CD submissions accepted! Guest writers always welcome!!

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, June 21, 2022

Many Hats Records artist: Michael Rubin - I'll Worry If I Wanna - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, I'll Worry If I Wanna, from Michael Rubin and I really like it. Opening with Little Rabbit, a cool shuffle. With an intro that parrots the Bunny Hop, Michael Rubin on lead vocal and harmonica sets a cool stage. Rubin has a great combination with his full harmonica voice and his own voice adds to the texture. Mike Keller on slide really does a great job backed by Michael Archer on bass, Mark Hays on drums and Emily Gimble on keys. Great opener. Go Milk Your Own Cow is a clever track with a zydeco feel. Rubin's vocal and harmonica is front and center but super adds by Dr. Sick on fiddle and Keller on guitar really make this track shine. With a rumba beat, Can We Break Up Again, is a really cool track with cool lyrical twists. Hays' drums pave the way but it's Rubin's wacky vocals and harmonica riffs that set this track out. Very cool. Blues jam and title track, I'll Worry If I Wanna really has a driving shuffle beat, lead by Keller on guitar, a great walking bass line by Archer and leading into a great harmonica blast by Rubin. Excellent! Slow blues, Chain Letter Blues has a much more serious approach, underpinned by Gimble on keys and Hays on drums. Rubin on lead vocal delivers the word and Keller takes a real nice guitar solo, leading into a nicely phrased solo by Rubin as well. Very nice. Wrapping the release is shuffle, Fourth Coast, which gives Rubin one last chance to blow the harmonica out. Rubin has a real nice hand at harmonica with fat tone, great harmonicas and interesting phrasing (and a sense of humor). Loved this release. Check it out! 


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Monday, June 20, 2022

Gritbiscuit Records artist: Christopher Lockett - At The Station - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, At The Station, from Christopher Lockett and it's a cool blend of country, folk, rock and blues. Opening with The Reckoning, Christopher Lockett hits square on with military like precision. His vocals are strong and rugged and his electric guitar playing is crisp and bluesy. Joined by Fernando Perdomo on bass and drums and Kitten Kuroi on backing vocals this is a solid opener. Rocker, Bring Your Love On Home To Me is a solid radio style alt rock track. It really puts me in mind of Frank Black with a strong melody, country sensitivity, with Perdomo on keys and drums and understated guitar lead. Very nice. Kicking the country up another notch Wet A Line with Scarlet Rivera on violin and the addition of Kuroi on vocal harmony is a cool, country 2 stepper. Blues For Deford Bailey is a super track with Lockett on harmonica commemorating Bailey, the Grand Old Opry standout harmonica player. With solid train style harmonica playing and loose drumming by Perdomo this track fits perfectly. Country rocker, E Pluribus Unum is as straight forward as it gets with a great rhythm and melody and some flashy country style riffs. Closing with a Bo Diddley beat, Sweat Work features Lockett on vocal and harmonica,  Korey Simone on slide dobro and Perdomo on bass and drums. With a taste of Stones, solid closer for a really interesting release. 


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Friday, June 17, 2022

Gearbox Records artist: Binker Golding - Dream Like A Dogwood Wild Boy - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release (June 17, 2022), Dream Like A Dogwood Wild Boy, from Binker Golding and it's a blend of rural blues and city jazz. Opening with (Take Me To The) Wide Open Lows with it's delta blues national steel guitar sounds by Billy Adamson, moving quickly to contemporary jazz with Sarah Tandy on piano, Sam Jones on drums, Daniel Casimir on bass and featuring Binker Golding on tenor sax. This track has many faces after switching from the purity of the delta to the slickest of the city soft jazz and finally to some really nice improvisational lines by Golding and Tandy. Love Me Like A Woman is a real interesting fusion with blues bones. Although Golding has the framing of contemporary riffs, his sensitivity runs to blues phrasing and terrific sax runs. Adamson steps up with some gritty blues phrasing of his own on guitar and with aggressive drum work by Jones, this is my favorite track on the release.  Some of the titles on this release have quite a bit of thought...take " Howling and drinking in god's own country". With Adamson on slide dobro and snappy New Orleans drumming by Jones this track really takes off. Golding has a real feel for improvisation. I don't always dig his central theme phrasing, but when he breaks away...watch out. Tandy pushes driving phrases on piano making this yet another really fine track. Wrapping the release is a more quiet and deliberate, All out of fairy tales with solid sax and piano melody lines. Cool steel guitar accompaniment work by Adamson and always exceptional drumming by Jones spices the work nicely. Solid closer to a curiously cool release.  


