Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

Kelly Richey

Shakedown Soul

2016-03-28

Female blues guitar players face a dilemma that their male contemporaries get to ignore: if they rock too hard they are accused of simply trying to be one of the boys. If they use their guitar as a backdrop for their lyrics rather than as a lead instrument they are accused of trading on their looks rather than their chops because they are not “real” guitarists. Of course such a dilemma is little more than the type of nonsense that people with nothing better to do waste time spouting about. Music is music and the tent is big enough for whatever mantle a blues woman wishes to bear without the need for an apology to anyone. Kelly Richey’s hard-nosed blues rock coupled with a venomous vocal delivery that recalls Chrissie Hynde when she was first hitting the scene with the Pretenders puts her in the company of the likes of Ana Popovic, Samantha Fish and Joanna Conner as top shelf guitar slingers who have charted a solid path through the blues that has the men trying to copy their licks rather than the other way around. The 10 cuts collected here hit you with the force of a sledgehammer with Richey’s incessant riffing over a mostly no-frills backdrop of drums and bass. The highlight is "Just Like a River" which recalls Joan Jett and the Blackhearts with its lighter pop rock feel. If you feel like a bit of head-banging this one is for you.

Smitty

review by Mark

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

The opinions expressed in these reviews are those of the individual volunteers that submitted the article and do not necessarily reflect the views of WYCE or GRCMC; nor its staff, donors, or affiliates.