Archive for August, 2018



The re-release  of the Joanne Shaw Taylor album Wild proves that Blues Rock is above all about well written songs.

She could play this album live from front to back and it would still kill.

Besides when you check out selected tracks from Gary Moore, Buddy Guy, Foghat, Johnny Winter, Cream, SRV, etc it comes down to how good the songs are.

Sure, Shaw Taylor has great guitar chops but she has become such a good vocalist.

My Heart’s Got a Mind of It’s Own with it’s killer horn charts, I Wish I Could Wish You Back, the slow excellent vibe of Wild Is The Wind and the opening salvo of Dyin’ To Know show off those vocals.

Blues Rock could easily become a major commercial force again.

I put this album up there with Joe Bonamassa’s superb Driving Towards The Daylight as proof.

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist,  bandleader with Canadian Blues Rockers THE SHAFTMEN and Post Media contributor.


justin saladino band, sons of rhytmn, steve krase band, angel forrest-cd reviews john emms

Toronto’s Sons of Rhythm debut EP is a consistent, infectious and soulful debut.

The band shows deep respect for the Toronto sound steeped in George Oliver, The Lincolns and Domenic Troiano to name only a few

Six songs including a smoking cover of Allen Toussaint’s Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky and originals like Talkin’ Bout My Baby, the Boz Scaggs vibe of You’ve Got A Friend, and the torrid rockabilly tinged Swing Thing are key.

The acoustic Will I Ever See You Again is nice but seems a bit out of place considering the Jimmy Reed on steroids vibe of the opening track My Time Is Gonna Come.

All songs were written by bassist Mick Maratta and the band is anchored by ace drummer Mike Carbone, the gifted axe work of Federico Luiu guitar and a complete wicked star turn by Keyboard/Sax  player Anthony Brancati.

Whether the band does more original work in the future is anyone’s guess but what a start!!!

Justin Saladino Band A Fools Heart their second album falls into a more rock/roots territory. Tracks like Honey which works a Jack De Keyzer R & B vibe, the slower Memphis sound of Put The Hammer Down and A Fool I’ll Stay which has a kind of Sheepdogs vibe work very well

The band touches a lot of different vibes which include funk and acoustic based material.

You’re gonna like it!

Steve Krase is a crazy good harmonica player but Just Waitin” his new album with his solid band is uneven in a few places.

I have to say I prefer his last album I Should’ve Have Seen It Coming.

On the new album covers of Settin’ the Woods On Fire and the the zydeco bend on The Ballad of Jed Clampett rub me the wrong way.

However, Tracks like Just Waitin’ on My Baby  the J Geils band vibe of Blame It All On Love work great as does the excellent cover of My Baby Walked Off

Great guitar work from David Carter throughout.

Angel Forrest is a top live draw with her great band anywhere across Canada.

That is a fact.

This double live album Electric Love is flat out a mix of very good covers of House of the Rising Sun, Walkin’ Blues and the excellent material of All The Way, Spoil Me Up and the killer track Crucify.

Superb work from the whole band which includes the monster axe work of Ricky Paquette.

Forrest can’t miss!!!

JOHN EMMS is veteran music journalist and Post Media contributor. John is also a bandleader with Canadian Blues Rock/Roots band THE SHAFTMEN …..available worldwide

August 2018