The Revelers – Get Ready
If you have ever visited Cajun country, and I don’t necessarily mean New Orleans, rather the Bayou in the southwest part of the state, Zydeco music lives on in the rich tradition of the area and brought to prominence by the likes of Clifton Chenier, Buckwheat Zydeco and now The Revelers. Their latest work titled “Get Ready,” and their second independent release, is a clear and positive testament of how energized Zydeco music can make you feel. Having attended Cajun shrimp boils and hearing Zydeco music played live by elderly men who spoke more French than English, I can testify that The Revelers are the real thing. Classified as a mix of Cajun music, Zydeco, and “50’s infected swamp rock” “Get Ready” is a highly entertaining work by a group obviously well versed in music indigenous to Southwest Louisiana. Break out the shrimp, crawfish, Tabasco Sauce, the large pot, set everything to boil, spread out the newspaper on the picnic table and play The Revelers – then you’ll have a real Cajun seafood boil going on!
Underhill Rose – The Great Tomorrow
Underhill Rose LLC (SESAC) & Salley Williamson Music(SESAC)
After meeting at Warren Wilson College, where both Eleanor Underhill and Molly Rose were in attendance, the mutual decision to form a duo was reached. In 2011, Salley Williamson joined the duo and their first work as a trio was released in 2012. “The Great Tomorrow” is the third release by the group highlighted by a folk feel with tight harmonies. Complete with banjos, guitars and a stand up bass, “The Great Tomorrow” is a collection of bluegrass and folk music and Molly Rose’s vocals have a haunting similarity to an early Stevie Nicks. Bluegrass fans should find this a thoroughly enjoyable work by three women who have perfected their craft in just three releases.
Jon Pousette-Dart Talk
Little Big Deal Music LBD 005
If the names America, Poco and Crosby Still & Nash sound familiar, and Jon Pousette-Dart does not, don’t feel slighted. You might instead conjure the musical styles of the names you do recognize and that should provide a full understanding of the musical style of “Talk”. To say this release is “soft rock” is an apt description, one in the best tradition of the time when 70’s pop /soft rock groups were so plentiful. Pousette-Dart, while maybe not a notable mainstay of the soft rock genre has a rich pedigree. Having worked with artists like Bonnie Rait, James Taylor, Billy Joel, The Eagles, and many more notable 70’s acts, his own legacy seems to have previously ended in the 80’s with the breakup of his then band. Now he has reemerged with a new release and one that lives up to the musical ideals he practiced two decades ago. Anyone who enjoys the soft rock genre could hardly go wrong with “Talk.”
George Varghese – Back In Time
My initial impression when first listening to this work was that “this guy is a heck of a guitarist.” All six songs on “Back In Time” are instrumental and delivered in a high energy, rock and roll style. Musically, Varghese draws inspiration from the likes of Eric Clapton, Van Halen and Richie Sambora. Born and raised in India, Varghese relocated in 2003 to the Seattle area and has been a constant in the West Coast music scene. All six tracks were composed and produced by Varghese and recorded at Verge Studios, which, not coincidentally, is the studio he founded in 2013. Turn down the lights, turn up the volume and treat yourself to six tracks of high energy rock and roll by a highly talented guitarist, composer, producer, and recording studio owner.
Steven Young & The Union – Eagle Fort Rumble
Ragged Company Recordings RCR 001
Dublin, Ireland born Steven Young grew up listing to a wide variety of American music. His uncle gave him his first guitar and the first song he learned was the Don McLean classic, “American Pie.” From there he became absorbed in the music of Elvis, Billy Joel, Bob Dylan as well as the UK sounds of The Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Later came country artists like Hank Williams and Woody Guthrie. “Eagle Fort Rumble” is Young’s second release and one that looks to capture the Americana influences of his youth. Stylistically, there is a lot at work on this CD. Part rock, part blues, part ballad, “Eagle Fort Rumble,” right from the intro on “Shiver, “the first track, takes off in a collection of music that ranges from classic rock and roll complete with stunning guitar work, to “Lately I’ve Rescued A Rose,” a rock infused ballad. What Steven Young and the Union has accomplished with “Eagle Fort Rumble” is to release a work in the Americana rock and roll style and one that is a foot tapping triumph from beginning to end.
The Peterson Brothers – The Peterson Brothers
Blue Point Records BPTCD 1502
Upon first opening the CD’s jewel case, I was greeted by a picture of two smiling kids, one holding a bass and the other a guitar. “They look like children” was my immediate thought. Upon reading the liner notes I leaned that The Peterson Brothers first performed at the ages of 14 and 11, have shared the stage with B.B. King and Buddy Guy, have won an armful of awards, and are, quite simply, to good to be believed – almost at any age, and especially at 18 and 15, their ages when this self titled work was released. Manifestly, their style is hard driving blues a-la Stevie Ray Vaughn and not something you’d expect from two guys, who at the time of the CD’s release, were not yet old enough to buy a beer. They also infuse Philly Soul and a hint of funk into the mix. Both brothers are still in school and Alex, the younger of the two was even taking driver’s ed class when the CD was recorded. Imagine missing band practice because you are not yet old enough to drive! Thinking their youthful ages belie their talent would be a huge mistake. Because if you like good, old fashioned, Texas style blues / rock, you should seek out the Peterson Brothers. They are simply, absolutely, phenomenal, at 18 and 15 or, really, at any age and their first commercial release is positively magnificent.