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Thursday, June 16, 2022

Alice Austin - Goodnight Euphoria - New Release Review

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 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Goodnight Euphoria, from Alice Austin and it's quite good. Austin, who fronts Black Sabbitch and has Zola Turn and The Lavas in her history brings a lot of talent to this new release. Opening with No Such Thing, a really solid track with a memorable melody, and classic alt rock rhythm this track gets my attention immediately. Featuring Austin on vocals and a good number of the instruments, and paired with David Drouin on vocal, guitar and bass this is a strong opener featuring catchy guitar riffs, power chords and nicely blended vocal harmonies. On title track, Goodnight Euphoria, Austin blends a driving acoustic guitar rhythm and drums with 60-70's style vocal exploration. Multilayered instrumentation reminds me quite a bit of Beatles sensitivity but adding in a stronger rock rhythm and sympathetic slide guitar. Very nice. Loveless Waste is another really cool track with it's Pixiesque driving rock sound and really nicely blended vocal harmonies. What's not to like about a surf track and we got one here in The Neighborhood. With reverb soaked guitar by Drouin who also adds considerably on vocal, Austin's tracks shows clever lyrics and an ever open door of musical influences. With Seth Campbell on mellotron as well and a cool, structured surf guitar solo by Drouin, this track rocks. Never Occurred To Me hits right down the middle with a George Harrison feel. Austin and Drouin's voices are so well matched and the selection of backing orchestration is perfect. Wrapping the release is quiet ballad, Saving My Tears with Austin's gripping lyrics and voice. Balanced with Campbell on keys, this is a super closer for a very cool release. 



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Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Stony Plain Records artist: Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters - Mercy Me - New Release Review


 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Mercy Me, from Ronnie Earl & the Broadcasters and it's strong. Opening with Muddy Waters' classic shuffle, Blow Wind Blow in Earl style and it's great. With Diane Blue handling the lead vocals nicely, Dave Limina on B3, Paul Kochanski on bass and Forrest Padgett on drums and Peter Ward sharing the guitar work with Earl, this is a solid opener. Slow blues, Blues For Duke Robillard, is prime Earl. I know that this may sound repetitive, but although Earl is an excellent player across the spectrum, his flow and chops on slow blues instrumentals are really tops in todays market. His feel, phrasing and tone is excellent and this track is an excellent example. With a slight uptick, Anthony Geraci's A Prayer For Tomorrow, is another great jam showing Earl not only with strong lead phrasing but gripping trem bends and lush chords under the beautiful key work of Geraci. Very nice. Another great shuffle, Dave's Groove, has just the right feel with Earl playing just behind the beat adding nice tension. Mario Perrett lets it fly on tenor sax giving the track a fat horn push along with Limina's B3 work. Excellent! Percy Mayfield's Please Send Me Someone To Love features Blue again on lead vocal and powerful horn work by Perrett on tenor and Mark Earley on bari sax adding a real soulful feel. The warm B3 tone by Limina and Padgett's light drum rhythm lends an excellent slate for Earl's clean, complimentary guitar soloing. Clocking in at over 10 minutes, a terrific track. Wrapping the release is Higher and Higher, further reinforcing the R&B influences throughout the release. Blue gets a great groove going, backed by Tess Ferraiolo on backing vocals and with the warm, gospel feel of  Limina on B3 and piano, excellent sax work by Perrett and Earley really sets the stage for Earl's highlighted guitar accents. Very nice closer for a strong release. 


