These Wicked Rivers are not The Enemy
Four tracks on the EP The Enemy from These Wicked Rivers. The band is a four-piece from Derby, John Hartwell combining vocals and Rhythm guitar is joined by Arran Day on Lead Guitar and backing vocals. This is the pair that shape the rock and roll vibe that hits the British groove. Joined by the heartbeat of the band is the rhythm section, Jon Hallam on bass and drummer Dan Southall. Throughout the four tracks they have achieved to create a sound that will be associated with These Wicked Rivers, they have influences including Black Stone Cherry, Joe Bonamassa and Gary Clarke Jnr. These influences shine in places but never dominate the sound.
This is a band that is demanding to be heard on stage and recorded the four tracks are a real teasing taster of what the band could offer on a full album.
Opening with Ladykiller, the band introduces you to their distinctive deep and luscious melodies and guitar work that entertains. The music is rock that lights up the airwaves with a combination of sounds that are balanced and full of luscious depths you want to explore. The tone is more reserved on The Bottom Of Here, the tempo slows and John’s vocals curl around the guitar creating an intimate rock sound that beguiles. Leading you into the clash of cymbals and the number opens up, without overpower the essence of the tempo created and shaped in the opening moments. The guitar work stings with bluesy riffs that lead into Can’t Take It. I for one can take a lot more of the talent that is hinted at on this début album. This is definitely my personal favourite. The despair of urban loneliest fuels the track giving shape and purpose and reflected in the lead break and the driving drum beats. The vocals have power, are gruff, deep down and dirty, twisting around the vocals reminding me of Marcus Bonfanti’s approach to creating big modern blues sound. Closing with The Enemy, title track the speed and drive leaves you wanting this to be the fourth track of an album The EP just leaves you wanting more from this young band These Wicked Rivers. They have achieved a maturity of sound, it is rock that remembers its heart is still beating in the blues.
Bluesdoodles gives this CD EIGHT doodle paws out of TEN ….