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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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Monday, August 2, 2021

Blind Pig Records artist: Altered Five Blues Band - Holler If You Hear Me - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release (September 3, 2021), Holler If You Hear Me, from Altered Five Blues Band, and it's a strong contemporary blues release. Opening with blues rocker and title track, Holler If You Hear Me, Jeff Taylor is authoratative at the mic, backed by Jeff Schroedl on guitar, Mark Solverson on bass, Raymond Tevich on keys and Alan Arber on drums plus some cool harmonica work by Jason Ricci. Great opener. Ricci and Schroedl really hit the road running on If You Go Away (She Might Come Back), and with a modern take on Chicago style blues, Taylor sets a grat pace. With a great blend of instrumentation and a tight drum rhythm by Arber, this track rocks. Slow blues, Holding on With One Hand, is one of my favorites on the release with excellent guitar lead, and powerful vocal from Taylor. The addition of Ricci on this release I think is a master stroke because everything that he plays on gains substantially from his feel. Another solid Chicago style track is Where's My Money in the vein of Muddy Waters. This is a nicelt paced track with strong lead vocal and a healthy dose of Ricci on lead harmonica. All Suit, No Soul is another of my favorites with clever lyrics, a Latin beat, warm keys by Tevich and with a lot of open floor for Schroedl on lead guitar. Very nice. R&B based, Leave Before I Let You Down, is a real nice showcase for Taylor's vocals and Schroedl shows his tasty chops. Solid. Wrapping the release is high energy blues, Big Shout Out, with Taylor, Ricci and Schroedl trading call and response. I really like Ricci's gritty sound contrasted against Schroedl's clean sting. This is a super closer for a very tasty release. 


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Friday, July 30, 2021

Polly O'Keary and the Rhythm Method - 50- New Release review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, 50, from Polly O'Keary and the Rhythm Method and it's quite good. Opening with Brand New Day a super blues rocker with a light Lating twist,Polly is up front on vocal and bass, backed by Dave Miller on guitar and Tommy Cook on drums. With a suspenceful bass line, strong gitar lead and plenty of cow bell, this track is a super opener. With a tango rhythm accentuated by Cook on snare, Can't Catch Me really catches the mood and Miller's "early Santana" like guitar phrasing really gives this track spark. Excellent! Blues ballad, Smiling is one of my favorites on the release with Miller at the mic. His guitar work, gilstening chords as a part of the rhythm part, and with searing lead, really sets the mood on this track giving it a real emotional grip. Very nice. Lumbering blues rocker, I'm Not Guilty, is really a nice showcase for O'Keary's vocals with it's rock solid bottom and dramatic styling. Miller lays in a cool guitar solo with shimmery effects and solid statements giving the track great balance. Wrapping the release is a power rocker, American Highways, with O'Keary on lead vocal and a strong guitar punch. Miller's lead work on this track takes a firm blues rock stand, flexing his guitar muscle with nicely formed statements. This is a solid closer for a real nice release. 


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