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Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Ermelinda Cuellar - What A Difference A Day Made - New Release Review


 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, What A Difference A Day Made, from Ermelinda Cuellar, and it's a strong mix of jazz standards and Latin flavored music. Opening with Man With A Horn, Texas born vocalist Ermelinda Cuellar sings with confidence over tight instrumentation by Gilbert Sedeno on piano, Greg Petito on guitar, Anthony Caceres on bass, and Marlon Simon on drums and percussion, Arribal Ambert on percussion and featuring really strong trombone work by Andre Hayward. Beautiful Latin ballad, Sabor A Mi is really nicely handled by Cuellar with particularly nice guitar work by Sedeno and clean piano soloing by Sedeno. Very nice. Mercer's Midnight Sun enjoys a light Latin percussion and Cuellar's vocals float on the music with excellent trombone work accent lines by Hayward and with an extended piano lead by Sedeno. Another Latin song, Historia De Un Amor,  (sung in Spanish) has such a nice presence. Cuellar's phrasing is sensitive, complimented nicely by Petito on acoustic guitar, Simon and Ambert on percussion and Sedeno on piano. Hayward really lays in another strong trombone solo, contrasting the quiet nature of the track and reinforcing Cuellar's powerful vocals. Very nice.  Wrapping the release is a Latin flavored Alone Together, with tight percussion, and strong piano efforts by Sedeno, balanced by excellent Trombone by Hayward and Cuellar's own percussive vocals  and fluid guitar lead by Petito. Excellent closer for a very strong release. 


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Monday, June 13, 2022

AKKU Quintet Manuel Pasquinelli - Live - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Live, from AKKU Quintet and it's an exciting compositional piece. Opening with Waves,  featuring Manuel Pasquinelli on drums and Moja Nydegger  on keys the track blooms as it progresses. With the addition of Markus Ischer on guitar, this track ebbs and flows from quiet to explosive. Quite a 28 plus minute ride. Polar has a different approach with the tight underwork of Pasquinelli on drum and more predominant contemporary piano by Nydegger and cool, guitar lead exploration by Ischer. Schneemann has a really interesting time signature with Pasquinelli doing both straight time and a strong accent swat on snare. Again, creative lead by Ischer on guitar holds you in constant anticipation and the bass work of Andi Schnellmann gives the track a pronounced abstract quality. I really like this track. Deep Sleep II is the closer and with it's Frippish jagged rhythm and guitar work the terrific tightness of the key work of Nydegger and the addition of Michael Gilsenan really makes this track an excellent closer. If you have an ear for progressive music... this is a terrific ride.


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Friday, June 10, 2022

DIVA Jazz artist: The Diva Jazz Orchestra - Diva Swings Broadway - New Release Review

 


I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, DIVA Swings Broadway, from the DIVA Jazz Orchestra and it's power horns to the max. Opening with Heart, there's no question that this band is loaded with brass lead by Liesi Whitaker, Jami Dauber, Rachel Therrien and Barbara Laronga on trumpet/flugelhorn and Jennifer Krupa, Sara Jacovino and Leslie Havens (bass) on trombone. Band leader, Sherrie Maricle on drums, Noriko Ueda on bass, Tomoko Ohno on piano hold down the bottom and Alexa Tarantino (also flute), Mercedes Beckman (also flute), Roxy Coss (also clarinet), Laura Dreyer (also clarinet) and Leigh Pilzer (bari, bass clarinet, flute and clarinet) on sax fill out the woodwinds sections. Coss on tenor sax, Dauber on trumpet and Krupa on trombone lay in nice solos making this opener memorable. Ueda is featured on bass solo on The Man I Love with a really nice intro and substantive soloing throughout over the piano counter of Ohno on piano and punchy horns filling out the accents. This is my favorite track on the release featuring this exceptional play.  Nicely balanced horns and woodwinds play the melody on Oh What A Beautiful Morning, over the supple improvisation by Ohno on piano. With a Latin rhythm held tight by Maricle, Therrien on flugelhorn and Dreyer on sax each contribute solid solos of their own making this another of my favorites on the release. Ohno, Laronga and Tarantino get the spotlight on Love Who You Love with a really nice flugelhorn solo by laronga, and extremely tasty soprano sax solo by Tarantino and Ohno's clearly fluid piano work. Very nice. Wrapping the release is Get Me To The Church On Time with a really cool stair stepping of instruments giving the sense of chiming. Maricle really has the drumset on point and Beckman and Tarantino again play alto solos that will lay you back in your chair. Excellent closer for a sneaky great release. 


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Thursday, June 9, 2022

Stacy Jones Band - World On Fire - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, World On Fire, by the Stacy Jones Band, and it's a solid blues rocker. Opening with blues rocker, Jefferson Way, Stacy Jones on lead vocal wails the blues both vocally and on harmonica. With Jeff Menteer on electric slide guitar, Tom Jones on bass and heavy drum work by Rick J Bowen. Juke is a cool shuffle featuring Stacy on harmonica and she does a real nice job holding up a nice Chicago vibe. Tom Jones leads on vocal on Willie Dixon's Insane Asylum, an easy coasting blues along the lines of St James Infirmary. His voice, contrasted with the wild, high intensity vocal of Stacy gives this track real teeth. Very nice. Derek Trucks' Midnight In Harlem is handled nicely with Stacy on vocal and  Menteer on slide. Very solid cover of a cool, contemporary blues track. Another cover track, Aretha's Think, maintains Aretha's arrangement and Jones does a real nice job,  on vocals and adding blues harmonica adds yet another dimension. Gene Laukkunen on sax and Mike Gunther on trumpet also adds nicely to the overall feel. Wrapping the release is acoustic track, With Music On My Side featuring nice harmonica and Menteer on acoustic guitar backing the best vocals on the release. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Vemicious Knid Music artist: The Andy Rothstein Band - Truth Against The World - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Truth Against The World, from The Andy Rothstein Band and it's quite good. Opening with Perfect Storm, a poppy lighter jazz track, Andy Rothstein leads the way on melody with his agile guitar phrasing, along with Tony Senatore on bass, Tom Cottone on drums, D Pappas on keys, Steve Jankowski on trumpet and trombone and Ken Gioffre on sax. An aggressive drum rhythm by Cottone and soaring keys by Pappas cap off this opener. Blues, is a really cool change up with jazzy underpinnings but square on blues guitar attack. Rothstein has nice blues chops on guitar and Cottone anchors the rhythm on solid rock. Gioffre takes a real nice tenor solo with solid support from Pappas. Cranking up the horns a bit with Jankowski on Trumpet, Mystic Mud has a fusion feel giving Rothstein a chance to let it all hang out. Jankowski slips in the mute and plays sweetly on trumpet in strong contrast to Rothstein's ripping blues rock riffs on guitar and tight underpinnings by Senatore and Cottone. Hell Mary is an interesting track built over a Jimi riff fused in a Robert Fripp kind of way. Vocal lead by Audrey Martells adds another dimension and of course Rothstein blends blues, rock and jazz riffs over the regimented bass/drum heaviness demanded of this kind of jam. Cool. Wrapping the release is title track, Truth Against The World, with power horns by Jankowski and sax by Gioffre. Lead melody on guitar by Rothstein develops into a real nice improv and further as the intensity grows. A cool diversion by Pappas on keys keeps up the fever but brings down the pitch over a funky drum beat and with Gioffre and Jankowski on horns this is a solid closer.  


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Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Challenge Records artist: Markus Burger - The Vienna Sessions - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, The Vienna Sessions, by Markus Burger and it's an interesting exploration in piano. Opening with Daybreak, German born, Markus Burger creates an calm interpretation of early morning emotions. A graduate of Folkwang University of the Arts in Essen, Germany, Burger exudes the confidence of a man with many years of composition. Along The Creek shows considerable patience and solitude as you may experience in a wooded area with a stream. O Great Love is a really nice, classically based composition with beautiful phrasing and pure execution. Renaissance Romance has a regal sound but I can actually (in my mind) hear a contemporary rhythm and overplay. Very curious indeed. Wrapping the release is Rejoicing,  a bright piano track with contemporary phrasing and a memorable melody. Burger is obviously very accomplished and well versed with influences from Bach to Jarrett. 


