Opening with Storm Warning, Little Devil, set down the shape and form of their own brand of devilish blues, there is a sense of anticipation as we have the combination of guitar blues harp and then the hint of the vocals we are going to relish throughout the album.
The Birth Of The Blues is perfectly formed from the first beat from the drum and then the yearning guitar as we anticipate the vocals from Yoka, on this track sultry and alluring as she shapes the vocals around the guitar licks so it is a duet as she tells the tale with lines like “Money talks – sets the odds; Dance with the devil or walk with Gods; Heads they win, tails you lose ….” Birth of the Blues is a modern take on why the blues are still relevant to our lives as they are being born again in the anguish of modern living. The bass line of All About Love gives the tone and rhythmic shape for Yoka’s voice to sing sweetly about love and then there is the lead break which is short and perfectly formed.
Then we here a different voice A long Time Ago as Graeme takes on the vocal duties and Yoka takes on being flautist in this track giving a tension of after a storm with a wind that is persistent giving the track a drive and deep moodiness. The Ghost of A Kiss is a blues/rock ballad that fills every available space with Yoka’s vocals as she drives how the yearning then the instruments take over, the relentless beat of the drum, guitar and the saxophone crying for that tantalising taste that is a ghost of a kiss this is a song that makes her into a rock diva with emotional intelligence.
As we draw to the end of the album we have a new twist in the stormy journey with a country feel to My Perfect You with keys acting as the backdrop for Yoka’s perfectly formed vocals that leads you through the music and the full gamut of regrets as you took my soul. The last two tracks on the album are back with a meteorological title Cold and Heavy Weather as a fiddle is played we are introduced to another colour to their palette of blues and musical interpretations with Americana country feel and a rag-time timbre to her voice as she warms your heart with her melodic interpretation of cold. The final offering is the sound of the sea, drums, guitar and flute in what is a dramatic intro that is very Ian Anderson/Jethro Tull the music paints a picture as the saxophone adds another layer the humidity of the sound rises as Heavy Weather is building on this stylish instrumental that allows the musicality of the band to shine through.
All fourteen tracks are originals and fit the band’s style to a tee and the thematic from the title The Storm Inside is heard throughout, whether it is the weather of emotions that are casing the external and or internal pressures. Little Devils are an unfettered force that is for the good of modern blues that want to deliver music to be heard and understood, with a stormy energy that hits you right in the solar plexus and sends shivers down your spine.
The Storm Inside is the storm that is Little Devils, the sound created is definitely not little but full of musical devilment that keeps your interest and makes sure the blues is rocked up into a musical frenzy of delight.
Bluesdoodles gives this CD TEN doodle paws out of TEN ….
1. Storm Warning
3. Deep Inside
4. Skin Sin
5. Birth of The Blues
6. All About Love
7. A Long Time Ago
8. Present Tense
9. The Ghost of A Kiss
10. I Still Want You Back
12. My Perfect You
14. Heavy Weather
Yoka: Lead and Backing Vocals, Saxophone and Flute
Big Ray: All Guitars, Keyboards, Piano & Backing Vocals
Graeme: Bass, Double Bass, Harp & Occasional Vocals
Sara: Drums, All Percussion & Backing Vocals