Who Will I Turn To Now asks
Husky Tones with Attitude
Husky Tones, not as you have heard them before. This is the raw, urban blues with attitude which illustrates the direction Victoria Bourne and Chris Harper have taken the duo. Previously a four-piece band they now with have the energy of Victoria and Chris harnessed to the full on the new album showcasing their unique interpretation of contemporary blues as they ask Who Will I Turn To Now. The answer is Husky Tones for modern blues, described by them as Punk Blues. This is blues that is fresh, full of zing and attitude, slightly zany but always melodic and with textures that have grit this is a sound to get your teeth into.
The punk element is that these are songs of pain, protest and self-belief. Husky Tones, want you to sit back and go on a journey of discovery and self-awareness with blues that is for the here and now full of relevant beats and chords that hit the mark as Victoria spits out the vocals with melodic charm.
The album, Who Will I Turn To Now takes you on a journey via the power of Victoria’s drumming, the eloquence of her vocals and the guitar that radiates the texture of blues with attitude as Chris makes the six-strings purr, howl and jump for joy. Opening with Round The Wrekin; a West Midlands colloquialism taking the longest way to get to where you want to be a description says Victoria of the musical journey her and Chris have been on. The opener certainly hooks you in with guitar licks that make you want to learn more about the duo with a sense of the dramatic. Throughout the album, they remind me of the Two Timers with the depth and at the same time sparsity of sound. They know when to make a statement loud and clear and then they take the foot off the pedal. Jungle Blues is an example, here Victoria uses her voices as another instrument before picking up the lyrics laid bare above Chris’ guitar licks full of moody intent, reflecting the political message as we empathise with those caught in the refugee crisis. Perfect follow on to Momentum, with its optimism found in protest.
Half-way through an acoustic number has the power that silence and reflection hold. The Island of Barbed Wire is based on the experiences of Ludwig Dollitz, Victoria’s great uncle, interned on the Isle of Man as a German residing in the UK during WW1. The feeling of powerlessness resonates from a century ago to the global events of now. The rhythm is deep and strong on the title number Who Will I Turn To Now? Personal experience gives the words a passion and truth as Victoria explores her (she is not alone) experience of the Benefits system. Making you feel invisible, unimportant, worthless.
Then we are ready for fun and Husky Tones deliver that with upbeat party vibe These Hips Are Made For You, fast furious and still angry hence ‘punk-blues’. Closing with World’s End Lane, the album brings this part of the Husky Tones narrative using blues to a close. The album leaves you feeling emotionally drained yet empowered. Ready to protest and have an attitude that music is a force for change.
The album recorded at Platform Studio, Reading produced by Stuart Dixon has captured the essence of now. The feeling of loss, we want change, we want things to be better, fairer and a safer place to be. Husky Tones have set down the marker and the duo will be getting attention as they hit the road and the progression of this dynamic pair will be interesting.
NINE doodle paws out of TEN ….
- Round The Wrekin
- Jungle Blues
- One Good Reason
- Island Of Barbed Wire
- I Worry About Nothing
- Who Will I Turn To Now
- These Hips Were Made For You
- Put Your arms Around Someone You Love
- World’s End Lane