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Monday, June 6, 2022

David Lumsden - Rooted In The Blues - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Rooted In The Blues, by David Lumsden, and it's quite good. Opening with Chuck Berry style rocker, I Wouldn't Lay My Guitar Down,  David Lumsden on lead vocal and guitar sets the pace and Ian Buschmann's bari sax work sets a nice bar. Joined by Tim Bahm on piano, Gary Davis on bass and Jim Engel on drums, a cool opener. Ruthless Boogie has a great groove with Lumsden hitting the pace on guitar and solid bass lines by Davis and relentless organ work by Bahn. One of my favorite tracks on the release is Hooked On Somethin' with it's slow boogie beat. I love these old style blues rockers and featuring  Reggie Britton on lead vocal and with Lumsden paired with Davis on bass, this track smokes. Ode to Jimi AKA Slow Burn is a really cool instrumental really featuring Lumsden on Hendrix fused guitar riffs. This is a real solid track with cool clavinet work by Bahn. Wrapping the release is Everything Is Broken, a cool blues rocker featuring Kylan Davis on lead vocal. With it's rugged radio styling, this could be the radio track from the release. 


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Friday, June 3, 2022

Stony Plain Records artist: HOROJO Trio - Set The Record - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Set The Record, from HOROJO Trio and I really like it. Opening with rocker, Man of Steel, lead vocalist Jeff Rogers who also plays keys leads the way, with well known guitar slinger JW-Jones on guitar and Jaime Holmes doing a great job on drums really get it ramped up. R&B track, Set The Record Straight has a lightly funky rhythm and the real richness of Rogers vocals shine through. Jones, who lead the vocal charge on his own solo releases and Holmes do a terrific job blending backing vocals making this a tight vocal effort.  One of my favorite tracks on the release is Stay Crazy with it's soulful feel and terrific lead vocals. With it's radio melody and Jones tasty guitar riffs, this track is very nice. Another particularly strong track is The Night with has a terrific melody, strong lead vocal by Rogers who adds warm organ backing and includes a sweet guitar solo by Jones. Very nice. Contemporary blues rocker, Give and Take gives Jones a real chance to show his blues roots with excellent riffs highlighting the track. Holmes takes charge on "James Brown" like rhythm as Jones and Rogers trade vocal/guitar lead on Something You Should Know. This track really moves out and Jones slides right in with a crisp guitar solo that really capps the track and Holmes showboats a little himself adding real icing to this cake.  Real Deal begins as a high intensity rocker with HOROJO firing on high but slows to a really nice blues giving Jones a great opportunity to show his blues chops and that he does. Rogers is just what Jones needed to give him a wider audience with excellent pipes on this new release. 


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Thursday, June 2, 2022

Soul Sound Records artist: Markey Blue Ric Latina Project - Jumpin' The Broom - New Release Review

 


I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Jumpin' The Broom, from Markey Blue Ric Latina Project and it's a cool mix of pop, soul and blues rock. Opening with shuffle, Bad For Real, Ric Latina on guitar, Randy Coleman on bass and Dave Northrup set a solid pace. Lead singer Markey Blue takes the reins and carries the melody. With a cool, low key bottom, Latina lays in some nice riffs making this a solid opener. With a more active, New Orleans style rhythm by Northrup and Coleman, and cool slide by Latina, Little Betty is my favorite track on the release with nicely styled vocal lead by Markey. Funky, Be With Me has a real nice feel with the addition of Chris West on horns and Markey really hitting the slot. Latina gets a nice opportunity to lay down a fluid lead solo and that really adds nicely. Latin flavored, Lowdown Voodoo Woman has a subtle rhythm and flowing vocal lead by Markey but hits the groove nicely and Latina's guitar work is really clean and supple with just the right flavor to get it done. Wrapping the release is cool soul ballad, Where Are You, featuring Markey right up front with warm key work by Shannon Wickline. This track definitely has the radio sound and is likely to be the radio favorite from the release with it's memorable melody and clean, melodic guitar soloing by Latina. 


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Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Bible & Tire Recording Company artist: Johnny Ray Daniels - Whatever You Need - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Whatever You Need, from Johnny Ray Daniels, and it's solid blues, R&B, soul and gospel. Opening with title track, Whatever You Need, Johnny Ray Daniels' silky smooth voice leads the way. With potent backing vocals by Anthony "Amp" Daniels and Keamber Daniels, Johnny Ray on guitar, Will Sexton on guitar and piano, Matt Ross-Spang on guitar, Mark Edgar Stuart on bass, Will McCarley on drums and Rick Steff on Hammond, this is a great opener. With a driving strut, God Is Able, is up next and Johnny Ray has just the perfect feel to deliver the song. Often I feel it isn't just melodic strength but timing and feel that makes or breaks a track and Johnny Ray has it. Lord You've Been Good To Me has a grat call and response between Johnny Ray, Amp and Keamber, Their vocal blending is solid and the feel of the track is warm and inviting. One of my favorite tracks on the release is Church Get Ready with it's pure gospel sound. Johnny Ray soulful lead vocal is smooth and Steff's Hammond work saddles the backing vocals nicely. Wrapping the release is Thank You Lord, sung A capella really with a minimal organ backing. Johnny Ray really gets the pipes humming over the solid backing of Amp and Keamber making this a terrific closer. 


