Quick Plays: DONOVAN’S DEVILS, SAKLIF KEITA, WILD ROSE, HEIDI TALBOT

DONOVAN’S DEVILS – Brothers Above All www.donovansdevils.com

 Formed in 2011, Donovan’s Devils consists of Teddy Venezia (vocals/guitar), Austin Martinez (lead guitar), TJ Bernhard (bass) and Michael Gangino (drums). Their debut album is an acoustic driven one and despite on their website declaring themselves as blues influenced they reminded me a lot of Green Day in their acoustic moments. The songs are enjoyable with ‘Strongest Stones’ and ‘What Dreams May Come’ the stand out songs. Give them a listen on their website particularly if you enjoy blues flavoured acoustic rock.

***1/2

Jason Ritchie

SALIF KEITA ‘Tale’ UMC

Malian singer Salif Keita is very well known and regarded in African and world music circles. This may not be your usual fare for a reader of GRTR! but if like me you are a music fan who likes all forms of music then do give this a listen. Salif Keita has a soothing, soulful voice as can be heard on ‘Natty’ and the title track. Do check out the wonderful ‘Simby’ with Bobby McFerrin guesting on the most amazing vocal effects. Not so keen on the reggae/rap of ‘C’est bob, C’est bon’ with Roots Manuva guesting. For a musical treat and something different this album is just the ticket.

****

Jason Ritchie

WILD ROSE ‘Dangerous’ AOR Heaven (Released 22nd February)

Second album from this AOR band featuring  guitarist Andy Rock and the band’s new vocalist David A Saylor (check out his cracking solo album ‘City Of Angels’ released last year on the same label or the Push UK album).

If this album didn’t feature the wonderful vocal talents of David A Saylor this album would be bypassed by many as the music whilst well played, is very much ‘heard it all before’. Also you can play cut ‘n’ paste with the song titles – ‘Hold On’, ‘Dream On’, ‘Is This Love’- you get the picture. Saylor does put in a fine performance and that’s what saves this album. It’s safe AOR/melodic rock with a good vocalist and although it won’t win any year end best of awards many lovers of melodic rock will enjoy this album.

***

Jason Ritchie

HEIDI TALBOT – Angels Without Wings Navigator Records (Released 18th February)

This is Heidi Tablot’s fifth solo album to date and one of her most star studded with guest appearances from Mark Knopfler, Jerry Douglas, Kenny Anderson (King Creosote) and legendary accordion player Phil Cunningham to name but a few.

Heidi has a lovely high and wistful voice as deftly illustrated on the title track. ‘Button Up’ features Kenny Anderson on co-vocals, one of the album’s stand out songs along with ‘Wine and Roses’ (which features Knopfler’s distinctive guitar playing).

If i had one criticism it is that although she has a lovely voice some of the songs lack that certain something to make them stand up to repeated plays. There is no doubting her talent and it is a good album, just not quite as spectacular as the guest list would have you expecting it to be.

***1/2

Jason Ritchie


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In this two hour special David Randall plays a selection of the GRTR! reviewer choices for ‘Best of 2019′ and announces the results of the popular poll. First broadcast Sunday 22 December 2019.

Featured Albums w/c 6 January (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 JESSE DAMON Damon’s Rage (AOR Heaven)
12:00-13:00 STORMFORCE Age Of Fear (Escape Music)
14:00-16:00 GARY FLETCHER Rivers Keep Flowing (indie)



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