Plunger Music Blog, May 2015, 'I'll Be Yours Tonight' Live album review.New cutting edge Blog from the brothers that 'know', words by Moray Stuart, photos by Al Stuart. "Not gush, nor glaury... Genre-blind, quality-hundry, independent.
After three studio albums a live Blue Commotion record was long overdue, although the wait has allowed the band to compile a sizeable and varied body of work to draw on. Proceedings open with the choppy soul strut of 'Your Sun Shines Rain' with Rob Koral's beefy guitar and Pete Whittaker adding 60s Go Go organ accents, before the smoky last waltz vibe of Billie Holiday's 'Fine & Mellow' allows Zoe's vocal to run the gamut from seductive Eartha Kitt breathiness to tonsil-wobbling power, interlaced with rob's complex fills.
A staccato beat lends 'Smile' a ska-like vibe, assisted by the oscillating horns of Ian Ellis and Andy Urquhart: Zoe's mellifluous vocal lines contrast well with the jerky backing, all topped with Rob's discursive guitar. The horns also underpin the snare-led 60s soul of 'Sat It Isn't So' and their interjections and the unison horn-guitar riff and rich textures to 'I'll Do Anything'. The upbeat vibe continues with the kicking two-step 'Liberated Woman' and the lighthearted 'Last Time' romp of 'Let Me Sing The Blues': that latter proving an ideal vehicle for Si Genaro's harp and Si also features heavily in the rockabilly call-and-response of 'Take Me Back'.
Zoe's voice really shines in the slower blues: impassioned in the imperious 'Beatitudes', oozing plaintive heartache on 'We'll Find A Way, and her vocal gymnastics on 'I Believe In You' show formidable range. The unexpected highlight is 'Angel Of Mercy': brooding guitar, Paul Robinson's metronomic rim-shots and Bach-tinged organ evoke progressive acts like Focus or Procul Harum before closing with a highly proggy switch to the major key!
This sophisticated album proves that, as with so many bands, live is where it's really at.
33 Records - 33WM151
- Words by: Moray Stuart