Sunday, February 25, 2018

Guitarist/Songwriter Davide Pannozzo new album "Unconditional Love"...modern blues with panache

Internationally renowned blues guitarist Davide Pannozzo's new album, Unconditional Love, was produced by Grammy-winning producers Steve Jordan and Will Lee. Davide, who recently reached the semifinals at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, has performed as a headliner in the United States, Italy, Germany, France and the UK, and has been described by critics as one of the most interesting artists in contemporary blues guitar. 

Davide -- whose style is very much his own, even though splashes of Jeff Beck, David Gilmour, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix can be heard in his music -- is living proof of the existence of the American dream. After releasing an album through Universal, he started working on new music and decided, unsolicited, to send his material to Steve Jordan. Recognizing his talent, Jordan gave him a call and offered to work together on the project. Davide promptly relocated from Italy for New York to begin work on the new album. 

Unconditional Love talks about our times. It’s a modern blues album that overflows with strong storytelling, all underpinned by Davide's belief that each person is valuable and can play a role in making the world a better place. Jordan and Lee helped him forge a powerful, elegant sound that highlights Davide's sophisticated guitar playing, powerful singing, and intricately nuanced songwriting, making the album unique in its genre. The incredible Unconditional Love features the stellar musicianship of Shawn Pelton, Ricky Peterson and Oli Rockberger, and includes eight original songs plus inspired covers of George Harrison's Wah Wah and Billy Cobham's Stratus.

Official website:

Marty's review: the multi-talented Davide Pannozzo impresses on a high level with this latest release, showcasing not only his amazing talent as a guitarist but also his accomplished songwriting skills. Featuring 8 originals plus covers of Wah Wah and Stratus, this is one killer of an album and only further demonstrates why this artist deserves the accolades and recognition he receives and deserves.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Blues guitarist/vocalist James Kelly releases first solo album Rock N Roll Samurai..raucous and smoldering!

James Kelly hails from Sydney, Australia, and, after almost 25 years of playing guitar in countless bands across the country, he finally got around to releasing his own solo album. The album goes by the name of Rock N Roll Samurai and it features James on guitars, bass and vocals, Carlos Adura on drums and the legendary Big Blind Ray Lechminka on harmonica. The music is a raucous, smoldering stew of so many of his musical influences, drenched in a swampy, blues rock gravy.

Marty's review: James Kelly's brand of hot, pumping, balls to the wall style of blues-rock hits you right between the eyes and will leave you breathless in a very short time. James doesn't hold back with his subject matter either, with everything from (in his own words) "sadistic femme fatales, pushers and dealers, cannibalistic villains and nihilistic abandon!" He delivers the lyrics with a devilish rasp in his voice and his tight band are up front and in your face. With track titles like "Light the Fuse", "My Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama" and "Cocaine Carolina", what more can you say. Plus his version of John Lee Hooker's "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer" is a killer!

Official website:

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Patrik Jansson Band new album "So Far to Go"... hot and pumping blues-rock from Sweden

So Far to Go is the third album from Patrik Jansson Band and the follow up to the critically acclaimed 2014 release Here We Are. The all new lineup includes Patrik Jansson on guitar & vocals, Gustaf Andersson on Hammond B3, Fender Rhodes and Piano, Martin Forsstedt on Drums and Thomas Andersson on Bass. The band chemistry is more apparent than ever and each musician’s contribution as well as the songs themselves makes So Far To Go their strongest album yet.

Mikael "Mike" Fall (Harmonica world champion 2013) does a guest appearance on the track Too Blind To See as well as Therese Thomsson who sings a duet on Can't Get You (Out Of My Head). A horn section on four of the tracks also contributes to giving the album a sophisticated classic sound.

PJB has further expanded up on their sound and while some songs are even more in the line of traditional Chicago blues, like Can't Get You (Out Of My Head) and the blues ballad Those Days Are Gone, which best can be described as a mix of B.B. King and Walter Trout. There are on the other end of the spectrum contemporary blues-rock songs like the first single Life Without You, a funky, groovy and highly energetic rocker. As well as the funky instrumental That 70's Thing which brings to mind 70´s era Freddie King. The common thread through it all is the apparent focus on great songwriting and creating great melodies, arrangements and musical performances that makes each song stand on its own.

Listening to the album you can spot influences of contemporary blues masters like Joe Bonamassa, Walter Trout, Gary Moore, Robert Cray, Jeff Healey and Matt Schofield, but also the old blues giants like B.B. King, Freddie King and Stevie Ray Vaughan. But most of all it sounds like Patrik Jansson Band 2017.

Marty's review: fans of traditional and contemporary blues will eat this one up and find it very easy to digest. Searing blues guitar from Patrik Jansson backed by his tight and professional band of accomplished musicians with some guests added in the mix. Some highlights are the keyboard solo on Life Without You, guest vocalist Therese Thomsson on Can't Get You (Out Of My Head) and the funky groove of That 70's Thing. Blues fans will find plenty of influences from artists past and present but the PJB make the sounds their own and deliver them with gusto and finesse.

