On the heels of their well-received 2016 album ‘Kentucky, US rockers Black Stone Cherry issue their long awaited 6-song EP, Black To Blues – a collection of blues classics and obscurities reimagined with the meaty moxie of classic BSC.
“I know it’s crazy for four rock n’ roll dudes to make a blues EP, but it’s us sharing with everyone the music that’s been our DNA from day one,” vocalist and guitarist Chris Robertson says.
MORE ABOUT BLACK TO BLUES
Before their five critically acclaimed albums, the 12,000-cap arena shows, topping the UK charts, and sharing the stage with superstars like Def Leppard, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bad Company, Alter Bridge and Shinedown, the guys in the Kentucky-based active rock powerhouse were just teenagers finding their way jamming on the blues.
“A defining moment for me was realizing all the rock n’ roll that I loved came from the blues,” Chris says.
As a lead vocalist, Chris honed his burly pipes studying the power of the Texas Tornado himself, Freddie King, who they cover on ‘Black to Blues’ and, throughout their career, the group has always sprinkled in a few blues evergreens in their live set. “The blues is such honest music. When you hear it, it’s like ‘I’m down on my luck, and, damn, that guy gets just how I feel.’” Chris shares.
“I hope by sharing this music we have the beautiful opportunity to expose a new generation to the blues.”
Black To Blues opens with the Howlin’ Wolf classic ‘Built For Comfort.’ Here, they harness the song’s dark energy with foot-stomping burly riffage, impassioned whiskey and honey vocals, and a peaks and valleys arrangement that features virtuosic bursts of bluesy guitar brilliance, smoky quiet passages, and mountains crashing down climaxes. Throughout the EP, the imaginative arrangements, soulful vocals, and subtle band interplay evoke the halcyon days of heavy blues acts such as Free and Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac.
Check out ‘Built For Comfort’:
On ‘Champagne & Reefer’ they mesmerise with deft slide guitar playing and powerful contrasting haunting and hefty dynamics. Other standouts include a raucous take of Muddy Waters version of ’ ‘I Want To Be Loved,’ complete with jaw-dropping blues-rock guitar solos, and a clever rendition of Freddie King’s ‘Palace Of King”, there they “moved one note to make it more dark,” Chris reveals. The blues is always a sage teacher, and making the ‘Black To Blues’ EP was a transformative experience for Black Stone Cherry. Chris says: “It was humbling and freeing at the same time. It reignited our passion for this music, and it will definitely have an effect on our next album.”
Black To Blues will be released September 29 via Mascot Records.
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