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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 Soulstack. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Soulstack. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Soulstack - Selftitled - New release review

Hot on the heels of Soulstacks second release "Five Finger Discount" Canadian band, Soulstack, is back with a hot new self titled release. Opening with the funk rocker, Just Don't Call It The Blues, lead vocalist/guitarist, Jon Knight and key man Mark Wessenger get into slinky world joined by the driving bottom of Darryl "Harpo" Peterson on bass, Tom Bono on drums and Chris Latta on guitar. This is a hot track and is bound to make you groove! Can't Take It With You has a bit of a pop ballad feel with a catchy melody. Knights vocals are smooth and well delivered and Wessenger's piano nicely presented. Little Fire Alive is a real nice R&B style track actually reminding me quite a bit of Ben E King. Warm vocal blending and a hot guitar riff bring this track home over the crisp drum work of Bona. Rocker, Lot Of Good Men, has a driving beat and stinging guitar work over solid organ work and tight drumming making this a prime radio track. Poison Headache has a jazzy Latin beat and a high energy rhythm guitar part. With compounding of keys and drums over the bass line, this track has an infectious groove. Tip Of My Tongue is a soulful track with a nice bounce in the rhythm. Compositionally, I find this to be the most powerful track on the release with a very solid melody, super vocal harmonies and balanced instrumental backing. Melodic guitar soloing near the end of the track help to punctuate it's overall power as a stand alone composition. No Man's Land has an interesting time signature and is a bit more of an open jam. A bit of a departure from most of the rest of the release, I like it! Love Thing is another track with a bit of funk in it's step and it moves along quite well. With a balance between soul, rock and funk this track has a nice mix of guitar, organ and drums under the vocals creating a cool party feel. Real Bad Feeling has a bit of a Jackson Browne feel with an Arena rock style. A solid melody and stinging guitar work carry the weight on this one. Wrapping the release is Time Don't Wait, a soulful ballad with a really nice melodic guitar solo and powerful keys and drums driving the way. An excellent conclusion to a solid release.


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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, December 12, 2013

Stacks of Soul on New Release Five Finger Discount From Soulstack

Stacks of Soul on New Release 'Five Finger Discount' From Soulstack 

 
Five Finger Discount is the sophomore release from Southern Ontario roots and blues band Soulstack. Produced by singer / guitarist Jonathan Knight, the album tracks the organic evolution of the band as it continues to grow in musical breadth and depth, picking up where their highly acclaimed first album, Big Red, left off. The ever creative, prolific  and often competitive songwriting team of Jon Knight and Mark Wessenger once again bring beautiful melodies and poignant lyrics to the table, that have been expertly captured on Five Finger Discount. The band’s return to Canterbury Music Company studio with famed engineer Jeremy Darby has once again proven to be a soulful, sonic success.
 
With the addition of guitarist Chris Latta on tremolo-soaked baritone and standard guitars, and the huge bass chair being shared by Harpo Peterson and Josh Knight, the album’s sound is full and deep with layers of pure heart and soul.  With his heavy and thick grooves, award-winning drummer Tom Bona shines throughout and provides the band with an inspired, rock-solid foundation. From rockers like "Not the Only One", "Fold Up Your Heart", and the impossibly funky "Hangin’ in the Kitchen" to the heart wrenching balladry of "Stay" and "Born to Make Me Cry", the album presents a wide range of musical emotion.
 
The greasy and gritty approach to that vintage sound of Big Red is carried on and kicked up a few notches on Five Finger Discount. The band wears its influences proudly upon its collective sleeve and will steal the hearts, and ears of fans of the great southern bands of yesteryear. Just ask the thousands of people who witnessed blistering performances by Soulstack this past summer at some of Canada’s biggest music festivals - including Montreal Jazz, Mont Tremblant, Kitchener Blues, and Toronto Waterfront Blues Festival. Recently, Soulstack was nominated for Electric Act of the Year, and Drummer of the Year for Tom Bona at the upcoming Maple Blues Awards. 
 
Soulstack faithfully walks the path laid out by their heavy stack of influences; the time-honoured traditions of roots, blues, soul and rock and roll.
 

 
QUOTES
“…the most righteous sounding this side of Sunday”. - Duane Verh, Roots Music Report
 
"I could sum up Five Finger Discount in just two words; great groove.  From rockers like Not The Only One to a heart breaking ballad like Born To Make Me Cry the record displays a wide range of emotion.  No matter how you feel at any given time, chances are pretty good that there’s a song amongst these 12 that will speak directly to you". - John “The Rock Doctor” Kereiff

"As expected there is a lot of ’60s style soul and R and B music featuring  excellent vocal harmonies and a whole lot of soul right from the first track". - L.A. Beat
 
“Their invigorating mixture of whiskey-inflamed vocals, classic-sounding organ work and some super tasty guitar licks all add up to a kind of rootsy realism that is mostly non-existent these days”. - Jeff Monk, Uptown Magazine
 
Media ToolsStream ‘Not The Only One here
Watch/ Share ‘Long Way Down’ here

 
 
 
 

Monday, November 4, 2013

Soulstack - Five Finger Discount - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Five Finger Discount, from Soulstack and it's diversely interesting. Opening with Long Way Down, Soulstack reestablishes their footing firmly in Dead like jam style blues. I quick paced track with warm vocals and solid drumming from Tom Bona. Not The Only One is a cool track with the rhythm and pace of early Ry Cooder music. A little Louisiana funky and really sweet slide work from Jonathan Knight along with super vocal harmonies makes this a definite best track candidate. Want You To Stay really has a lot of the characteristics of some of the best of Garcia and Weir. Vocal styling, contagious rhythm, warm keys from Mark Wessenger make this a super track. Fold Up Your Heart has a lot of the earthiness of the Band and movement of Little Feat. Another winner. Warm Bed To Sleep On remains consistent with the balance of the release but with the addition of a bit more funk and smoky gospel like backing vocals and slick slide work. This is another of my favorite tracks of the release. Friend is the first true ballad of the release with a simple melody and nice hook. Bonnie Raitt like slide work on the track followed by open blues guitar riffs gives the track a little punch. Hangin' In The Kitchen is a cool jam, loosely funky with great rhythmic drumming from Bona and Loiusiana style vocal work complimented by cool keys and a hot guitar solo. Excellent! Have Mercy remains in the jam vein but with a real interesting blues undertone. A Latin rhythms, Spanish guitar styling, Cuban like piano riffs and solid vocals make this another of the best tracks. All A Man Can Do has all of the features of a cool radio track but with a lot more interest. Cool slide riffs and light funky rhythm makes this a solid entry. Born To Make Me Cry is a solid vocal ballad having the seriousness of a Bob Dylan track. Rich vocal blending and strong key work from Wessenger make this a very seductive track. Nicely executed lead guitar melody also adds to the richness of the track. Living Room is the rockiest track on the release featuring solid rhythm and solid key work from Wessenger. Wrapping the release is a live version of This May Be My Last Time with heavy gospel overtones. This is a very strong release with solid vocals and instrumentation.

 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, April 26, 2012

Soulstack's Debut CD Big Red Garnering Great Reviews and Airplay Across North America

In a few short weeks since its release, the debut album Big Red from Ontario's Soulstack has been getting phenomenal reviews and climbing the radio airplay charts.

Here is what reviewers have to say about Big Red:

"Musically this album is great; every member of the band plays their part competently sounding like a well seasoned band. It’s effortless, absorbing and extremely well executed blues with a number of influential music styles, which makes the album flow magnificently with each song as good as the last. Big Red is the most soulful album of the year so far and a must for everyone to have on their summer playlist." The Review: 9/10
- Blues Rock Review
bluesrockreview.com
"Soulstack has simply blown me away with their release of "Big Red" and it is an album I can't help but really highly recommend you all give it a listen. You will, I am sure be very impressed, with this great new and very exciting group on the Canadian Music Scene. 5***** for "Big Red"
- John Vermilyea, Blues Underground Network
bluesundergroundnetwork.com
"Soulstack’s new CD is one you should get as soon as possible. It may turn out to be your favourite album of the year."
- Velvet Rope Magazine
velvetropemagazine.com
"Vocal harmonies and instrumentation is really integrating throughout this entire recording. I believe that it will find a strong audience not only with vocal oriented and radio audiences but also with listeners with more instrumental tastes. Great job!"
- Bman's Blues Report
bmansbluesreport.com


"The band plows down the competition by the sheer weight of its musical performances here. Their invigorating mixture of whiskey-inflamed vocals, classic-sounding organ work and some super tasty guitar licks all add up to a kind of rootsy realism that is mostly non-existent these days."
- Uptown Magazine
uptownmag.com

Big Red is available on iTunes


There is an intensity and urgency in the vocal style of Jon Knight, guitar player, songwriter and front man of Soulstack. While mixing penetrating lyrics and accomplished fretwork, Soulstack’s debut recording Big Red is a refreshing blend of gritty swamp blues, danceable soul, and good old fashioned roots. Big Red could be the favorite musical companion on a road trip from the belly of the Delta, and northward up through Detroit.

Based in Ontario, Soulstack was formed from the ashes of the popular Toronto blues band Wickens-Knight and features multiple award-winning members Jonathan Knight (vocals/guitar) and Tom Bona (vocals/drums) with the addition of Mark Wessenger (vocals/keys) and Josh Knight (vocals/bass).

Recorded over two days, in the dead of winter 2011 at Canterbury Music Company in Toronto with Jeremy Darby (Van Morrison, Smokey Robinson, and Keith Richards); Big Red is rich with the sounds of vintage Wurlitzer, Hammond organ and piano along with swampy tremolo guitar.Featuring 11 original tracks and a brilliantly arranged version of the traditional gospel song ‘In My Time Of Dying’. Keyboard player Wessenger’s strong vocals are highlighted on two of the songs.

This long awaited debut recording from one of Ontario’s best kept musical secrets is certain to become a cherished addition to the collection of roots, blues and soul music fans across the continent.





Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Soulstack Releases Long Awaited Debut CD Big Red

Soulstack Releases Long Awaited Debut CD
Big Red


There is an intensity and urgency in the vocal style of Jon Knight, guitar player, songwriter and front man of Soulstack. While mixing penetrating lyrics and accomplished fretwork, Soulstack’s debut recording Big Red is a refreshing blend of gritty swamp blues, danceable soul, and good old fashioned roots. Big Red could be the favorite musical companion on a road trip from the belly of the Delta, and northward up through Detroit.

Based in Ontario, Soulstack was formed from the ashes of the popular Toronto blues band Wickens-Knight and features multiple award-winning members Jonathan Knight (vocals/guitar) and Tom Bona (vocals/drums) with the addition of Mark Wessenger (vocals/keys) and Josh Knight (vocals/bass).

Recorded over two days, in the dead of winter 2011 at Canterbury Music Company in Toronto with Jeremy Darby (Van Morrison, Smokey Robinson, and Keith Richards); Big Red is rich with the sounds of vintage Wurlitzer, Hammond organ and piano along with swampy tremolo guitar.Featuring 11 original tracks and a brilliantly arranged version of the traditional gospel song ‘In My Time Of Dying’. Keyboard player Wessenger’s strong vocals are highlighted on two of the songs.

This long awaited debut recording from one of Ontario’s best kept musical secrets is certain to become a cherished addition to the collection of roots, blues and soul music fans across the continent.



Track Listing
1. Intro
2. Stone Cold Man
3. In My Time Of Dying
4. Desperate Times
5. Since You Came Around

6. Skinny Girl
7. In Your Mind
8. Just a Natural Thing

9. River Of Love
10. Holy Roller
11. Your Only Man
12. Let me Be Your Fool

13. Miss Me

If you like what I’m doing, Like ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorites band! ”LIKE”