The cover of Loafer’s Hollow closely resembles that of Red Hot, Mostly Other People Do the Killing’s album from 2013. Bass trombonist Dave Taylor sits in front of the other six standing members of the band, who all look amused, shocked or puzzled. The pose isn’t self-parody but rather another of the band’s riffs on a jazz portrait—Jelly Roll Morton’s Red Hot Peppers, though Morton looked like he was dispensing wisdom while Taylor looks like he wants to finish reading.
The image reflects a continuation of the previous album’s concept, taking on early jazz, in this case the music of the 1930s and ’40s. As on Red Hot, the group expands to a septet, adding Taylor (bass trombone), Brandon Seabrook (banjo) and Ron Stabinsky (piano) to the core of Jon Irabagon (tenor and sopranino saxes), Moppa Elliott (bass, compositions) and Kevin Shea (drums). Steven Bernstein replaces original trumpeter Peter Evans.