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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 MacKenzie Blues Band. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MacKenzie Blues Band. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Mackenzie Blues Band - Slam! Bam! - New Release Review

I just received the most recent release, Slam! Bam! from the Mackenzie Blues Band and it's quite different. Opening with Prelude, an a capella number with warm vocals, it's a sure fire great start. Down With Love is a rocker with blues overtones. Lead singer Tara Mackenzie brings to mind a number of female lead vocalists but likely mostly Grace Slick or Ann Wilson. Lead guitarist Trevor Mackenzie shows a SRV flair. Joined by Mike Weir on drums and Joel Dawson the band is tight. On Sweet Stuff, Trevor is light up the fretboard again joined by Chris Murphy on sax, Rob Mclean on keys and Rod Ramsay on harp. Move On has an odd (for rock) 3/4 time signature and basic a more euro classical vocal track. Bone Cage again returns to a a capella style joined by Drew Mcivor, James Keelaghan, Coco Love Alcorn and Rob Elder on vocals. Primarily vocal and drums (with rhythm along the lines of When the Levee Breaks) the track is tight and definitely highlights Tara's vocal style. Burned When You Play With Fire had a cooler rock beat and along with the supre vocals of Tara, I feel that Weir carries the track with simple straight forward drums. Trevor unleashes a nice shot of guitar flames with the overall timbre of the track being 70's rock. On The Other Side has a slinky, Latin style club feel. Again it's the percussion of Weir and key work that sets the track. A particularly nice guitar solo on this track sets it apart. Ballad, Ain't Tryin To Hide, a really simple bluesy track is one that should go straight to the radio. Tara's vocals are simple and clear. I Feel A Storm Coming steps out from the rest with pseudo psychedelic guitar work of James Gurley. It's slow bluesy nature, Tara's controlled vocals and the loose interpretive guitar work make this a definite best track for me. Weighing in at 8 minutes plus, this track is definitely out of the ordinary...and that's why I like it! Up! Up! Up! has an almost San Francisco sound with it's simple construction and unadulterated vocals backed by simple guitar, drum and tambourine. Higher Road gets a funky groove going between Weir, Dawson and Mcivor. Warm vocals on this track and certain changes give it a little taste of Steeley Dan. Cool track and another that could be a radio darling. Wrapping the release is Spiritual Power, a soul flavored ballad. Tara does a nice job on vocals and Trevor adds some real tasty riffs along the melody making for a nice conclusion to this unique release.

  If you support live Blues acts, up and coming Blues talents and want to learn more about Blues news and Fathers of the Blues, Like ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorites band! ”LIKE”


Thursday, June 26, 2014

Slam! Bam! - New Album From The MacKenzie Blues Band

July 8, 2014

Watch video for "Up! Up! Up!" here
Mixing equal parts soul, blues, and talent, with a dash of retro style, Ontario’s The MacKenzie Blues Band has quickly proven to be a force to be reckoned with on festival stages, clubs and bar rooms. Their debut CD release, Back Road Revelation, garnered considerable airplay and positive reviews across Canada, USA and Europe. The MacKenzie Blues Band has twice made the semi-final rounds at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN and in early 2014 they won the Maple Blues Award for New Artist of the Year. The MacKenzie Blues Band has gained the attention of blues music professionals, critics and fans alike, and the release of their new CD Slam! Bam! will continue to elevate their profile as one of the new bands on the international blues scene.

The MacKenzie Blues Band’s sophomore release Slam! Bam! features straight up rockers such as “Burned When You Play With Fire” and “Ain’t Tryin’ to Hide”, the spiritual “Higher Road”,  and the dark, melodic “Bone Cage”. Tributes to love, lust and the confusion that binds the two are featured in “Down With Love”, “Storm Comin'” and “Move On”. The album closes with a strait up gospel track “Spiritual Power” a tribute to a close friend’s struggle with cancer. Slam! Bam! shows a slightly darker side of the band and lyrically explores topics including , substance abuse, suicide, and  healing from eating disorders. “Every lyric on this album can be attached to someone close to my life and our shared experiences. I had to crawl down the well of my own bravery to uncover authentic feelings to share with the folks listening to our music”, says Tara MacKenzie. “We couldn't bear the thought of just churning out a record that didn't dig deep. Our band really heard what I was wanting to say and then threw a match to the powder keg and set the melodies on fire.”
A classically trained vocalist, Tara MacKenzie has been compared to Ann Wilson, Katie Webster and Janiva Magness. Her powerful 3.5 octave vocal range is paired perfectly with her unapologetic, yet sultry stage presence. Guitarist Trevor MacKenzie has been called "One of the most dangerous guitar players in Canada” (Timmins Press). His versatile playing easily shifts gears from style to style, while maintaining his fretting hand firmly rooted in the blues genre. The rhythm section is the glue that binds The MacKenzie Blues Band together, with pulsing grooves from bassist Joel Dawson and drummer Mike Weir.

The MacKenzie Blues Band’s live performances encourage the audience to let loose, have fun and enjoy wild electric rockin' blues, or gritty rootsy unplugged acoustic shows. “Awesome vocals, incredible guitar playing, solid rhythm section and inspired songwriting -The MacKenzie Blues Band successfully touches all the bases…. a band that grabs you out of your seat and wraps itself around you!
(Rick Clark, Lighthouse Blues Festival). 
In-demand at venues and festivals across the province and beyond, The MacKenzie Blues Band takes the audience to a place where honesty, positivity and joy are on the menu, and to share in a common love for blues music.  


 /tmackbluesband     @tmackbluesband 

Track List
1. Prelude
2. Down With Love 
3. Sweet Stuff 
4.  Move On 
5.  Bone Cage 
6.  Burned When You Play With Fire 
7.  On The Other Side 
8.  Ain’t Tryin To Hide 
9.  I Feel A Storm Coming 
10. Up! Up! Up! 
11. Higher Road 
12. Spiritual Power