They’ve been away for far too long. Renowned ‘till the mid-90’s as one of Britain’s best blues bands, their decision to stop gigging came as a severe blow to many of us blues lovers in the south. But now – with a slightly changed line-up – they are back with a vengeance. Harry Skinner (g,v), Dave Saunders (b), Ray Drury (keys) and Biff Smith (drums & perc) are in super form. Just listen to the opening axe work and the in-the-groove vocal of “Some People Say”. Complete with a vocal chorus and some super bass work by Dave Saunders, this is the blues as they should be done. So too “Money Lender” which surely will be covered before long.
But don’t run away with the idea that the the rest isn’t.
The addition of key musicians like Ben Waters (on two tracks), Andy Fairweather-Low on guitar on “The Wrong Way Home” and harp ace, Paul Lamb on “Tell Me Why”, make the whole thing an audio delight. Paul Beavis adds some meat to the rhythm section (on drums) on a number of tracks – check out “Sunshine Girl” which has a magical bossanova/reggae tinge to it. I wish there was more space here for praise, but this will have to do. This will, I predict, get a lot of air play (certainly by me) and may well be an award winner in next year’s British Blues Awards.
Ian McKenzie Blues In The South