The opening of this debut album, Set Me Free makes sure you listen, with Angela’s vocals full of sassy soulful blues that cascade out of the speaker and demand your attention! Blues Blues Lovin’ has a tempo that makes you feel good about the world it is high energy but never frenzied she has control of the vocals and the band this is her music Angela’s style of the blues with a voice that is full of character but not raucous. The ten tracks on the album have been selected to portray an element of Angela’s vocals that are always at the centre of shaping the sound, the title track sees her band’s music wrapping themselves around the vocals including with stylish slide guitar and horns that set Angela’s inner soul free. Hopeless is blues that allows the vocals once again to soar and work with the searing guitar riffs as the girl from Huddersfield shows a rawness as the lyrics pierce and the soul of the music is ripped bare. Better Man is gritty blues and the harmonica playing is the perfect foil for the depth and range of her vocals, this is a down to earth track that grounds the album at the half-way point. The last four tracks of the album continue with the same mix of vocals and instrumentation, at times I would have liked to have heard the instruments pick up the blues story to give different shapes and tempo to the album. This is partly achieved on Ice Cold Tears a slower number with some lovely guitar licks giving the track some ice cold shivers and I would have liked to have seen the voice take a breather and the guitar pick up the icy mood and then her voice would have had more dramatic impact that it definitely has the power to achieve.
Overall, a debut album with the grit of an uncut diamond, Angela Lewis Brown is a Blues vocalist to watch out for she has the voice to make a real impact on the scene, with her understanding of the blues and the ability to take the listener on an emotional journey.
Bluesdoodles gives this CD SEVEN doodle paws out of TEN ….
TRACK LISTING – Angela Lewis Brown – Set Me Free
1. Blues Blues Lovin’
2. Set Me Free
3. Summer Nights
4. I’m Feeling Good About Me
6. Better Man
8. Ice Cold Tears
9. That’s You
10. I’ll Be There