lördag 5 februari 2011

BLACK CAT BONES "Barbed Wire Sandwich" (1969)

The historically important tale of BLACK CAT BONES is a heavy blues rock one. Emerging from London in 1966 they rode the last waves of the British Blues Boom. Formed by Derek Brooks (rhythm guitar), Stuart Brooks (bass) and Paul Kossoff (lead guitar). After various changes regarding vocals and drums, the band decided on Brian Short and Simon Kirke.

Though, for their first and only album "Barbed Wire Sandwich", released in November 1969 by Decca's Nova label, Paul Kossoff and Simon Kirke had left the band to form FREE, together with Paul Rodgers. Guitarist Rod Price and drummer Phil Lenoir had joined BLACK CAT BONES, the band was still a five-piece. The album was recorded at the Tangerine and Decca Studios.

"Barbed Wire Sandwich" was however never a success, that lead to the departure of Brian Short, Rod Price and Phil Lenoir. The brothers, Derek and Stuart Brooks, got together with Pete French and Mick Halls in 1970, as well as Keith George Young - and LEAF HOUND was thereby born. Another curious fact is that Rod Price joined FOGHAT

The band name, originating from the folk magic Hoodoo, is the name of a lucky charm associated with blues music from the likes of Muddy Waters. Quick on the draw, BLACK CAT BONES open the album with the raw blues power of Chauffeur. Enticing with sexual passion from the mind melting guitars and the songs patient, swaying pace.

However, my favorite is the following Death Valley Blues. Brian Short manages to paint a blues landscape with his firm and earnest voice whilst the music turns into a reflection of that voice. Revving and wailing guitars, backed up with airy drumming and Stuart Brooks' melodic bass.

The whole album is packed with gems that in retrospect truly are as influential as they sound. Withholding an incredible cover of NINA SIMONE's Four Women, the warm potency of Sylvester's Blues and the mesmerizing Good Lookin' Woman, to name a few more.

/Banesa Martinez