Blues Matters Magazine, Issue 107 Apr/May 2019, Live Review, Skegness

"A really excellent set with Zoe's superb voice sympathetically supported by three equally superb musicians"

Two gigs, duo - afternoon, full band- evening.

Zoe Schwarz and Rob Koral began deep in the Blues - Rob's walking bassline on guitar providing a cool platform for Zoe's fine voice.  They continued in that vein with classics from the likes of Billie Holiday, Nina Simone and Etta James.  Their own material included a hymn to a long-gone venue in the unlikely sounding location of Chislehurst entitled 'Way Down in the Caves'.  Altogether a very classy set which served as an appetiser for the full band show later that evening. 

The evening session began with Zoe Schwarz - this time with Rob Koral on guitar now joined by Pete Whittaker on Hammond and Paul Robinson on drums - known collectively as Blue Commotion.  A very experienced and skilled band with a set containing a great variety of material which allowed Zoe and every member of the band to give of their best.  'Way Down In The Caves' reprised from the earlier set, took on a new dynamic with drummer Robinson driving at break-neck speed.  Pete Whittaker's Hammond solo on 'I Put a Spell On You' was suitably classic, whilst on the same tune, Rob was having a lot of fun with his newly acquired Les Paul.  On 'You've Changed' Rob entertained us with some very tasty wah-wah - this is a man totally 'at home' on guitar - from a subtle jazzy approach in the afternoon set to solid blues in the evening and everything in between, all is possible!  A really excellent set with Zoe's superb voice sympathetically supported by three equally superb musicians.

  • Words by: Rowland Jones

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