Gig review: ERJA LYYTINEN – The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

ERJA LYYTINEN - The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

Like Joanne Shaw Taylor, who we reviewed recently, we’ve followed Erja Lyytinen since at least her major label album debut in 2006.  Pete Feenstra is of course a great advocate: promoting her gigs, playing and reviewing her albums.  And like JST she has shown the ability to break out of the true blues/rock template,  the more so on her new album due at the end of April.

Erja treated us to a preview of several songs tonight, not least the superb title track.  However ‘Another World’ does stand juxtaposed with the rest of the set list culled mainly from the previous offering Stolen Hearts.

ERJA LYYTINEN - The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

The long blues workout ‘Slow Burning’ in some respects became as tortuous as the subject matter whilst the climatic ‘Rocking Chair’ was perhaps unnecessarily drawn out.  The more direct song based material is what really impressed – that new title track again – plus the likes of ‘Cherry Overdrive’ and ‘Black Ocean’.

And there lies the conundrum.  Chatting to Erja after the gig it is clear that she is refreshlingly unconstrained in terms of musical direction and the new album reflects that.  However the current set list is a reflection of her more familiar blues-with-a hint-of-jazz that is unlikely to pull in a younger, wider, audience.  Put it this way, when Erja is still in her musical prime, in 15 years time, her core audience will be nearly 80 and dribbling over their own rocking chair.

ERJA LYYTINEN - The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

Finland’s finest musical export since Tarja, she should milk her Scandi sass and engaging energy – and appeal to a new demographic. Maybe ‘Another World’ will help this process.  Throughout, keyboard player Kasperi Kallio provided earthy Hammond textures (even if looking far too serious) whilst bassist Tatu Back also provided useful backing vocals.

Troy Redfern - The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

Tonight was something of a showcase for slide guitar with special guest Troy Redfern, another Pete Feenstra favourite. Featuring several highlights from his two band albums including ‘The Brave’ and  ‘The Line’  (from Dirt Blues Ritual) whilst rounding up with the John Lee Hooker standard ‘Mad Man Blues’.

This was a first visit to Oxford and The Bullingdon and emphasising the hard working and enlightened individuals who continue to back the blues such as Penny Lee and The Haven Club.

Review and photos by David Randall

Haven Club, Oxford
Album review

ERJA LYYTINEN - The Bullingdon, Oxford, 27 March 2019

The latest Facebook Live session from Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk Sunday 21 March 16:00 EST, 21:00 GMT

Watch again

More about Josh

David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 14 March 2021 and includes the Top 10 albums at for that week.

UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 23 March 2021.

Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
Click the appropriate icons at the top of the page.

Featured Albums w/c 5 April 2021 (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 GARY HUGHES Decades (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 METALITE A Virtual World (AFM Records)
14:00-16:00 KAT DANSER One Eye Open (indie)

Power Plays w/c 5 April 2021 (Mon-Fri)

ALTZI Point Of No Return (RA Music)
DIRTY LACES Breathe (Golden Robot Records)
ASHEN MOON Ashen Moon (Golden Robot Records)
ANDREWW Shadow Love (indie)
JORDAN RED Freak Show (indie)
HAYES & Y Empty Orchestra (indie)
KELSEY BOVEY Another World (indie)
NEPTUNE RAIN We Breathe The Same (indie)

Popular (last 30 days)

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
This entry was posted in All Posts, GIG REVIEWS. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply