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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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Showing posts with label Blue Lunch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Blue Lunch. Show all posts

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Rip Cat Records artists: Blue Lunch - Above The Fold - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Above The Fold, from Blue Lunch and it's lush! Opening with Ain't Trying To Kill Nobody, a cool groove with cool guitar work from Bob Frank and hot sax work from Chris Burge. With a cool story on vocals Frank makes for a cool track. On more laid back jazz track,  One Fine Day, Burge is joined by Bob Michael on trombone and Mike Rubin on trumpet for some real nice solo work. Pete London lays down cool harp work and Mike Sands on piano with Ramond DeForest on bass and Scott Flowers on drums make this a tight instrumental. Very nice! On boogie track The Long Game, London gets the chance to really blow out his harp and Frank takes a nice stretch on the fretboard. On swing track, Everybody's On The Phone, these guys really set a super groove with great harp work and solid vocals. Sands steps up with a cool piano solo coaxed along by the horn section. Excellent! On bluesy ballad, Woman I Bleed, the band pulls a nice contrast between a slow tear jerker and a hot swing. Frank sets the pace with his fast fingered guitar riffs. Very nice! No Time Like The Present opens with a strong big band sound featuring Burge, Michael and Rubin. Burge takes the lead and flies high on a super sax solo. Michael steps up right behind with smokin slide bone. Frank is tight on his heels with a cool jump solo of his own. Burge circles back as does Michael clearing room for hot riffs from Flowers and DeForest. Rubin rips a nice one of his own both open and muted. Hot! On spiritual/R&B styled track Where Do You Think It's Going, the band really hits it's stride with crisp vocals and warm organ work backing. London steps up on harp and with emphasis on bass and drums the band is almost in Ike and Tina land. Lake Erie Highball is another great jump track with hot horns. Michael is first up with his bone flaring. Burge slips in a never misses a step. With his warm sax tone and fluid runs, he's on fire. Excellent! Venita opens with beautiful chord work from Frank. A slow T-Bone Walker like track, this track oozes the blues. The horns are behind the vocals and Frank is at the ready with his blue jazz chords. Frank leads the way on this track instrumentally and plays those double stopped guitar riffs squeezing out the blues. Clocking in at over 6 minutes, this track seems to end too shortly. Very nice! With an almost calypso march, Love No More is short and sweet with tight horns and vocals. All I Needed is a classic pop ballad with standard jazz structure. An open invitation to radio airplay, the horns are strong and a super sexy sax solo by Burge sets the track off. Tossin' & Turnin' & Burnin has a bit of a Jimmy Reed feel but of course with a solid horn base. Burge again pulls out some super sax riffs and Frank fans the guitar with a tasty riff of his own. Vocal duet gives the track a more complex feel. Kattin' Around With Moe gets London back up front with harp and a cool blues swinger. Franks is chasing the beat on rhythm guitar and he and London duel their way down the blues trail. Very cool. Wrapping the release is the traditional Good News acapella with all male vocals - almost barbershop style. London, Frank, DeForest blend nicely for an memorable conclusion to another stellar release from Blue Lunch.  

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Obviously not from this release but a good representation of the band's work:

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Rip Cat Records artist: Blue Lunch - The Blue Lunch Special - New Release Review

I just received the newest release (February 18, 2014), The Blue Lunch Special, from Blue Lunch. This is a compilation release but the debut on Rip Cat. A selection of hot tracks from previous releases spanning 15 years opens with Sideswiped, a cool rocker with hot horns from Keith McKelley (sax), Mike Rubin (trumpet), and Bob Michael (trombone), cool keys from Mike Sands and stinging guitar from Bob Frank. Cold Day Down Below has a real New Orleans style with luscious piano work from Sands. Nicely blended vocals from Pete London, Frank and bassist Raymond DeForest is tight over a Chuck Berry (Almost Grown) like delivery. Jump track Skin Bones and Hair really moves and a tight horn (sax by Frank Tischler) section compliments super vocals from Frank who also takes a really tasty guitar solo on this number. Cuttin Out is another jump style track with authentic backing vocals and vocal / guitar/ horn exchange. Tim Longfellow handles piano and Scott Flowers handles drums on this number. A very cool guitar solo caps this track. Very nice! The Fidget is a super instrumental number featuring London on harp. Horns blazing, and Mike Janowitz keeping things on top with drums this is a real toe tapper. IC Boogie is a cool piano rocker with nice horn work and a great bass line. One of my favorite tracks on the release it's too short! Jackie Brenston's Leo The Louse is a really cool jump track with great instrumentation. With flavors of Louis Jordan this track is way cool!  Kenny Leegrand plays a really hot solo on this track making it one of the choice tracks by fans for sure! Best I Can is more of a bluesy ballad featuring Frank on lead vocal and London on harp. Nice double stopped guitar work and clean articulation makes the solo on this track one of the must hears of the release. Deforest takes the lead vocal spot on Sixty Minute Man with his deep thundering voice. A simple track, it cool to hear Deforest step forward as he has a really cool voice. Robert Jr Lockwood's Little Boy Blue is a authentic delta style blues with a rag style twist. A simple laid back track it sets a nice opening for the next track to hit. Sonny Rollin's Tenor Madness is absolutely the hottest track on the release featuring a full out sax blowout featuring Keith McKelley, Christopher Burge and Tony Koussa. This track would make this release worth buying if it were the only track on it...and fortunately the rest is super as well. Excellent. Sands and Flowers do notable jobs on keys and drums which really add to the effects of this literal sax off! The Lonely One is a nice slow jazzy blues track featuring Frank on lead vocals and a sweet trumpet solo from Mike Rubin. Cleveland Ohio Blues is another snappy track with a cool back beat. T - Bone like guitar work from Frank and cool key work from Sands is nicely supported by Tischler on sax and Janowitz on drums. Monkey Hips & Rice has a vintage vocal harmony and Deforest's bottom is key. Sax Gorgon Beadle hits the note on sax on this track playing over the top! Ernie K Doe's Mother In Law is the wrapping track on the release. Everybody knows and loves this track and it's a perfect ending to a great release.

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