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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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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

33 Records artist: Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion - I'll Be Yours Tonight LIVE - New Release review

I just received the newest release, I'll Be Yours Tonight LIVE, from Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion and it's quite good! Opening with a rocker, Your Sun Shines Rain, Schwarz reminds me a lot of early Yeah Yeah Yeahs but done in San Francisco in 1968. Interesting. Fine & Mellow is a perfect title for this track. Schwarz really uses nice phrasing vocally and I particularly like the guitar work of Rob Koral. Pete Whittaker on Hammond and Paul Robinson round this band out nicely, Whittaker even taking a really nice expressive solo of his own. Very cool! High energy rocker (think My Generation), Let Me Sing The Blues with a light country twist gets the crowd moving. Si Genaro joins on harp and Andy Urquhart on trumpet adding even more dimensionality. Koral is not afraid to step out at all and his work on this track is cool and blistering. Smile has a really distinctive San Francisco sound. Vocal tension, instrumentation and backing vocals. Angel Of Mercy for some reason puts me in mind of Annie Haslam, lead singer of Renaissance. The song has a cool awkwardness and sophisticated composition, carried mostly on the backs of Whittaker and Schwarz. Liberated Woman is almost straight out rock with a dose of blues. With it's simple rhythm, quick pace and country style riffs it gets the crowd breathing hard. We'll Find A Way is an emotional ballad. Whittaker brings the heat on Hammond to allow Schwarz to deliver the word. Koral steps up with a really nice guitar solo on this one as well showing just how much can be said with only a few notes. R&B kicker, Say It Isn't So, has a bit of that old style Janis feel (Move Over) with it's constant drive. Whittaker gives the Hammond an aggressive ride and Urquhart punctuates the sound. I Believe In You is one of my favorites on the release with a modern blues theme. Koral really rips a nice solo on this track and his tone is spot on for my taste. Very nice! I'll Do Anything is instrumentally so 60's UK it's amazing. The vocals by Schwarz have a Grace Slick freedom that really works with this well. I like the simple complexity of Beatitudes, a slower blues ballad with a jazz dimensionality. Schwarz vocals are strong and Whittaker lays down some really nice keystrokes on this track. I have listened to this release a number of times and I continue to be surprised by the chord changes and I like it better each time. Koral again steps up with clean and interesting guitar riffs making this one of my favorites. Wrapping the release is the freewheeling Take Me Back. With it's simple, driving rhythm (think Radar Love)and eccentric soloing from Koral capped off by funky Hammond work by Whittaker this track is a good closer for this live endeavor.
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1 comment:

  1. What a great review of my favourite band. The reference to Janice's Move Over is uncanny. Thank you Bman's Blues x