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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 4, 2014

Stony Plain artist: Monkey Junk - Tiger In Your Tank - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Tiger In Your Tank, from Monkey Junk and it's terrific! This is a reissue of an earlier issued release with two added tracks, but I missed it first time around and am glad to have the opportunity to review it this time around! Opening with I Wanna Put A Tiger In Your Tank, a Willie Dixon penned track, MJ lays down a rockin' blues track with cool droning guitar riffs. Lead vocalist Steve Marriner has a solid voice for this music and echoes himself on harp. Matt Sobb keeps the bottom tight on drums. Small Time Evil has an easy southern rock feel Marriner trades harp leads with Tony D on slide guitar. Cool. On Magic Sam's Give Me Time, Marriner leads the band on a pure R&B style track with perfectly balanced vocals and organ. On Otis Rush's, If You Were Mine, a retro blues/rock feel permeates the room and Marriner beefs up the track with cool harp riffs. Tony D really kicks up the game with some rolling rock riffs making this a particularly bluesy track. When Push Comes To Shove smells like James Brown is leading the rhythm section and Marriner knows how to work it. Taking a few real nice key solos on this track, Marriner sets the pace for Tony D to come in with a few hot riffs of his own. Beefy is a particularly cool instrumental track with a funky bottom and great slide work from Tony D. Marriner gets on the harp and takes it for a nice ride prior to turning it back over to Tony. Very cool! One of the most conventional blues tracks on the release, Pay The Cost, takes it nice and easy with perfectly structured guitar lead under Marriner's super vocals. This track shows the roots of MJ's music, broken down into it's basic components with super harp work from Marriner and contained work from Tony and Sobb. Classic boogie track, Boogie Man, is one of the coolest tracks on the release with with a stiff strut. With drone guitar work from Marriner and slide work from Tony D, this is my favorite track on the release. Leave The Rest To You gets into a bright, contemporary funk feel with a taste of Little Feat gumbo flavor. Again, it's Tony D's slide work that really hits me on this track. It's clean, concise and interesting. Blues For Anna has a real strong delta blues flavor with a modern twist. I really like this track with it's traditional style blues guitar riffs and unadorned vocals by Tony D. Again, Tony D is out there with his slide stirring things up and it is hard to imagine anyone who likes slide guitar not liking this release. Marriner slams the track with a hot harp riff as well nicely complimenting his authentic vocals. Gutsy has a rolling R&B/jazz feel, not unlike some of James Browns stuff with lead organ. This is really a cool track with nice guitar punctuation just laying back and riding the organ. Tony D breaks clean with a real tasty guitar solo and Marriner takes the backseat on organ as he does. Excellent track! Lucky One is a bit more of a rocker and Tony D really lights up the guitar briefly over what is mostly a vocal radio style track. Wrapping the release is Pueblo with cool drum rhythms but with a feel of traditional spaghetti western blues music. A real opportunity for Marriner to play an extended harp solo, this is a great conclusion to a super release.

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