Review: Dan Sowerby – Milestone

Posted on: Saturday, Feb 22, 2014

Dan SowebyCD 001.jpg

Dan Sowerby – Milestone

(Sweet Wasp Music: SWCD003)

From Salisbury, Dan Sowerby and his band are a young dynamic trio giving us, in this album ‘Milestone’, some deep felt blues, folk influences with a hint of 70’s soft rock. All the tracks on the album are original material.

Fronting the band on vocals and guitar is Dan Sowerby, on double bass and backing vocals is Matt Paull while on drums and percussion is Ben Coley. Guests on the album included Ray Drury on keyboards and Hugh Budden on harmonica.

The album kicks off with ‘Good Feelings’, a rootsy 12 bar blues with excellent resonator slide guitar and harmonica. This is followed by a slow Chicago style blues, ‘Moan N Wail’ with hints of BB King, a laid back, well put together track with some cool piano.

Upping the tempo a rockin’ number, ‘When I Play The Blues’ leaning towards swing, it shows where the double bass is at. Next a slow bluesy number, ‘Keep Moving’ , followed by ‘Find Your Soul’, a 70’s sound up tempo soft rock track with a class guitar solo and tight drumming.

‘Milestone’, the name sake of the album, leans towards folk rock. Some great acoustic guitar playing at the beginning of the track. The content of this number also suits Dan’s voice. I found the next track interesting, ‘Working For The Man’ which has a 70’s west coast soft rock feel.

Slowing the pace right down ‘Messin Round’ has some full on Hammond input and cool sexy guitar work in this slow blues number. Changing the musical input ‘Start All Over’ is a full on funky number, great drumming and funky guitar on this track.

I had to do a double take for the next track ‘Love And Life’ , not unlike Bill Nelson’s Be Bop Deluxe. It has that 70’s soft rock sound. Dan has a similarity to Bill’s voice too, uncanny! A well put together track. Then it’s on to something completely different.

‘ Winter Of 75’ is a stomping hillbilly track with some great slide on the resonator guitar and some very tight drumming. Continuing with the acoustic feel with more super slide guitar, ‘Chasin His Tail’ has some interesting almost reggae rhythms, with some great double bass solo work. I must say I really liked this track.

‘Bumble Bee’ is an up tempo country folk number, very rhythmic and nice harmonies. Some class acoustic guitar too. The final track on the album is a slow laid back number ‘English Sun’, which has a bit of a Santana or Steely Dan feel. Great mix of guitar work on this track with some wah-wah, acoustic and classic solos.

A great mix of styles on this well put together album, to suit everyone’s taste. Dan, as the lynchpin of the outfit, does a great job, but may need to get a bit more of the ‘Wolf’ man into the vocals on some of the blues numbers to give them that ‘edge’. An easy listen with class musicianship, so well done all round!

ROSY GREER – Lancashire Blues Archive

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