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Steve McCormick

Louisa

Review by Gary Hill

I really like the retro sounds on this release. The album covers quite a bit of range within that basic concept. We get things that call to mind The Band and Little Feat and others that are more bluesy. At times funk comes into play, too. It's all effective, and this works well from start to finish.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 5. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2022.

Track by Track Review
Louisa
A retro rocking jam is in the menu here. This is a funny little piece with plenty of old-school elements built into it. It reminds of things like The Band and Little Feat. There is a zydeco angle to this piece, too.
My Sister
This cut is also quite retro in nature, but in a very different way. There is a bluesy kind of soul sound here. The synthesizer is a great touch here, as is the organ. The blues guitar soloing is so classy. The female backing vocals bring some magic to this.
Wide Horizon
While no molds are broken here, this is a tasty classic sounding number that works really well. Some of the guitar soloing on this makes me think of The Grateful Dead.
What Are You Afraid Of?
The percussion part that starts this makes me think of Steely Dan's "Rikki Don't Lose that Number" a bit. The tune works from there to more slow moving, bluesy rock with a timeless vibe.
There Is Smoke
They seriously bring the funk on this number. It has a great groove and vibe and really works like crazy. I love the guitar soloing on this thing. The whole tune just oozes class, though. I'd consider it one of the highlights here.
Spend Some Time
This is a cool groove. It has more modern textures, but also plenty of retro sound. It's dramatic and powerful. There are some hints of The Doors here.
Tie Me Up
This has a real classic sound to it. The organ lends retro texture. The tune has both a bluesy angle and a singer-songwriter vibe. The guitar work is on fire.
No Easy Way Out
More of that blues element is on display as this gets going. There are some zydeco things here, too, though. The slide guitar is so tasty. The vocal arrangement is sublime. As strong as the first two cuts were, this definitely elevates it even further. The lyrics are timely and topical.
 
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