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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Little Silver Records artist: Iko-Iko - Bullets In The Bonfire Vol.1 - New release Review

I just received the newest release, Bullets In The Bonfire Vol. 1 from Iko - Iko and its flavorful! A fifteen track retrospective of the band it has a lot of variety. Opening with Party Car, a New Orleans flavored track, the band is really hopping featuring strong vocals from Graham Wood Drout, super sax from Ron Dziubla and traditional drumming from Stewart Jean. Cajun tasting (I Never Had An) American Dream is a party track deluxe with cool lyrics. Celebration rolls more into the R&B styling and it's pop nature. A definite hook and familiar melody makes this a radio stopper. Dziubla really blows the walls out on this one giving it just the right spice. Live track Don't Mess With The Voodoo is a swampy rocker. Mike Bauer and Larry Williams lay out some smokin guitar riffs on this track and I particularly like the drum work of Jean. Miller's Woods has a solid pop rock style and some cool guitar slide riffs by Williams. Mike Mennel adds a cool under line on the bass throughout this track. Late Hours is a slow blues track featuring Bob Hemphill on harp. Drout sets a nice bass line on this track joined by Joseph Anthony Smith on drums and understated guitar soloing by Nick Kane. Returning to a New Orleans flavor and the rich sax and organ work of Dziubla, Pet De Kat is a cool track with a playful nature. Funky track, Snowstorm In The Jungle, gets a bit more rowdy with Drout's aggressive vocals, nice harp work from Hemphill and guitar riffs from Kane. Too High To Drive, is a simple rock n roll track based on a common theme... too much! Doug Leibinger adds a lot of depth on keys and Williams shows his rock riffs. Jalapeno Be Thy Name has a definite Latin/New Orleans. Solid bottom provided by Dziubla and Mennel along with some tasty guitar riffs from Williams makes this one of the more memorable tracks on the release. Walk With The Zombie is a bluesy rock ballad. Williams and Dziubla create a really nice feel on this atmospheric story adding musicality to it's clever lyrics. Riding On The Rims stretches more toward a country folk rocker with Leibinger, Mennel and Jean providing mostly a light backing for Drout's vocals. Another live track, the classic Motherless Children, get a totally rework fitting og a festival jam say at the Fillmore with the Allmans or the Dead. Quite different with a particularly cool bass solo from Mark Harris. Ghosts Of Mississippi has a light country rock flavor with Drout and Albert Castiglia sharing acoustic and slide guitar roles. Wrapping the release is The Day The Old Man Died, a bluesy rocker with swagger. Castiglia is back on slide Cam Robb on drums. Drout paints a good story and this track is a solid choice for it's completion.

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