Recorded at Sound Society Studios, Gävle. Mixed and mastered by Patrik Jansson and Martin Karlegård at Sub Mob Studios, Stockholm 2017.



Friday, February 9, 2018

Blues/Rock/Soul artist Popa Chubby new album "Two Dogs"..a big, bad sonic bomb!

Popa Chubby drops a big, bad, sonic bomb with his excellent and timely new album, “Two Dogs.” On it, Popa explores myriad musical styles and genres while keeping it close to his rock and soul core. You’ll hear the Popa you know and love and things you haven’t heard before.

Popa started work on “Two Dogs” with a lot of amazing sounds in his head and powerful feelings in his heart. Recorded at his home studio in New York’s Hudson Valley, Popa engineered and produced the record. He also plays drums, bass and percussion on some tracks. Renowned keyboard player and Popa’s long-time collaborator, Dave Keyes, appears throughout the album. Popa’s daughter, Tipitina Horowitz, plays trumpet and contributes horn compositions. Ace drummer, Sam “Freight-train” Bryant keeps the beat real and rocking.

In the album’s liner notes, Popa expresses how he feels about the times we live in and expands on the inspiration behind the title song: “We have become polarized as a race. There is a battle inside each of us. Each day we rise and must choose our path calling upon each other and our own spirits for strength and courage. The dog we feed is the one that rules, the dog we starve dies of neglect. It is up to each of us to use our spirit to feed the dog that will enable all of us to thrive.”

This quote from a review of “Two Dogs” published in Blues Magazine does a good job of summing up the man and his music: “To call him a blues artist is to belittle who he is and what he stands for. Horowitz is so much more than that: Singer, songwriter, guitar stylist, his passions run deep and shine bright. With a performance style he describes as “the Stooges meets Buddy Guy, Motörhead meets Muddy Waters, and Jimi Hendrix meets Robert Johnson,” Popa Chubby is an endearing character who is one of the genre’s most popular and innovative figures.”

Official website:

Marty's review: Popa Chubby delivers his brand of rocking blues with soul on this latest release that doesn't hold back. Top-notch production, songwriting and fine musicianship all combine to make this one that will be worthy of many listens. Popa's years in the business and multiple talents come together on this 13 track release that covers several genres, all with the Popa Chubby sound that fans know and love, big, bad and boom!

Friday, February 2, 2018

Guitarist Andy Gunn aka Scotland's B B King new release "Warm Heart Blues"...classic blues sound

Andy Gunn is sadly one of these special artists who’s lived what he sings and has been through a lot, but, like many a blues musician, Andy’s been gifted with 9 lives... His music, life story and determination have really inspired and he was recently heralded as ‘a great lost Scottish talent and one of our finest ever blues players’. When Rob Ellen wrote ‘Andy Gunn is the blues’, he was referring to the deep personal tragedies that have affected Andy’s life and health.

Born with Haemophilia, as a child, Andy was one of the patients affected by blood products contaminated with HIV and Hepatitis C in the 1980. For many years, Andy campaigned to bring justice for his fellow victims of the contaminated blood scandal. These protests eventually helped to bring ex-gratia payments to others who were affected by the tragedy. These infections played a large part in him falling into the world of alcoholism and addiction as a teenager, he has now been in recovery for many years and tries his best to give back to others suffering from depression and addiction in the community.

Too Many Guitars to Give Up Now” hasn’t been the easiest to make, having been suffering from Peripheral Neuropathy (numbness) in his hands due to his ill health Andy had to fight on to produce this remarkable record. Inspired by a conversation about owning an embarrassing number of guitars, when asked “how many do you have?” all Andy could say was “put it this way, I’ve got too many guitars to give up now!” and so this album was born.

Recorded on an analogue system to retain that warm classic blues sound the album was recorded live over two days due to Andy’s Peripheral Neuropathy. His determination and strength as a guitarist is truly inspirational, This is an record as real as the life he’s lead through the ups and the downs. Andy can articulate the blues like no other, his optimism, style comes across on this record and transends words live. Seeing him perform is an electrifying, uplifting and unforgettable experience. When Blues in Britain described Andy’s music as ‘a resounding triumph over adversity’, they were on to something. 

Going from strength to strength, and playing gigs throughout the UK Andy will be on touring to support the release of this record alongside some of Scotland’s finest musicians, please see his UK tour dates below..

2nd Balintore Inn, Balintore 9pm
3rd Wick Assembly Rooms 7:30pm £7
10th Blue Lamp, Aberdeen £15, £10 concessions
16th Stramash, Edinburgh 7pm start
17th Stereo, Glasgow 7pm £8
23rd Eden Court, Inverness 8pm £13
24th MacPhail Centre, Ullapool 7pm £7

8th Cluny, Newcastle £8
9th The Whisky Jar, Manchester £8
10th The Magnet, Liverpool £8
11th Half Moon, Putney London £8 (£10 on door)
17th Smokestack, Leeds £6
18th The Maze, Nottingham £6