its angled roof and warm'60s wood paneling, the attic is sonically and period-perfect for the Hounds' take on early rock 'n' roll and soul. And Stollsteimer needs his powerful vocals just to keep up with the band's sonic assault. 

Ben Collins of Lightning Love shares lead guitar with Stollsteimer, the Readies' Ben Luckett mans drums, and Molly Jean of the Decks handles the bass. Those who know Ben Collins from the stripped-down pop shine of Lightning Love might lift an eyebrow hearing him play straight ahead rock 'n' roll, sorta like Heartbreaker Mike Campbell. The rhythm section is as, um, cute as it is tight. Molly Jean brings a Beatle-friendly, melodic bass to the mix while Luckett is the group's secret weapon, with his loose, Mitch Mitchell-y inspired swing and thump behind the kit. Though they've an album's worth of original songs, the Hounds focus these days is touring (they do have a 45 out).

The result is an inspired throwback to the early masters of rock and soul — Roy Orbison, Sam Cooke and Otis Redding. "The Hounds Below reflects the music I listened to growing up as a kid," Stollsteimer says. "I don't think you ever got that listening to the Von Bondies — you just got, yeah, I listened to Minor Threat." 

Check out The Hounds Below on Chicago's JBTV

The Hounds Below appear Saturday, Feb. 6, at PJ's Lager House, 1254 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-961-4668. For more info, go to

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.