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Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Digital Victrola Records artist: Andy Ostwald Trio - Field Guide - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the debut release, Field Guide, by the Andy Ostwald Trio, and it's light and springy but with some tasty meat too. Opening with Sonar with it's bright melody, led by Ostwald on piano joined by Ravi Abcarian on bass and Bryan Bowman on drums. Abcarian and Bowman each get a chance to stretch on this solid opener. Nat Adderley's Sweet Emma is up next with it's soulful feel and great bluesy cadence. I particularly like Abcarian's bass solo on this number. Very nice. Forties pop, I Hear A Rhapsody has become a jazz standard and Ostwald has done a real nice job on interpretation on this one with an excellent bass solo by Abcarian and tight drum highlights by Bowman giving this track sparkle. Van Heusen's Like Someone in Love, is nicely presented with a 3/4 prime tempo driven by Ostwald, over crisp contrast by Bowman on brushes. Abcarian takes a real nice lead solo on bass, followed by Ostwald making this one of my favorite tracks on the release. Wrapping the release is Ibrahim's classic, The Wedding. With classic styling and flawless piano execution, Ostwald closes this strong first effort, solo style, with elegance.


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Friday, May 27, 2022

Josh Hyde - Parish Blues - New Release Review

 


I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Parish Blues, from Josh Hyde and it presents a cool interpretation of modern blues. Opening with Where To Start, Josh Hyde on vocal and guitar shows his natural writing abilities with a strong melody and cool blues guitar riffs. Joined by  Jamey Bell on drums, Jimmy Wallace on keys, Rockin Jake on harmonica, Shawn Stroope on bass and Derrek Phillips on percussion, this is a great opener. In a more traditional delta style, I Can't Leave The Night is very cool with a John Lee Hooker like approach to the blues. I really like this track. With a James Brown rhythm, Stuck In A Rut really shows ingenuity, blending that trademark sound with blues underpinnings. With keyboards, bass and drums under the vocal and tight guitar riffs, this is a very solid track. Wrapping the release is easy, radio track, So Sweet, with Hyde on lead vocal and guitar over light drums, bass and keys. This is a cool release with a taste of everything.




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Thursday, May 26, 2022

Hyperspace Records artist: Star People - Black Tie & Tales - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Black Tie & Tales, from Star People and it's an adventurous project. Opening with I, Starman, William Olland, Paul Gifford and Lorenza Ponce blend soft vocals over a predominantly keyboard backing by Scott Treibitz, creating a progressive kind of mix with solid violin contributions by Ponce, and with Randy Pratt on bass and Phil Weiss on drums. Pretty cool. Funky, "Queen of Space" has the melody and rhythm of a radio track with wide open guitar sound by Robert Dean and a jazzy piano solo by Treibitz. Electronic based. A Trillion Miles To Hollywood changes up the pace with electronic rhythms, synthesizers and vocals. Hot Blue Star rolls further into a rock genre with theatrical vocal presentation, and instrumentation. Hot guitar riffs by Dean and Jesse Berlin. A comprehensive theme running throughout this 2 cd set extends the aggressive soundtrack like nature of the release with solid  drum rhythms by TC Tolliver and spatial keys by Treibitz, and guitar soloing by Dean. Ponce really commands the floor with lead vocals on The Morning Star joined by a tight drum rhythm by Tolliver and some of the hottest guitar riffs on the release by Berlin. Wrapping the release is Exit, Stage Left, opening with a loose, Tom Waits style but quickly reengaging a more futuristic, spatial performance with echoed vocals and sci fi sounds over the funky bass work of Randy Pratt and Tolliver on drums. This release isn't for everyone but it is interesting and different. 



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