Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Mario Rossi Band turn the blues Heavy

Brazilian blues phenomenon, Mario Rossi, just keeps on getting better; after two very good albums (Electric Art and Same Old Street), he has put together seven new tracks that show his continuing maturity and although his influences, including Mountain, Cream, Hendrix, Zeppelin, are present, they remain firmly in the background as Mario stamps his own personality all over the new album called, descriptively, Heavy.

The opener, ‘Nemesis’, sets his stall out with a Freestyle intro quickly transformed by an electric slide into a huge blues number that is already on repeat… there’s a short bass solo too! ‘Midnight Woman’ is ZZ plays Mountain; ‘I Could Be Good For You Now’ isn’t (mercifully) Dennis Waterman, but a slow and crafted blues song with great guitar and a wonderfully disjointed piano and Hammond solos that fit well. ‘Raw ’n’ Rough Boogie’ is just that as Mario this channels his inner Gallagher and the band back him up so solidly.

Further down the tracklist, we have ‘That Letter’ which is Trower-ish in the chord work but this slow and slow-burning blues-rock song quickly grows, especially with the great picked guitar solo. The final track, ‘Acid/Chemistry’ is perhaps apt, as the cymbal, the bass intro is overlaid by some fast, hesitant runs before bursting to life in a Hendrixian flurry, and keeps building into an exceedingly strong and varied slice of quality blues-rock.

Some will point to the vocals as a weakness, but remember English is Mario’s second language and he actually reminds me a lot of Antonis Tourkogiorgis from Socrates Drank The Conium and, with a few listens they both have a unique and worthy style that is more than acceptable, also when the music is this good frankly, who cares! 

Heavy is released on 8th October as an independent release

4.5 Stars

Tom Dixon
North East born, South West domiciled music lover - mainly heavy rock & blues but not averse to other genres. I'm fortunate to have retired early & I can now take full advantage of the 40+ years I have spent collecting, listening, watching & playing (badly) & have enjoyed researching how blues in particular has shaped the music we know & love today. Now if only I could get my Strat & Musicman to sound in reality how they do in my head!

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