Starlite Campbell Band - 'Blueberry Pie'

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 19, 2017    
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Not trying to reinvent the wheel, the band pulls off a rewarding, old-school, listening experience.

This husband and wife duo, who upped sticks from the UK for Spain, deliver a satisfying slice of classic sixties-inspired Blues Rock on their debut release 'Blueberry Pie'. The production has a warm, authentic late sixties feel and Simon Campbell's guitar tone channels the main players of those days without sounding pastiche. His playing is fluid and he's mature and experienced enough not to over-egg the guitar, playing what's required and leaving space rather than filling it with a blur of notes. Vocally, at times, there's a mix of Gary Moore and Peter Green going on and he connects emotionally with his self-penned lyrics. What helps elevate this disc is the people Campbell's brought on board to make up the band.

Steve Gibson's drumming is classy and has roots in the Jazzy feel of those original guys, he also plays some lovely hi-hat in places. Keyboard player Jonny Henderson's contribution is all over the disc. He brings the Booker T And The MG's groove to 'Walkin' Out The Door', a good-natured organ sound to the playfully grumpy old man tune 'Don't Get Me Wrong' and a particularly cheeky, wink-wink sound to the jam track 'Shimmy' that has an early Freddy King vibe.

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Suzy Starlite's bass is clear and solid in the mix and when she adds harmony vocals it works well. On 'Guilty' she handles lead vocals, but it's one of the weaker songs on the disc. There's a good variety on the record from the hushed late night Blues of 'I Need A Light' and 'Cry Over You' to upbeat Rockers like 'You're So Good For Me', the BB King style sting of 'Thrill You' and the swinging, Jimmy Reed-like 'Say What You Want' that features harmonica from Danny Boy Sanchez.

The lyrics are often better thought out than the average Blues record, raising a smile in places or being more thoughtful as on the rootsy acoustic title track that addresses change. Not trying to reinvent the wheel, the band pulls off a rewarding, old-school, listening experience.

Duncan Jamieson

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