Quarto Valley (label)
07 June 2019 (released)
19 May 2019
It’s difficult to believe that a band whose first release was in 1967 – ‘Shake Down’ – as the Savoy Brown Blues Band and still remain relevant today.
In fact I would go so far to say that this album is one of the best Blues albums I’ve heard in ages.
They are now stripped down to a three piece with Kim Simmonds – founder member and a constant in the band since 1965 – on Vocals and guitar, Pat DeSalvo (bass) and Garnet Grimm (drums) who have both been with Simmonds since 2009.
As a three piece they are tight, focused and seem to deliver with effortless power. Simmonds vocals are gruff and have a certain ‘twang’ to them while his guitar playing burns and soars as he works the frets alongside DeSalvo’s melodious bass playing and solid drumming from Grimm.
The album itself goes from the boogie of ‘Walking On Hot Stones’ through rocky numbers such as ‘Red Light Mama’ to classic Blues like ‘Neighbourhood Blues’ or poignant and soulful on ‘Selfish World’ and Simmonds vocal and guitar carries the changes effortlessly.
Every now and again you hear something and think “aha, there is some ZZ Top in that” or “mmm, very Chris Rea like” but then you think again and it’s more like Simmonds preceded both of those as well as Mark Knopfler and you get the importance of Savoy Brown in Blues/rock and Progressive rock over the years.
It really is a wonderful album, full of great playing and writing. This one I listen to just for the pleasure of it.