One of the advantages of being an active gig goer is picking up recommendations from like minded ‘gig buddies’ of new acts to discover. One such that were being raved about prior to the pandemic were blues band The Cinelli Brothers, who had supported Bernie Marsden and played the prestigious blues gigs at Pizza Express.
For obvious reasons it took me a while to check them out but to my delight they played a local show to me at the Eel Pie Club. They were the second new rising stars in a month to make a debut appearance here, after Connor Selby.
The eponymous brothers, guitarist Marco and drummer Alessandro, are British based but Italian born and raised, and indeed could not look more archetypically Italian with their artfully coiffed dark hair and beards and stylish threads.
On the opener ‘Everything’s Gonna Be Alright Tonight’, Marco showed why he has been nominated for various blues guitarist awards with a marvellously tasteful solo which he made look so easy, but he shared top billing with the decidedly un- Italian Tom Julian-Jones, the hat wearing co-frontman whose blues harp playing dominated the first part of the song.
Marco was very much in the lead on ‘Save Me’, singing and using his wah wah pedal to coax some great sounds from his guitar, but then switched for a few numbers to keyboards, risking killing some of the momentum. In fact, Tom, wielding a left handed Strat was an excellent guitar player in his own right with a perhaps slightly edgier style, while it allowed them to dabble in a broad range of influences such as jazz and gospel.
The two also shared lead vocal duties throughout the set and their versatility with different combinations of guitar, harmonica, keyboards and vocals according to the song contributed to a remarkably varied set. ‘Wanna Have a Good Time’- one of a number of songs from a forthcoming album- had the feel of vintage funk and on ‘Your Lies’, Marco’s sneering vocals was complemented nicely by Tom’s harp playing.
The other selling point was their engaging sense of fun, epitomised by the fact Alessandro and bass player Enzo Strano spontaneously traded places for a song.
Having opened with some fairly lengthy numbers, they then played some shorter songs including ‘Married Woman’, a cover of country star’s Vince Gill’s ‘One More Last Chance’, delivered in more of a swampy southern rock style as Tom’s power chords and Marco’s slide playing intertwined nicely, and ‘Nothing but a Player’ which had a similarly twangy feel.
The second set began in insidious style with ‘Wolf Whistle’, with more prominent blues harp playing, and ‘Last Cigarette’ which had a late night jazz club feel before a series of songs concluding with ‘Choo Ma Gum’, that returned to the style of loose and lengthy, though never dull jams, not least when Marco was unleashing some exquisite solos.
They encored with Tom on lead vocals on ‘Back Down South’, preceded by joking that he was from ‘down south’ (Balham!) and the band leaving the stage to give Alessandro scope for a drum solo.
While it could be argued they are offering nothing original, the Cinelli Brothers certainly put a fresh twist on the music that influenced them and as entertaining performers have a potential crossover appeal beyond just blues purists. After this successful introduction, they are definitely a band I am keen to spend more time getting into.
Review and photos by Andy Nathan
The latest Josh Taerk live session was streamed on Sunday 26 September. This marked the start of a new monthly series. Josh’s next session is Sunday 31 October.
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 26 September 2021 and includes the Top 10 albums at www.getreadytorock.com for that week.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020 and 2021 Finalist) 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 28 September 2021.
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Featured Albums w/c 18 October 2021 (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 TAO Prophecy (Tarot Label Media)
12:00-13:00 LEVERAGE Above The Beyond (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 JOE TILSTON Tightrope (Our Records)
Power Plays w/c 18 October 2021 (Mon-Fri)
ABOVE SNAKES Nothing To Lose (indie)
FRANKIE AND THE WITCH FINGERS Cookin’ (Greenway Records)
LEADFINGER The Fall Of Rome (Golden Robot)
FEMEGADES Stealing Numbers (Regent Street Records)
TIGERSIDE Any Contact (indie)
INDYA Love Like Champagne (indie)
EDGE OF DESTINY Forsaken (indie)
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