Review: Peter Novelli – St. Amant Sessions

Posted on: Saturday, Apr 25, 2015

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Peter Novelli – St. Amant Sessions

(Chalet Music CD-1501)

A new name to me, but this is singer and guitarist Peter’s third CD. I’m going to have to hunt down the others. Peter is based in New Orleans and there is a strong bayou feel to this album – he even has Cajun accordionist Sammy Naquin on a couple of items and zydeco accordion star Chubby Carrier on a further two, and the comparisons that have been made with slide guitar ace Sonny Landreth are not far wide of the mark.

As if to underline this, Sonny himself guests on the opener, ‘Louisiana Sunrise’. The French influence crops up naturally enough on ‘Je Ne Sais Quoi’, and Peter can remind the listener of the great, sadly under-rated Bobby Charles (Robert Guidry) on a number like the mellow(-ish) ‘Bourbon Street Blue’, which follows on from the raw, churning swamp boogie-blues of ‘Spirit Passing By’.

The instrumentals ‘Boudin’, the 60s inflected ‘Shreveport Stomp’ and the joyously rocking ‘I-10 Boogie’ (a crash course in Louisiana sounds) all showcase Peter’s guitar mastery. This CD was a lovely surprise and one I will return to again and again. As Clifton Chenier said, “Laissez les bon temps rouler!”

NORMAN DARWEN

http://peternovelli.com/

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