Archive for September, 2015

23
Sep
15

MADCHILD-SILVER TONGUE DEVIL-PERSONAL PAIN MEETS BIG SKILLS-CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

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It’s impossible not to like an album that is this tenacious, angry, inspired, and hopeful all at the same time.

But that’s what you get on Madchild’s latest cd Silver Tongue Devil.

Songs as good as Painful Skies, Jackel, Devils and Angels and Everyday featuring CeeKay Jones galvanize the listener.

To be sure some may find this rhyme fest explicit, disturbing. and controversial.

Yet the lyrics also reflect and inspire thousands with his true life story

The album’s hooks suit Madchild’s confidence in himself.

On this album Madchild continues to push ahead on his own re-invention.

This cd demands your attention!!

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist/songwriter/musician and podcast radio host

JOHN is on Twitter

https://twitter.com/emmsreviews

check out John’s and his Blues Rockin friends THE SHAFTMEN

http://www.theshaftmen.com

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/paycheque-blues/id365389443

 

 

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23
Sep
15

COLIN LINDEN-RICH IN LOVE-“EXCEPTIONAL ROOTS TAPESTRY” BY JOHN EMMS

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Rich In Love Colin Linden’s new album combines the songwriter, the player and the singer into gorgeous roots Americana

These are stories worthy of the first three Band albums and mid period Tom Waits.

Songs like Delia Come For Me, The Hurt, and the masterful title track featuring Charlie Musselwhite and then Amy Helm on the outro breathe in an ambience of blues, roots and gospel.

Elsewhere tracks like I Need Water, No More Cheap Wine and Luck of A Fool featuring Resse Wynans add some Nashville meets Memphis via Linden’s own organic guitar work .

Date With The Stars is easily one of Linden’s best songs period. If Elvis Presley was alive he would have probably covered it.

All this is held together by drummer John Dymond and bassist Gary Craig who seem to anticipate Linden’s every nuance.

With the possibility of Rosanne Cash’s The River and The Thread I can’t think of any recent album that is so completely inside of it’s songwriter.

This may be Colin Linden’s closest personal feelings put out for all to see.

Exceptional recording on all levels.

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist, songwriter/musician, Sun Media contributor and podcast radio host.

Check John with his Blues Rockin’ friends THE SHAFTMEN

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/the-worlds-gone-crazy/id673101570

http://www.theshaftmen.com

JOHN is on Twitter

https://twitter.com/emmsreviews

 

18
Sep
15

KEITH RICHARDS-CROSSEYED HEART-“GROOVE, HEART AND PLENTY OF SOUL” CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

keef studioKeith Richards Album Graphic

When you make a cd this soulful and fiery at 71 years old, retirement is not even a thought.

This is a man making music that he feels and plays deeply.

Check out the opening acoustic solo title track. It’s mixed so up front you would think you were right in the room.

The band, mostly Richards on guitar and bass, the fantastic groove of co-writer/co-producer Steve Jordan, guitarist Waddy Wachtel and plenty of guests breathe feel and dynamics into every track.

The sheer propulsion of Heartstopper, Trouble, and Amnesia with the late and great Bobby Keys sitting in just kill.

The spiritual ballads Just A Gift and the exquisite Robbed Blind with gorgeous steel guitar from Larry Campbell rank up there with the best ballads of Richards long career.

Cameos with Aaron Neville on the soulful Nothing On Me and a duet with Norah Jones on Illusion with Richards on piano dig deep.

Jordan, the Winos and Richards always get in the reggae pocket and the track Long Overdue fits well next to rockers like Substantial Damage and the Otis Redding-esque ballad Lovers Plea.

Rolling Stones albums and Keith Richards solo work are different beasts.

If anyone else made an album this good, this late in their career it would be held in high esteem.

And so it is!

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist, songwriter/musician, Sun Media contributor and podcast radio host.

Check out John with THE SHAFTMEN

http://www.theshaftmen.com

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/paycheque-blues/id365389443

VISIT JOHN ON TWITTER

https://twitter.com/emmsreviews

 

16
Sep
15

MONKEYJUNK-MOON TURN RED-CATCHY WITH SUBSTANCE-CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

mj moon turn red

If any cd could be called catchy with substance then it’s Moon Turn Red the fourth release from Canada’s MonkeyJunk.

It is impossible not to love the hooks and musicianship on this album.

From the killer tone of Tony D’s slide work on the opener Light It Up, with Steve Marriner ripping a throaty lead vocal and harp behind Matt Sobb’s shuffle one thing  is clear.

This band has come to lay it down.

After the push and pull accents of You and the Blues Traveller/Black Keys vibe of Show Me Yours, your ready to hear Hot Hot Papa.

David Wilcox lends his own genius to his classic re-make and if your not dancing on your patio with this, you should take a nap!!!

MJ take their songwriting to a whole other level on the Free/Paul Rodgers vibe of Live Another Day and the gorgeous Luther Allison influenced R & B/ Soul of Meet Me At Midnight.

Showing your influences while creating a unique original sound is a gift.

Mixing that with the chops of this trio just ups that ante.

Moon Turn Red is the band’s most cohesive work to date.

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist/songwriter-musician, Sun Media contributor and podcast radio host.

Check out John on Twitter

https://twitter.com/emmsreviews

Check out John’s Blues Rocking Band THE SHAFTMEN

http://www.theshaftmen.com

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/paycheque-blues/id365389443

 

08
Sep
15

DAVID GOGO-VICKSBURG CALL-“PRIMO BLUES ROCK”-CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

DavidGogo_PromoPhoto_byScottDoubt72dpi

The “straight on” blues rock takes on David Gogo’s new album Vicksburg Call are hard to resist.

Case in point, I cranked this up at a recent barbecue and everyone asked who is that? It sounds great.

Exactly.

You just know it works.

From the outset of Cuts Me To The Bone, the punchy What’s Not To Like or the covers of Stephen Stills/Manassas Jet Set or Neil Young’s The Loner Gogo keeps it simple while ripping off some killer lead work.

The mid tempo ballad Our Last Goodbye is a gem, Kim Simmonds of Savoy Brown fame takes care of the solos and fills on Fooling Myself  and Gogo goes pop with a superb vocal on Annie Lennox’s track Why.

Drummer Bill Hicks and bassist Jay Stevens go a long way in keeping this album feeling cohesive.

Simply put.

Gogo knows his stuff and your gonna’ like this folks!

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist/blues rock singer-songwriter, radio host and Sun Media contributor.

Check out John and the band here.

http://www.theshaftmen.com

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/paycheque-blues/id365389443

 

08
Sep
15

JOHN MAYALL-FIND A WAY TO CARE-“STILL PROMINENT, STILL VITAL” CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

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One listen to John Mayall’s new album Find A Way To Care and it’s clear that his playing is as vital as it’s ever been.

Check out the horn section and Mayall’s killer organ solo on The River’s Invitation, his solid vocal/piano solo on the upbeat title track and his gritty cover of I Want All My Money Back.

Wow!

Guitarist Rocky Athas burns his way through the afore mentioned Money Back, the bonus track War We Wage while the great  drummer Jay Davenport and bassist Greg Rzab are inventive and sturdy.

Elsewhere, Mayall accompanies himself on Crazy Lady, gets funky on the cover of I Feel So Bad and absolutely nails the piano solos on Long Summer Days.

Mayall. is a Blues Music pioneer and as far as I can hear as vital and prominent as he ever was.

Excellent work!

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist, blues rock songwriter, Sun Media contributor, radio host and vocalist with THE SHAFTMEN

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/the-worlds-gone-crazy/id673101570




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