CD Reviews

Tim Gartland lets his talent shine on If You Want A Good Woman

Tim Gartland lets his talent shine on If You Want A Good Woman

Tim Gartland had been on the greater-Boston blues and roots scene for many years before relocating to Nashville. Maintaining a strong connection to New England, Gartland also maintains a strong fan base here by releasing fine CDs like this year’s If You Want A Good Woman to remember him by while he organizes his next stop up here. If You Want A Good Woman is loaded with Gartland’s fine vocals and exceptional harmonica work. He is also a strong songwriter who has written some of these tunes with local keyboardist Tom West who also makes a solid showing on this disc.

The Wildcat O'Halloran Band have fun with Hot Pulldown, a fine bluesy concoction

The Wildcat O’Halloran Band have fun with Hot Pulldown, a fine bluesy concoction

The Wildcat O’Halloran Band are at it again. They’ve come up with another disc of fine, cruising, soothing, and sometimes stomping blues with this Hot Pulldown album. O’Halloran showcases a lot of lyrical wit in this mostly originals CD while his guitar, vocals, and his crack support band put things across in edgy, feisty, bluesy style.

Brian Templeton lets his soul shine on Blue Testament album

Brian Templeton lets his soul shine on Blue Testament album

Some years ago, greater-Boston vocalist and harmonica player Brian Templeton got religion. The gentle giant, already a pleasant fellow to begin with, accepted the salvation that many musicians of our generation have accepted. Templeton expresses his faith and spirituality on this album Blue Testament. Whether or not fans of Templeton’s oldies rock and roll, vintage country, or blues feel the faith as deeply has he does, they should enjoy this work of powerful bluesy, rockin, swinging music. Not too many people can make gospel rock like Templeton can. It doesn’t hurt that Templeton has drummer Lorne Entress, keyboardist Dave Lamina, bassist Ed Spargo, and guitarist Lyle Brewer along for the ride.

Photo courtesy of the artist

Duquette shines on Trust The Night album

Duquette’s latest CD Trust The Night is an unusual amalgamation of roots music and edgy, classic rock idioms. While his combination of genres and the strong musical personality he uses to weld them together make his music hard to pigeonhole, it also makes his music easy to like. There is a freewheeling sweep of musical styles that come together brilliantly and perfectly in each track.

John Juxo is exceptionally good on Long Distance Driver album

John Juxo is exceptionally good on Long Distance Driver album

Rhode Island musician-singer-songwriter John Juxo has recently released what might be this year’s best New England blues album. Long Distance Driver is at least one of the best to drop in 2017, Aside from offering his own raspy vocals and charming keyboards, Juxo has friends like singer Lisa Marie, saxophonist Myanna Pontoppidan, acoustic guitar player Alex Krepkikh and other area favorites helping him pump out tasty, greasy, toe-tapping blues numbers.

Swamp Thing is a fine document of Greedy Geezer and his talented friends

Swamp Thing is a fine document of Greedy Geezer and his talented friends

Swamp Thing — The Legend Of A Bayou Boy –Vol. 1 is an album of songs written by south of Boston musician-singer-songwriter Greedy Geezer. Greedy Geezer is the fellow who hosted a monthly Friday night jam of Americana musicians at Quincy’s Granite Rail Tavern. This album, recorded with musicians from those Friday night extravaganzas, reflect the Geezer’s interest in Americana roots music and early rock and roll. There’s plenty of guitar, bass, keyboards, and drums to keep this CD rocking. There are also plenty of banjo, accordion, and washboard to flavor it up in earthy idioms and rustic vibes. And it’s a whole heap of fun and a pile of energy.

Grace Morrison soars on perfect Americana roots album I'm The Apple

Grace Morrison soars on perfect Americana roots album I’m The Apple

Grace Morrison’s latest CD I’m The Apple is a treat for the ears on every track. Morrison’s bright, chirpy timbre and vocal glide make her a winsome favorite in the local scene. Her songwriting prowess allows her to conjure many fine lyrical moments, and the instrumentation she and her support band lay out sparkle in their own special light during their special moments. This especially true of producer Jon Evans guitar work and the extra texture offered by backing singer John Baptista.

Evan Goodrow offers fine funk vocal and guitar performances on new album Burn

Evan Goodrow offers fine funk vocal and guitar performances on new album Burn

Evan Goodrow’s latest album Burn makes the most of this local blue eyed soul man’s electric guitar talents and svelte vocal ability. Goodrow keeps himself tighter with his trio than he’s ever played before, and he throws in a few pleasant surprises with his song selection.

Linda Marks shines on new Say Yes To Love album

Linda Marks shines on new Say Yes To Love album

Boston’s jazz chanteuse Linda Marks has been a fixture on the local scene for some time now. Her new release, Say Yes To Love, will have you saying yes to Linda Marks. Her voice is remarkably bright and tender, hitting the listener’s soft spot on every track. Her knack for arranging material from other artists and songwriters is unerring, always offering a fresh perspective that is likable and engaging.

Susan Cattaneo goes for broke with magnum opus The Hammer And The Heart album

Susan Cattaneo goes for broke with magnum opus The Hammer And The Heart album

There are times when an artist has to move forward in a big way. Boston’s roots singer-songwriter Susan Cattaneo went for broke and recorded a double disc CD set. This new album, The Hammer & The Heart, teeming with quality songs and high octane guest musician and singers, should be a huge artistic success, the kind that will gain her new respect and awe from listeners. From the larger movements of sound to the more subtle nuanced touches, Cattaneo paints a large, masterfully portrait of the American landscape while injecting her own personal points of view with an honestly that sometimes soothes and sometimes stings.