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Music Review

Joe Bonamassa – Royal Albert Hall

Joe Bonamassa has played the Royal Albert Hall before – if memory serves, twice before – and it has a special place in his memory and his history. The sold out crowd definitely had a special place in their hearts for Joe Bonamassa and from the opening notes of ‘This Train’ they were bopping and boogieing. It helps that he has an awesome band behind him with a major name

Steps – Tears On The Dancefloor

Earlier this year Steps announced that not only were they reuniting for their milestone anniversary, but they would be returning with their first studio album since 2012’s Light Up The World. With the reception for their fourth studio album having been a little more lukewarm than they would have hoped, the group are determined to ensure that this return is on their terms and has the impact they deserve as

Imelda May – Life.Love.Flesh.Blood

In 1962 Neil Sedaka wrote ‘Breaking up is hard to do’ an ode to the parting of the hearting, the (dis)union and separating of the ways, an artistic avenue that numbers albums from Bob Dylan, Marvin Gaye and ABBA. Heartache for art’s sake. L.L.F.B. is an aural autobiographical skin-shedding and a musique metamorphosis so bare, raw and visceral that outlines the re-emergence of a ‘self’ through the power of (re)creation.

Dark Model – Saga

Model Electronic Records (label) 24 March 2017 (released) 23 min Jon C. Ireson Epic is a word that gets thrown around far too casually in the realm of music critics. An indie band strumming their hearts out on two chords while cooing “Oooohh ooohh ooohh” gets labeled epic. The bass dropping on an MC right as he delivers his generic punch line: epic. The psych rock guitarist leaving his Space

Fairport Convention – 50:50@50

The title is intended to cover all the bases: the band is 50 years old and the album is equally split live/recorded songs. Though that doesn’t truly reflect that Fairport Convention are much more likely to be seen on a stage rather than a recording studio these days with two nationwide tours and a festival every year. The main interest is on the new material, as the live recordings, good

Dave Hanson – Live!

Six String Social (label) 17 April 2017 (released) 13 min Andy Snipper Blues in the raw is a wonderful and heartlifting thing. This EP from Dave Hanson is perfect example of why I go to see bands live and wash in the experience of a bunch of musicians working with each other and making more music than any of them could individually. Between Hanson’s guitar and vocals, Martin Longhawn’s keys

Michael Hornbuckle – Soul Repo

To be honest, Michael Hornbuckle is not a name I’m familiar with but on the basis of this release that is my loss. The album is really rather fine. He seems to come from a Blues family and you can really hear the wealth of styles in his sound that come from being brought up with a Blues guitarist father (Michael was drumming for his dad from age 13) and

In 'Hans Zimmer Revealed,' the Veteran Film Score Composer Kicks Off His Concert Tour and Warms Up for Coachella

Young fans come out in force as the Oscar-winning composer of iconic film scores for ‘The Lion King,’ ‘The Dark Night,’ ‘Pirates of Caribbean,’ ‘Gladiator’ and countless others launches a symphonic concert tour. It was not a fluke or any sort of stunt casting that landed film composer Hans Zimmer a starring slot this weekend and next at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival — arbiter of all that

Red Butler – The New Crawdaddy

Last night’s show at the New Crawdaddy in Billericay featured the new lineup of Red Butler, the first chance I’ve had to see them since their new vocalist Dan Spellman joined the band.A more radical change I couldn’t have imagined but all to the good as he is a superb vocalist – in a cheeky chappy sort of way – and gives the band a more powerful and dynamic presence

Erja Lyytinen – Stolen Hearts

The undoubted queen of European slide and now she is showing chops that no-one expected. Her melodies and themes are exceptional and when you add her great vocal style and sense of humour you get a package that is pretty well unbeatable. Most of the songs here were featured in her live show at the 100 Club on Tuesday and, while they were great live, they actually stand up as