Review: Paul Karapiperis – Something Like Blues Or Haunted Ballads

Posted on: Thursday, Jul 5, 2012

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Paul Karapiperis – Something Like Blues Or Haunted Ballads

(Free download from group website or 3 Euros from CD Baby)

Greece may be having its problems at the moment, but may be it gives inspiration to singer and harmonica player Paul Karapiperis, founder member of the highly-regarded band Small Blues Trap. Take a listen to ‘You Expect Me To Do The Right Thing’ for a direct reference to his country’s woes.

This album – which Paul would like to issue on CD when things pick up – is a completely solo effort, with Paul’s voice coming across somewhere between Howling Wolf and Tom Waits after both men have emptied that bottle of rot-gut whisky and the box of cheap cigars. The backing uses the usual blues instruments but is otherwise rather experimental – the album title is certainly appropriate as certain tracks (the opener ‘Light To The Darkest Train’, and its closing reprise, for starters) come across as quite spooky.

The harp wails, Paul plays acoustic, electric, steel, 12-string and bass guitars as required, plus seemingly random percussion and keyboards. The result is a little unsettling – this is not the blues as easy listening – definitely committed and passionate, and worth investigating by those who prefer their music to mean something.

NORMAN DARWEN

www.cdbaby.com/cd/paulkarapiperis

www.smallbluestrap.gr/mp3/mp3.html

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