Review: Dave Arcari & The Hellsinki Hellraisers – Whisky In My Blood

Posted on: Thursday, May 23, 2013

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Dave Arcari & The Hellsinki Hellraisers – Whisky In My Blood

(Blue North Records)

Scottish ‘rabble-rouser’ and all-round good guy Dave Arcari has teamed his ‘take no prisoners’ guitar and vocals with two Finnish musicians on this latest release, “Whisky In My Blood”, on the Finnish record lace, Blue North. He is accompanied on all tracks, bar one, by The Hellsinki Hellraisers – namely Juuso Haapasalo (upright & electric bass) and Honey Aaltonen (snare drum, cymbal, and rub-board).

As ever Dave’s roaring, growling vocals and his flailing National steel guitar are to the fore on the 11 orginals and three covers, but two standout tracks – “Still Friends” and “Third Time Lucky” see a switch to banjo. “Tell Me” has definite rockabilly flavours, and another gem is the driving blues, “Get Outta My Way”.

The Finnish musicians contribute fully to the glorious sound throughout the album, complementing Dave Arcari’s input. The three cover versions present are a brace of Robert Johnson classics, “Walkin’ Blues” and “Preachin’ Blues” – both given a ‘good kicking’ here, as is the oft-recorded “Jitterbug Swing”, from the pen of Bukka White, with the aforementioned ‘swing’ of the title firmly in place!

The raucous title cut “Whisky In My Blood”, is an ode to the ‘fire water’ itself; “Wherever I Go” is another highlight and swaggers along in its own sweet way! The whole collection was recorded live in the studio in Helsinki, and gives the album a great feel . . . with the mixing done in Arcari’s native Glasgow, and mastered in Chicago.

It’s easy to see why Dave Arcari is never off the road, with his never less than 100% commitment and energy to the music and performances he’s certainly the ‘real deal’ . . . . catch him on the road near you somewhere soon I’m sure!

GRAHAME RHODES

www.davearcari.com

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