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Eliza Neals – “Black Crow Moan”

Eliza Neals has a new album, Black Crow Moan and if you want to blast away your blues, this is what you need. She has a host of guitarists backing her up , including Joe Louis Walker and Derek St. Holmes who played with Ted Nugent. She also has some great back up singers including her sister, Valerie Taylor.In fact, every musician on here is terrific, And so is Eliza and her new material !She is as wild and soulful as ever.Think Janis Joplin and Koko Taylor with a lot of of pure Detroit soul and you will have an idea what to expect.

You know you’re in for some raging blues when you hear the opening chords of “Don’t Judge the Blues” and Eliza’s vocals and the chugging percussion fulfill that promise. The tempo continues for the next song, “Why You Oogin’ Me,”which is a different sort of look at a peeping Tom!

Moving on, here is a real treat. Joe Louis Walker and Neals are extremely well-matched vocally, and here they offer a powerful message accented by Bruce Bears’ Hammond B3 .Church is never like this!

Now things slow down for a heartfelt power ballad, “watch Me Fly.”n This is an exceptionally well-written song too, showcasing Neals’ power in that respect. It is followed by “River is Rising,” which has a strong Bon Jovi vibe and some great vocal harmonies.

“Run Sugar Run” is a poppy son , again featuring great harmony and a message of courage and hope. “Black Crow Moan,” a great title, once again finds Eliza in a duet with Joe Louis Walker, to haunting effect.

“Never Stray” is an aching blues with powerful guitar bolstering Eliza’s raspy delivery. Next is a fabulous version of the classic “Ball and Chain” Yes, you’ve heard it many times, but this will make you feel like you are hearing it for the first time.

To finish it off, you’ll have a party with the rock and roll extravaganza, “Take Your Pants Off.”

This CD will make you forget all about being stuck inside! Give it a listen and see if Eliza Neals does not give your whole day a lift!

Posted in blues, Music, Uncategorized

Eliza Neals – Sweet or Mean

Eliza Neals comes out swinging on her new EP, Sweet or Mean! She found a real match when she teamed up with notorious guitarist, vocalist, and producer Ted Horowitz, better known as Poppa Chubby, who can be just as rough and tough as Neals herself can. Poppa Chubby also arranged all six of Neals’ original compositions for the EP.

Other great artists who lend their talents on the recording are Dave Keyes on piano and Hammond organ, Chris Gambaro-Vega on bass and John Madieros Jr. on drums. The horn section includes saxophonist Ian Hendrickson-Smith from Jimmy Fallon’s band and Michael Leonhart on trumpet.

But even with all this firepower backing her up, it is Eliza who burns the brightest. While you know you’re in for something special from the first notes of Poppa Chubby’s slide guitar on “Pawn Shop Blues,” it is that barrelhouse voice of Neals’ that grabs you and won’t let go! This is followed by “Blackish Gray,” full-on blues in reality, with more fantastic instrumental work perfectly showcasing Neals’ raw, deeply emotional voice.

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Things get confessional on” Bitten By The Blues,” about a “rock ‘n roll girl who’s been bitten by the blues.” It has Poppa Chubby channeling vintage blues-rock gods on guitar and excellent keyboards by Dave Keyes. Then we get the not and humorous “Livin With Yo Mama.” Lordy, how they all do wail!

“Knock, Knock, Knock,” hits the rock side of blues-rock with some really tasty guitar and a less frantic shuffle rhythm for its sly, witty vocal. Then we end up full circle with a rousing roadhouse version of “Pawn Shop Blues,” quite different from the first but just as entertaining.

This EP offers a solid rush of music that is as satisfying as many full albums. If there is a modern successor to Janis Joplin, this may convince you that Eliza Neals is it. If you’re looking for something to get a party started or blast out your car windows, or just dance to with abandon in your living room, Sweet or Mean is what you’re looking for!