Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Levee Town -- "Pages of Paperwork"

Levee Town is a Kansas City based quartet: Brandon Hudspeth on guitar and vocals, Jimmie Meade on harmonica and vocals, Jacque Garoutte on bass and vocals, and Jan Faircloth on drums. This is their fourth release after forming in 2002. They were discovered at the 2007 International Blues Challenge, where they were finalists. Pages of Paperwork is a collection of fourteen original songs, three by Garoutte and ten by Hudspeth. Meade writes one song.

The guys in Levee Town have been playing together for almost a decade now, and it shows. These guys plug in, look around at each other, and hit it hard. They play tight, smooth and balanced. Listening to this disc on a grey rainy day here in Atlanta, I hear echoes of Led Zeppelin circa "Houses of the Holy." Everybody can flat-out play, and everybody gets a chance to shine--this is a musical machine and they're making the best music they know how. The vocals are deep and clear whether Hudspeth or Meade or Garoutte are leading. Hudspeth is on fire on guitar, especially on "Hurt But Strong" and on "Song She Sang." Meade gets to cut loose on harmonica, sounding like Sonny Boy Williamson on "Four Leaf Clover" and like Slim Harpo on "Show Them Whatcha Got." Cudos to Jan Faircloth and Jacque Garoutte for laying down the rock-solid foundation, playing with intensity and restraint, keeping everything hot and jumping on the bass and drums. I am looking forward to playing this disc for my friends. I already know that my friend Don will dig "It's Been So Long." But as impressive as the band is on this cd, I can only imagine that they really are best experienced live. I believe "Angel On My Shoulder" (and/or almost any other song here) would absolutely COOK in a live setting.

You can check the band's schedule for gigs in your area and you can buy this cd at http://www.leveetown.com

No comments: